Being a heart parent is tough. Being a heart parent in the hospital during an inpatient admission is darn near impossible. It's ridiculously stressful and almost all of your usual methods of releasing that stress are pretty much prohibited within the confines of a tiny ICU room.
If exercise is your primary method of stress relief, forget it - we have yet to find a hospital with an in-house gym (although we'd be the first to recommend one, if asked!). We do know one heart mom who simply put on her running shoes and ran right out the doors of the ICU and kept running through the doors of the hospital and into the surrounding neighborhoods - she did that every day until her child was discharged. And we know a handful of others who've done stair workouts while their child was sleeping (stairs are something pretty much every hospital has!). But it's just not the same as getting in a real workout and doesn't provide near the same stress relieving benefits.
And if you like to blow off steam with a drink or 2, that's also pretty frowned upon in a hospital setting (ok, it's more than frowned upon - although we do know more than our fair share of moms who've snuck in an glass of wine or a flask, you'd get pretty well kicked out if you actually got caught!). And sadly for most of our families, Ronald McDonald Houses share the same no-alcohol policy!
So that doesn't leave you with a lot of options and well, let's face it, built up stress isn't good for anybody, least of all worried parents who have to interact with doctors and nurses all day and need to maintain a modicum of grace while doing so.
So we were overjoyed to stumble upon Paperblanks and their gorgeous journals.
Seriously, aren't these amazing?!? Finally, a stress reliever that is both practical and hospital-approved! The therapeutic benefits of journaling are well established and we're happy to do our part to make this option available for our families. We contacted Paperblanks to see about a donation and were thrilled to receive not just 1, but 120 of them!
You can give a great big thank-you (and order more of their amazing products for yourself) at www.paperblanks.com.
Thank you Paperblanks for helping our heart families maintain their sanity in the midst of VERY stressful times!
We'll be honest - we didn't find this one on our own. A fellow heart mom posted pictures of a Pampers basket she had received; the basket included a darling matching onesie and hat that read "I'm a little miracle." For real?!?
How perfect could this possibly be for our care packages? A onesie with such a perfect sentiment bowled us over. We noticed they were made by Gerber, and, well, to be honest, we've been trying unsuccessfully for over a year now to get Gerber to donate side-snap onesies for our care packages, so we weren't too optimistic we could get them. But, then we realized they were actually distributed by Pampers and decided to give Pampers a try. Pampers was so accommodating! To our surprise, they gave us a huge donation (130 to be exact) in tons of different sizes. Our minds are already spinning thinking of what we'll use the bigger sizes for (Prizes? Glenn packages someday, perhaps? So many options!).
|HLHS Warrior in his Miracle gear!|
You can thank Pampers by choosing to purchase their products for the special babies in your life! Thank you Pampers for your generosity and partnership in giving our families HOPE!
If you know a product you think would be great for our care packages and you'd like to help solicit a donation, please let us know! Our care packages are changing all the time and we always welcome help finding new amazing items!