Today is Bridget’s birthday or as we say in our house her HAPPY DAY.
Six years ago my Boo was born without giving us any inkling on how she would change our family and our community. There are days I cannot believe it, that Bridget is here and healthy. It’s not without hiccups. For example, yesterday morning the school nurse called. She wanted to inform me that Bridget had swelling and redness around her eye. She hadn’t fallen and wasn’t in pain.
Is this normal for Bridget?
Um….well not really but not anything I have to call 911 over. But it is moments like this that remind me of all I have to be thankful for on Bridget’s Happy Day. I do not know if it is because she was born on Thanksgiving or if we just have so much to be thankful for that beginning on her first birthday (and every year since) I have been determined to thank those who give Bridget so much more than I ever thought possible.
Thank you to Abby who shows more patience and love than I ever could. Abby who is so generous with her time, with her Barbies and with her love. Abby who never minds putting her friends aside for a minute to give her sister full attention.
For the ESP’s who do not panic when Bridget turns blue, has abnormal swelling or stomach pain. They care for Bridget as if she was their own child. They think nothing of stopping every morning (or whenever) to have a conversation and hug before they go on their way to work with their assigned student. One ESP gave Bridget a gift recently, for no reason at all. Just because she and her daughters found it and new Bridget would be overjoyed at a Sophia hat. They thought nothing of the expense (or the favoritism).
For the friends who treated Abby to the “best sleep overs of her life” when we had to travel to Georgia with Bridget for testing. Not one person would take a dime from us. Not one person would ever tell me Abby was a pain in the neck or how her being their impacted their family. Instead, every family that contributed their time (food and housing and in one case pool) to Abby asked us to call them again the minute we needed them.
For the therapists who take more interest in Bridget than just working on her speech, occupational or physical therapies. Every single person who works with Bridget is there not just for her care but for our entire family. They have helped Abby with her homework in the waiting room. They have held my hand as I cried. They have offered to set a voodoo curse on a doctor that I have lost all respect and validated my reasoning. They have lifted a pint in celebration of any milestone our girl shatters. They share their lives with me, making me a friend and not a parent of a patient.
For the teachers at Bridget’s school (from the principal to the janitor) who embrace all that is Bridget. Especially Trisha, who comes up with innovative ideas to make Bridget successful in the classroom. Even if it means she has to listen to THE BIG PUMPKIN all morning long.
For the family that understands Bridgetitis is a way of life and is there no matter what we may ask of them.
For our dog, Bailey who loves his girl so much he has been a rug, a blanket and a soft place to land in the midst of terror and triumph.
For the YMCA and their Challenged Youth Swim, this program has been fantastic for Bridget. While she still cannot swim, she is learning. Wow.
For not needing a second spinal surgery, enough said on that one!
For the Doctor in Georgia who gave us hope and an answer.
For the PACS1 Syndrome community who welcomed us with open arms and offered their insight of what Bridget might accomplish.
For the Doctors at Children’s who did not play the politics and instead showed true excitement that an answer was found. Not for all of Bridget’s quirks but for the ones that matter. I am so thankful that her Geneticist is willing and eager to collaborate with the originators of the PACS1 Syndrome study, as always putting Bridget first.
For being allowed to break, vent, cry and scream too often yet always having the support of those who understand what being there means. From attending any Girls Night In, to answering a frantic text or just dropping by to check in on me.
For every single person that is there for Bridget and her family in this life I never expected six years ago. While all the days might not have been easy, they have been supported with the love and care of our village.
A village I never knew existed or appreciated until that moment they were needed.
Thank you to every single person in our lives for making all of Bridget’s days Happy Ones.