Saturday, November 21, 2015
"It was a lot medical, but it was more fun..."
Traveling with Rowan can be difficult to say the least, especially for two whole weeks, by myself, 2000 miles from home. He does NOT travel lightly...
But rest assured, we have fun where ever we go! And God puts amazing people in our lives...even when we are far from home.
Here are some photos from a few of the truly "fun" times we had on this recent trip to Seattle. On the way home, Rowan even told the girl who sat next to us, on our final leg, about his trip. He said, "It was a lot medical, but it was more fun!" Here are a few of the people who helped make this trip more fun!
We have been blessed to have an absolutely amazing woman come in to our lives. She is a photo-journalist from San Antonio, and is working on an ongoing story about Rowan. She has been following him for 9 months now. Luckily she was even able to accompany us on the first half of this recent trip to Seattle. She is usually the one taking all of the photos, but I snapped these two candid shots of her with Rowan, and I'm so glad I did.
A friend of mine from back in high school (in Ohio), happens to live in Seattle now. Thank you Dave for meeting us for dinner, and better yet for being such a good sport with Rowan...the arm wrestling, the legos...I can't thank you enough. He needed some male bonding at that point in the trip, and I really appreciate you making time for us.
As we have mentioned before, we love Hotel Deca in Seattle! They have not only provided great service, but we have become dear friends with some of their staff (Rowan has that affect on people). This trip, one of their employees asked if she could take Rowan and I to the zoo on our day off from appointments. She took the afternoon off of work, brought along her 5 month old gorgeous daughter, and took us to the Woodland Park Zoo. It just so happened to be the only sunny day that entire week:) We were blown away by the beauty of the zoo, and by its vast grounds, but more so by her kindness and friendship. Thank you Meghan, and Winter, for a priceless day trip to the zoo!
Ian's God-father, Andrew, lives in New York now, and we haven't been able to see him for years! Well, while I was in Seattle, I noticed that Andrew posted a picture on Facebook, that showed that he was in Seattle too! I was floored. We were both more than 1000 miles from our homes, which were more than 1000 miles from each other. I messaged him right away, and we figured out an evening that we both were free to meet up for dinner. Talk about a small world, and God's timing! Andrew and Rowan had the best time together. I just sat back, smiled and enjoyed the show. They shared deep conversations, had monumental "talks", Andrew interviewed Rowan so he could share it with his own young boys, they built the Space Needle out of legos, and Andrew took Rowan for his first ever Benihana experience. It was a night that I doubt any of us will soon forget. Thank you Andrew...from the bottom of my heart for taking Rowan's mind off of the next day's medical procedure, for walking in the down-pouring rain with us, and for remaining such a great friend, despite the years and the miles. We love you dearly!
Some of you may remember that we made friends with an employee from a different hotel, three Seattle trips ago. Daniel is so awesome! He gifted us with tickets to the Seattle Aquarium, and a gift shop gift card, the first time we met him, and then dressed up as Batman and took Rowan (who was dressed up as Rocket Raccoon) to the Museum of Flight during the next trip. We have remained in contact and Daniel is a dear friend of ours now. This trip we worked it out so we could meet up with our friend Andrew at the Renaissance Hotel Bar, where Daniel was working. So good to get to hug your neck Daniel! Thank you for being such a bright light during our last 3 trips to Seattle.
One of the other staff members that we met at Hotel Deca last April (who took Rowan on his private Easter egg Hunt in the hotel lobby), now works somewhere new. We really connected though and have stayed in contact with her as well. Sweet Kelsey! We adore you and I am so glad we got those few minutes to pop in to Fran's Chocolates (yes, that portrait is made of chocolates), to see you as we were on our way to the airport to leave for home. Thank you for keeping in touch. So glad we got to hug you too! See you next time, friend.
Our very favorite restaurant in Seattle is Costas, a family run, out of this world, Greek Restaurant in the University District, just around the corner from Hotel Deca. Rowan and I have eaten there almost daily for the past two trips. It is delicious, inexpensive, amazing food, and we have come to know the staff and owners quite well now. We will probably dream of your food until we return. Thank you for your authentic food, terrific service, kindness and generosity. We look forward to seeing you again.
Seattle Children's Hospital:
Believe it or not, we actually enjoy the hospital too. What a tremendously caring staff, and beautifully decorated and themed facility. Rowan felt so comfortable and at home...especially when you made the exception for him, and allowed me to gown up and take him back to anesthesia myself. He was having a bit of anxiety going under in a new place, after discovering that I would not be allowed to accompany him to the Gi lab as I do at home. I may have looked like an oompa loompa, and I may regret posting this picture, but you know what...it comforted Rowan, so it is an important part of our trip.
Robyn and Jaylin:
Rowan and I were blessed by two strangers the first day we arrived at the hospital this trip. They follow Rowan on Facebook, and left us tickets to the local zoo, at the hospital registration desk. Unfortunately (or not), Jaylin got admitted back into the hospital while we were there. This gave us the opportunity to go thank them in person the last day that we were there at the hospital. Rowan was asleep, but Jaylin and I had the best conversation. What a neat kid! And he was so much like Rowan. Thank you Robyn and Jaylin for the zoo passes, for allowing us to visit you in the transplant wing of the hospital (where we will likely be oursleves in a few months), and for your new special friendship. Jaylin, keep fighting, keep walking, and keep your beautiful, humorous spirit. Your smile not only lit up the room, it lit up my heart!
I hope this post eases your hearts, especially if they are heavy from last night's post. We have seen many silver linings in our life, but the friends (and often, even the strangers) that God puts in our path during these trying times are the shiniest, brightest, silver linings you have ever seen. Just look at the faces and smiles above, both Rowan's and their's. You can't get depressed with this many kind gestures... and you can't frown with this many smiles...you just can't. May you all experience joys like these during your trials too. Amen.
Rowan wants me to add that a whole lotta legos helps too. Thank you Lorraine:)
Thanks and love to you all...
May you have some fun in the midst of your difficult days too:)