I was fortunate to have Dr. Mark McLaughlin as my Radiologists at Kennestone Hospital for so many reasons. After seeing him daily for over a month, and meeting T and the C's he did two very special things for us not counting being a part of saving my life. Dr. McLaughlin invited all of us to meet some of the Atlanta Falcons at the hospital one evening and that was awesome. Like a dream for me. The other thing he did was something that I would have never ever dreamed of.
One day a nurse of Dr. McLaughlin's had come to talk to me about a program. Saying that the doctor wanted to submit my families name to a foundation that did special things for families of those that had terminal illness' and young children. So T and I filled out the paperwork, figuring what's the worst that could happen? Not get picked and we live on, I was OK either way.
Fast forward to June and we had already moved to Texas. I remember the day and getting the phone call from a woman named Heidi. Heidi explained that she was the Executive Director and started telling me about the Jack and Jill Late Stage Cancer Foundation.
When a person finds out they have a terminal illness, their lives and the lives of their family are taken and shaken and flipped up inside out. Often the focus is on the the actual patient and what they need. People tend to somewhat forget about what the spouse needs or what are the children missing out on. Usually a person will make a "bucket list" of things THEY want to do before they maybe pass on. What JAJF (Jack and Jill Foundation) does is treat the entire family to chance to make what they call "WOW! Experiences". The WOWs give children who may lose a mom or dad the chance to step back and get away from the pain while creating memories as a complete family while they can still do this together.
So now after Heidi tells T and I about the foundation she starts asking us questions about us and the kids and things that we like to do and places we have gone. To be honest with you T and I thought this was an interview type thing and we were still moving along in the process of maybe being selected. Answers we are giving Heidi are those that consist of the beach, Disney World, and other places we have gone and things we have done with the kids. Then it hit us like a bus.
"How about we send you all to San Diego, California?" T and I look at each other and are shocked and stunned. We had no idea this was coming. "We can send you to San Diego and you can do the Zoo and LegoLand and hit the beach." It didn't take long for us to tell her "YES". Heidi says she will email us and send us some things to fill out and she would call us again in the future. Telling us to think of a date that we may have in mind.
So after little consideration and much planning by Heidi the dates were set having us leaving on Thursday August 21st and coming back Sunday August 24th. Now since everything was set in place for a great WOW! Experience, the hardest part was going to be keeping it a secret from the 4 C's.