Christmas eve started with me waking up early. I missed Hope like crazy after not seeing her on the 23rd, I almost drove over in the night when I woke up! It was a difficult task to stay away from one of my girls, but also just what I needed to stop the burn out. I was so excited to get to the hospital and see Hope smiling. She is such a happy girl these days and is starting to develop more once again.
I headed home to see Shawn and Sadie in the later afternoon when a friend arrived. I simply had not had my fill of Hope yet and Sadie wanted to see her sister, so we came back! We had a quick visit and then headed off to Oma and Opa's church while Hope snuggled with one of our friends. Only the sweetest person offers to spend Christmas Eve overnight with Hope so we could have some time with Sadie in a more fun environment.
After church we were off to Oma and Opa's for dinner and presents. It was nice to have time as a family, but I truly missed Hope. It made me ache for my friends that have lost a child. When one of the little ones isn't there, things just don't feel complete. I am thankful that although Hope is stuck in the hospital, she is still alive. I am often afraid of the future, I fear losing Hope and the pain of moving forward without her. It was a reminder to pray for the families that have had to do this already.
Sadie got home late, fast asleep in her carseat. We plunked her into bed, quickly filled the stockings and were off to bed ourselves. I was up first, and had a chance to get some things ready to be sure we could get back to see Hope before it was late in the day. Sadie woke up around 9:15 (she's a wonderful child!) and was so excited to wake up Daddy and see if Santa had come.
Sadie played with new toys and was so excited about every detail. It was an incredible reminder that less is often more. She was not overwhelmed by the piles of toys, there were no piles. She was able to play with each of the things she got and truly appreciate them. It was the chance to be together that we loved, not the things we opened.
We then hopped in the car and rushed over to see Hope. She looked beautiful in her dress, we had Sadie in a matching dress! She was so happy once again and has had two good nights sleep in a row. Hopefully that continues tonight for me! Sadie found more presents here at the hospital that were donated for the families here. She got a big doll house and had lots of fun playing with it all. Hope was spoiled once again as well and has no shortage of fun things to explore in her crib.
Thanks to the kindness of others, we were able to enjoy a nice turkey dinner at the hospital! The food was incredible and we were so touched by the effort of another family on Christmas. It makes me want to adopt a family in the hospital every year and bring them a turkey dinner. What a blessing for them and a good reminder for me of how blessed I am. Sadie and Daddy have headed over to Oma and Opa's for a break from the hospital and Hope is having a nice long nap in her crib beside me. What a gift to have her here with us for Christmas. In this moment, nothing else seems to matter.