I haven't blogged in a bit (vacation last week, and crazy busy at work this week, lots of posts brewing) but couldn't let today go by without an entry. Today, November 11, Madeline Alice Spohr would have been 2 years old. But she died in April, at only 17 months old. I first heard of Maddie when her mom spoke, just weeks after her death, at the March of Dimes walk that Brian, Sammie and I walked in. I was so moved by her speech. In fact, I wrote about it in my very first blog entry. And though I never met Maddie, I've since found her mom's blog, and I read it daily. This little girl that I never met (and her beautiful, eloquent mother) have been such an inspiration to me. On days that I feel overcome by worry, or overwhelmed by the OT/PT sessions that Sammie has each week, I remember Heather, Maddie's mom's, speech at the March of Dimes Walk. She said that Maddie handled her twice daily breathing treatments that she had for her entire life "with grace," and that they just looked at them as "minor inconveniences on her way to conquering the world." And those words never fail me . . . they give me the inspiration I need to tackle one more OT session, one more PT session, and they make me oh so grateful to have my beautiful Bean in my life. To be able to hug her, squeeze her, and giggle with her. I wish that Heather could still do the same with Maddie.
Maddie was born at 29 weeks -- the same gestational age at which I first went into labor with Sammie B. Who knows what would have happened had the medication and bed rest not allowed me to keep Sammie B in for another few weeks. It doesn't matter. I know that . . . I can't answer those "what-ifs" because the only story that matters is the story Sammie B has. Not the ones she could have had (that goes for the "what if she'd been born earlier" as well as the "what if she'd been born just a few weeks later" what-ifs; because I often allow myself to wonder that as well, which isn't anymore productive).
So tonight, Maddie, I'm thinking of you, and your family. And tonight, I wear my purple March of Dimes shirt in honor of you. May one day all babies be born healthy.