Now be honest. What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the word tough???
Here are some of the responses that we received, just to warn you some are pretty “interesting”:
Male Sales Professional: FORD
Male Entrepreneur: Mike Ditka
Male Digital Specialist: Strong
Female Dietitian: Hard
Female Office Manager: Football
Female Project Manager: Goals
Male Marketing Professional: Nails
Female Health Researcher: Superheroes
Female Accountant: Women
Male College Student: Having Heart
Male Maintenance Engineer: Myself
Female Dental Hygienist: Strength
Female Fashion Expert: Sand Paper
Female Marketing Professional: Challenges
Male Law Student: Ndamukong Suh
Now for us, we think of PEDIATRIC PATIENTS.
Ebbs and flows.
Often during volunteer shifts in the Family Life Center (aka Playroom) one can see the room packed with kids while at other times it’s nearly empty. It is unclear which patient is accompanied by which adult until the child has a reaction to their treatment or are visibly uncomfortable.
During a recent visit we were able to see consistent changes in the amount of children in the playroom. There were some siblings and/or patients who were too scared to come out of the corner. While there were others who were focused on breaking the world record for the amount of rubber balls one could shoot down the custom penguin slide within 30 seconds (world record is 17). Then there were other pediatric patients who were simply enjoying themselves while painting special pictures and creating wooden artwork.
On September 15th there was a young girl proudly wearing her pink University of Michigan shirt while painting a special woodblock. From a distance you could see her smile and work, using detailed strokes with her thin paint brush. From a slight distance her parents watched proudly. When you got closer to the patient one could see red blisters or sore spots on her arms and face. Even with that pain she was tough enough to focus on her masterpiece.
There was another family from Cleveland – Ohio State fans- who were peacefully watching the Cleveland Browns game on a tablet. Only in a large pediatric hospital’s packed playroom can you find Michigan and Ohio Statefans focused on brightening up each other’s spirits rather than proving who’s more dominant.
Based on these kids ability to focus on painting woodblocks, playing with small toys, or even simply holding their family while smiling, it’s clear…….THEY ARE THE DEFINITION OF TOUGH, STRONG AND RESILIENT combined.