Giovanna was asked to make an encore performance at the annual Shrine Hospital day.  This hospital serves about 6-7 states and they bring in the Shriners from the states that it serves.  They give tours of the hospital and give updates about the hospital and what’s new.  There are generally about 300 people at this event.

This year was a bit more intimidating for Giovanna.  She wasn’t so sure she wanted to stand in front of everyone again.  However she is a real trooper and has a smile that just lights up the room – or in this case tent!  She was asked a few simple questions and then I had a chance to say thank you to this group of men for all the work they do to make it possible to get free medical care.

Giovanna’s story is different than most other patients – she was chosen to be adopted along with her special needs.  Most families don’t have this choice.  It is always good to reflect on the precious gift that she is to this family – especially when things are tough and surgeries are looming!

After the “Formal” presentations, there was some fun for the kids – cover Dr. G. with silly string.  Giovanna did not use hers to cover Dr. G., but laughed as the others did.  There was also a pie throwing booth.  For a $1 you could throw a whipped cream pie in the face of various medical staff.  Giovanna was asked, but her response was, “No I don’t – not nice!”  One of the staff members from the hospital remarked, “she is just so sweet she won’t do it.”  Dr. G. loves this kind of thing.  I will post pictures later once I get them from the Hopsital staff.

As a runner, I have learned that with out the support of my family and friends, it would be hard to train and run a marathon.  They provide the encouragement and space needed to train.  They also tell me when my body needs a rest.  The same could be said of walking the path with a child that has special needs.  Without the staff at the Shrine Hospital, it would be a much harder walk.  They love these kids and do what they can to make trips to the hospital special and fun.  The work hard at managing pain and helping to minimize the nausea and vomiting that can follow surgery.

Many thanks go up to the Lord for the work of the staff at the Hospital!

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