Jean had gone to Walgreens and printed out a ton of pictures of Courage Tiger (walking next to me) and I for me to sign and give out to the families we met today. It was so cute! I loved it; people were putting it in their collection for photo albums or scrapbooks. Usually I bring 30 beads to visits and only end up giving out a few and leaving the rest with the hospital. However this morning I gave out nearly all of them! I was already tired by lunch time, but a nice sandwich and a bowl of hot soup helped pick me up again. The flourless-chocolate torte I shared with Jean didn’t hurt either… We also spent time packaging up more of my beads since we would probably be seeing more kids at Egleston than we did at Scottish.
After lunch, we all headed to Egleston where we would end up spending the rest of the afternoon, and evening. I finally got to meet Liz, a long time follower on Facebook, and it was such an honor; she brought her son’s beads to share with me and there were so many, it was amazing and very touching. She stayed all day, and her husband came to show his support as well.
We started the afternoon in the Seacrest radio studio. Which was so amazing! --- Ryan Seacrest started a foundation to open up radio stations in Children’s hospitals throughout the country, where kids can come and deejay and celebrates can come and do interviews and do meet-n-greets with the patients--- I did a interview with the station and left one of my pictures to put on their wall. During the radio interview, I was asked about all my bracelets I was wearing. That got me pretty choked up, because for me, I guess these bracelets would be my beads. Each one was given to me by a family wither either a children still fighting his or her battle, or, their child lost his or her fight, and the family asked me to wear the bracelet in honor and memory of their child and asked me to carry it all the way to the ocean in Georgia. There are also a few given to me by fire departments or police officers and those mark miles along my route. I also have a one from a woman who worked at a hotel I stayed at, and she gave me a bracelet to protect me on the rest of my journey. I also have a friendship bracelet made by a cute little girl I met at a EMS station who wanted to share something with me, but didn’t have any money to give me, Sooooo, I have a lot of bracelets, and they all are very special, with deep, powerful, individual meanings.
We stayed at the hospital until 6 PM with nonstop visiting with children and their families. Some of it was rather emotional, and people were so excited to meet Jean and be able to thank her for everything she has done for them. There were lots and lots of hugs shared, as well as a few tears. Needless to say, I was absolutely exhausted by the time we left. I went back to the hotel for a few minutes before walking down to the restaurant where I would be meeting Jean and Robert and his wife (he came with us to the hospitals). We had a great dinner with mussels and curry fries and a lamb sandwich and squash, with an Irish coffee and crème burlee for dessert! Like I said, what a day.