Friday, March 18, 2011

Thank you, thank you...

This morning, the leadership team and administrators of Allegiance Health took some time to honor the emergency room and labor & delivery staff members who were on duty on February 5. They allowed me to speak for a few minutes. Below is the text of my short speech. It meant a lot to me to be able to thank these people in front of their administrators and leadership team.

"Everything changed on February 5th. Amidst the chaos and mayhem, decisions had to be made; decisions that I, and my family, could not make. Decisions that changed so many lives forever.  Today, I want to make sure you know how thankful I am for the roll you all played in that day, and for the decisions you made.

My wife’s journey on this earth ended on that icy highway, long before she ever made it to the hospital. And yet, facing unbeatable odds, you worked as hard and as long as you could to try to reverse things. For me, the fact that you were still trying to revive her, to keep her here almost 90 minutes after the accident, when I was finally wheeled into her room, strapped to a backboard on a stretcher, means the world to me. It shows how much you cared. It shows me how deep the loss would hurt everyone in that room.

Under those circumstances, no one could have blamed you for giving up sooner. No one could have blamed you for just accepting the inevitable, but you chose to keep trying, long after trying was required. Thank you for living out hope when there was no hope. Your actions, and the decisions you made, helped me as my heart had to reconcile what my mind already knew to be true.

Of course, this story does not end there. Sara was only 18 days away from the expected due date of our first child. My daughter, Miranda, was delivered without a heartbeat, without breath. Her story could have just as easily ended right there. But you chose a different path. You made a decision to revive her to try to keep her here. Today, I want you to know you should never, ever, second-guess that decision. It was the right decision. It was a decision that gave her short time on earth purpose and meaning.  It was a decision that meant Miranda was not just a baby, stillborn as part of an unspeakable tragedy. It was a decision that gave me three precious days with my little girl. I never would have gotten to hold her like I did, to kiss her soft pink skin, wrap her tiny little fingers around my finger, or introduce her to so many of my family and friends. It was a decision that made me a daddy, and made her daddy’s little girl. Your decision gave me a priceless gift, and I can’t thank you enough for that.

Today, nearly 6 weeks after that fateful day, I’m still surprised at how my quiet wife and my precious little girl have impacted this community and this world. You are part of that impact, and your leadership team and administrators are, and should be, proud of you. So I say thank you, thank you, from the bottom of my broken heart, thank you for everything you did for them and for me."