This weekend, we attended the Griese, Hutchinson, Woodson “Champions for Children” gala at the University of Michigan. It is a fundraiser for C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital and the Charles Woodson Clinical Research Fund. Last year, my daughter Faith was the guest of honor. She was there as a representative of the many children at Mott who have a disease for which there is no cure.
Last year she was given a pass by her doctors to leave the hospital for the evening to attend the gala. She had just had most of her colon removed and she had to have another surgery before she was able to be discharged from the hospital. I remember being skeptical that it was a good idea for her to attend. Her doctors had to change her total parenteral nutrition schedule, and I was worried that she would get too tired.
The morning of the gala, however, Charles Woodson came to see her in the hospital. That changed everything. I knew from that moment it was going to be a great night for her. She had an instant connection with Charles, and finally – after a few long weeks in the hospital – she was starting to act like herself.
As magical as the night was, I left that evening and went back to the hospital to face the reality that we deal with every day. Even though Faith had been invited to attend because of her disease, I remember wishing that night that Faith had a disease that wasn’t so rare. So that I could feel more hopeful for a cure for her.