It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! Well…besides the sunshine and the 80 degree weather, but such is life in South Florida. Sometimes it’s hard to keep track of the changing seasons, as they tend to all run into each other. However! The past few evenings/nights have been downright chilly! Last night we actually had to shut the windows a little because it was so cold, even with our feather duvet on our bed! Woah Florida, you’re really bringing winter this year!! 😉
Even with the perfect beach weather in December we still try to fill the house with a cozy Christmas feel. Holiday candles burning, Christmas music on the Pandora station 24/7 and lit up Christmas trees. I’ve got a stack of Christmas cards sitting on the coffee table that I’m determined to get out by the end of the week so at least most of them can get to where they are heading before Christmas Day. I’m always so good with being on top of the actual ordering of the Christmas cards, but then I down right stink at actually getting them out on time. It always comes down to running out of stamps. And then it takes me a week to remember to get more at the post office or grocery store. Why don’t I stock up on stamps BEFORE it’s time to send the cards out, you may ask? Well, that would obviously make logical sense, but sadly I run into the same problem year after year.
These past few weeks have been INSANE at work. It’s hard to explain just what being a child life specialist means during the month of December. I don’t think anyone can fully grasp the craziness unless you yourself are a child life specialist. But I’ll try to break it down for you. Imagine hundreds of people, churches, organizations, etc calling you to set up a date and time to come in for an activity, performance, or just to hand out gifts. And then imagine, once your calendar is booked with said groups, still getting call after call from upset people who feel you are being a Scrooge for not letting them come in to visit with the patients. And then imagine donation after donation being dropped off. Seriously, the moment we are called down to security (frantically searching for a flat bed along the way), load up, and are on our way to bring the toys to our storage room, we are called down yet again to pick up more toys. And then, on top of all this, we still have our normal units and patient load to take care of on a daily basis. As well as our other side jobs (like pet therapy) on top of it all. I come home from work on a daily basis and collapse on the couch, not wanting to move or look at another toy for the rest of the day. Let me say this, as CRAZY as it is, we LOVE the joy it brings to our patients, and, in the end, that’s all that matters. Although I get stomach ache stressed at the 19th phone call of the day from some upset church group that I have to tell we don’t have space for, I still love my job. I love seeing a random group of employees from some bank company glow with excitement as they decorate stockings in the playroom, I love seeing a patient’s face light up with glee as they watch a Christmas musical performance, I love to see a parent’s eyes fill with tears when their child is handed that one toy they’ve been asking for all season; I love it all. But, let me tell you, it is EXHAUSTING and I can’t say I won’t be happy once December 26th rolls around! I’m working part day on Christmas this year and I am psyched. It might sound weird that someone is actually excited to work on Christmas, but, let me tell you, it’s going to be a great day. We have this wonderful Santa that has been coming in for years and we get to spend the day being Santa’s elves and walking him around to visit and give gifts to every single child and sibling in the hospital. And I am so excited that I get to be a part of the joy Santa will be bringing to those kiddos on Christmas Day!
And then we are off to VT the day after Christmas to see my family and (hopefully) meet my sister and her husband’s new little bundle of Christmas joy! She is due this Friday and we are all waiting on pins and needles for her to make her grand arrival!
Until then I plan on running around the hospital while trying not to lose my sanity under our ever expanding pile of Barbie dolls…..