Finding Strength in Unexpected Places
Kaytee was hidden by her brother Kathen in the womb and her heart defect was not discovered until a few days after their birth. Once tests confirmed Hypo Plastic Left Heart Syndrome she was immediately CareFlighted to
Until that day, Nicole and Jeremey Clement had no idea the emotional rollercoaster the birth of their first children would put them on. Through her tears Nicole explains, “It’s difficult seeing your baby on a respirator and all kinds of tubes. You can’t pick her up, feed her, hold her … comfort her.”
The Clement family was torn between the happiness of their perfectly healthy son and the fear and anxiety of their precious daughter who had been given a 30% chance of living past 2 months. “Every fear you could possibly think of, I had,” Nicole explained.
“When I first arrived at the Ronald McDonald House I was scared to talk to the other families at the House. My own self-pity was so great. I didn’t want anyone to feel sorry for me because I knew they had their own problems.”
Once Nicole and Jeremey got through their daughter’s first surgery and faced many difficult decisions in her care, they quickly learned that it was through talking and bonding with other families that they received the strength they needed to overcome their fears. When Kaytee was barely 7 months old, they drew upon this strength and agreed to a surgery with a 50/50 percent survival rate. Not only did Kaytee survive, but she’s thriving and a few short weeks after her surgery they are packing up to go home.
Although home is a welcome sight after being here for 8 months, Jeremy tells us “The Ronald McDonald House is a godsend. Everyone here goes above and beyond. The kind words. The helpfulness. When you arrive you’re welcomed with open arms and treated like family. You all don’t have to do what you’re doing – what you’re doing is beyond human compassion.”
The Mesquite Fire Department Serves the Ronald McDonald House
-- In More Ways Than One!
We are so grateful for the ongoing support and generosity of the Mesquire Fire Department who recently came to the House for the second year to serve dinner and entertain our families with a string quartet and pipe and drum corp. The truck and uniform are always a HUGE hit. This year they donated a beautiful, handmade cabinet -- a replica of the cabinet where real firemen store their gear -- and three child-size uniforms for the kids to play with. They also brought a generous donation of wish list items. Click here to see a slide show of their visit.
If that's not enough, a few weeks later, they invited RMHD staff to their station to enjoy a homecooked meal and a tour. We learned all kinds of things we didn't know about the Fire Department.
Did you know?
Although 9-1-1 calls, such as fires and medical emergencies, are the main reasons for the justification of firefighters, we should not limit the value they provide to the community to only life or death situations.
The Mesquite Fire Department continues to take advantage of slow days and other down times to interact with the public and to give back to the community. Did you know that you can drop by the fire station and get your blood pressure checked as often as you would like? They will give you a tour of the station, show you the truck and ems equipment, help with child car seat instillation and inspection, offer neighborhood meeting space, citizen’s emergency response training, come to your neighborhood and conduct home inspections and even help with smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detector installations. As you can see, there are many things the Fire Department offers to all of us and the benefits are many, in turn, let’s not forget to support them!