Friday, August 6, 2010

A million thank-you's

Just wanted to share with all of you a letter I sent to the CTICU last week. Wanted to really acknowledge how hard they worked to help get Bodie better - and why we consider them famly. :-)

To the amazing doctors and nurses of the CHLA CTICU:

We just wanted to drop you a quick note (with pictures, of course!) to update you on Bodie. He is LOVING life on the outside! And we are loving having him home. Since he’s been home, he’s been gaining well, satting well in the 80’s, has stopped sweating and been impressing us all with how well he’s adjusted. (He’s now over 5.7 kilos, which was a huge step considering how hard you all worked with us to get him over 4.7!) He’s teething like nobody’s business and is fairly miserable because of that (had 2 teeth pop through just in the week we got home from the hospital) – but you all know how Bodie is. If there’s an easy way to do something, he’s not interested. He wants to do it the hardest way possible, so if that means having ALL of his teeth come through at once, so be it! (but if the worst thing we’re dealing with right now is teething, we’ll take it)

We wanted to let you know how special you all were to us during Bodie’s extended stays at CHLA. We know we will be back there soon for his Glenn (if not sooner) (don’t have a date yet, but we know Bodie will let us know when that time comes) and we are hoping this next stay is shorter than the last. But we’re really loving our time away for the moment. As we’ve had time away to reflect, we wanted to give a few special thank-you’s. I know it may seem weird to be doing this now, since we’ll be back again so soon, but we feel it’s never too soon to express our gratefulness to others in our life.

Dr. Starnes (Bodie's surgeon): thank you for operating on Bodie’s “bizarre” little heart more than once. We know Bodie is unique (we understand that’s the nice term) and we can never thank you enough for rising to the challenge each time in deciding how best to work with his little heart. You have given more to our family than you can even fathom.

Dr. Mormisato (Critical Care Attending and Head of CTICU): ah, Bodie has such a special relationship with you. You have had the unfortunate privilege of being there every time Bodie came in at his absolute worst, and you have always had the wisdom to treat him best so that his little body could bounce back at superhuman speed. We are so hopeful that Bodie’s days of coming to you at his worst are behind us.

Drs. Rivera (Critical Care Attending) and Bar-Cohen (Electropysiologist): you two will always hold a special place in our heart. You saved Bodie’s life, by piecing together a puzzle no one else had been able to: thinking to pace Bodie. And managing to keep me calm in the room when it happened. Enough said.

Dr. Wetzel (Cardiology Attending): thank you for pushing the envelope, and Bodie’s heart, to create a scenario I never thought possible. Because of your weaning the Milrinone when you did, and pushing Bodie, he’s now been home 2 weeks and really thriving. We don’t know how long we’ll have at home with him before the Glenn, but honestly, the little time we’ve already had has been more than worth it. This has been such a gift and we are so grateful.

Drs. Del Castillo, Epstein and Hastings (Critical Care Attendings): you three always took such wonderful care of Bodie and really involved us in his care and the decisions you were making for him. I always knew he was in good hands when any of you were on.

Dr. Badran (Cardiologist and Cath Lab Doctor): thank you for always taking such a personal interest in Bodie, and in keeping me involved in his treatment. I had always heard you were amazing in the cath lab, and after having you do Bodie’s cath, I understand why all of the parents rave about you. You really have a gift – not just to do caths extremely well, but to bring the parents in as well. You really educated me and I so appreciate that.

The incredible Nurse Practitioners (Carol, Caroline, Karen, Kirsty, Kristen and Lillian (hope I got you all!)): I think you all know how much we loved you (how could you not given that I was petitioning anyone who would listen to get Bodie on your service?). THANK YOU for always checking in on Bodie and making sure he was doing ok. He loves you all almost as much as we do. The continuity of care you provide to parents is unbelievable.

All of the nurses (I think Bodie had all of you at one point or another!!!), but especially Andrea (thank you for taking such amazing care of Bodie the weekend we went out of town – it was only because of your great updates that I was able to relax and enjoy time out of the CTICU), Sunita (I truly felt like Bodie could not have been in better hands at night – I think you felt like he wasn’t just our baby, but yours as well ), Rosie (oh boy, does Bodie love you – he would turn and start smiling at just the sound of your voice – that’s how we knew we had a great nurse!), and Thu, Sandra, Lucy and Amy (thank you not just for caring about Bodie, but our entire family (including big sister Sierra) as well).

I know there’s a million other people I’m leaving out (including all of the amazing fellows (especially Shek!) and cardiologists), but suffice it to say that the CTICU at CHLA is an incredible place. You’re in the business of making miracles happen, yes, but even more than that, you’re in the business of holding families together while they’re waiting on those miracles. Thank you for everything you have done for our family…and we’ll see you soon!

God’s Blessings and ours,
Amy, Dusk, Sierra & Bodie Bennett


  1. my bodie. we love you and pray for you daily. sending you loads of swedish love! :O) xoxoxoxo: nairi, michael and kids

  2. Beautiful letter, Amy. Although, I'm sure they expect no thank you's, it's always nice to recieve them. They really are in the business of making miracles happen, and I'm so glad that Bodie (and your family) has been in such good hands. You and your family are never far from my prayers.
    :) much love,

  3. PERFECTLY said Amy. I ditto all of those thank yous. the drs and nurses of the CTICU at CHLA will be in my heart forever. they are true heros. xxxx