On Dec. 5, 2011 the DCC went on our annual holiday visits to see the children and their families who are currently patients at several of the Dallas area hospitals. I was fortunate to be a part of the Medical City group, where the staff and everyone there were so helpful with the entire process.
We arrived at the hospital by bus with the players (who by the way listened to Adele on the way … not what you would expect from a group of large football players!). Once we got there, we were taken to a conference room where we decided who would go where with what players. Each group was assigned to a specific section of the hospital in which they would be escorted from room to room to visit with all of the patients.
I was first sent to the children’s playroom, but ended up just being a floater and anytime they needed someone to go to a new section to say hello to a child, I would go. It was really encouraging to visit each room and see the way the kids would light up when they saw the players coming to see them! Each child was given a special Cowboys stocking filled with goodies, and then we would sign photographs for them. Some of the boys even got to hang out in the teen room and play Madden with the players. How cool is that?
Each child or teenager that we met had a different spark. They all had something special about them that made them unique. One little girl, Emma, had the most adorable smile I have ever seen. She was so pumped about the rocking chair she found in the playroom, that she could hardly even talk to the players. She was such a sweetheart!
Later on in the day we met a 17-year-old named Rachel, who had the same cheerful air about her. She just smiled and laughed the entire time, which isn’t easy when you are missing out on high school. I hope our short room visit was enough to keep her spirits up for a bit, because she definitely raised mine with her fun personality and joyful attitude.
It’s children like that, constantly smiling regardless of how much they are going through, who are the bright lights in a dark room. Each and every person that we came across yesterday made me so happy and thankful to be in the position I’m in. To be given the opportunity to make someone smile is the best job anyone could ever ask for, and I am so lucky to have that luxury. Just knowing that we can make someone’s day just a tiny bit better is why we’re all here.