This past Saturday morning Tiara had a big surprise.
Avalon, a 6th grader at Newport Heights Elementary, my Alma mater, came over to our house with her Mom, Gina and brought with them boxes and boxes and boxes of crayons. WOW! Tiara was so excited she kept saying “thank you, thank you, your welcome, Oh My God!” She was so overwhelmed she wasn’t sure what to do except repeat those phrases over and over again and then start ripping open the boxes as fast as she could, before I could get to them and hide them away.
Gina and I went to school together from Kindergarten through 12th grade and through the years we have seen each other while at swim lessons, swim team and around the neighborhood with our girls. Gina reads my blog and shared with Avalon, Tiara’s love of crayons and Avalon came up with the idea of collecting crayons for Tiara from all the 6th graders at her the school. I am pretty sure each kid brought more than 1 box because there was so many boxes, I couldn’t count them fast enough without Tiara trying to steal them all, so I gave up. I did count at least 60 boxes and that was in one bag, so I am guessing she received over a 100 boxes from the 6th graders at Newport Heights!!!
I splurged and gave her 10 boxes over the weekend because she was so excited. I explained why she had received all the crayons even though she didn’t understand, she was thrilled. Some of the kids wrote the cutest, kindest, most thoughtful, sincere cards. I read the cards to her over and over again because she loves when people read to her, especially when the message is directed to her specifically. She likes everything to be about her at all times.
Someone also made her this super cool crayon pillow, that she loved. I let her keep it on the couch in her favorite spot, where she spends most of her day, even though it doesn’t match the family room decor. Some things are more important than matching the decor! I also love to look at the pillow because it reminds me of how much people really care about Tiara, her struggles and our family.
People can be so kind, loving and giving and it warms my heart to know that Tiara brings that out in people. It used to be hard for me to accept gifts from people on Tiara’s behalf. I will never the forget the first time she was in the hospital and a volunteer brought her in a new doll. She didn’t play with dolls, and was totally out of it so I thought they should give the doll to another child, who was more needy. I declined the gift on her behalf and after they left the room I kept wondering why they brought my child a doll?
Thinking back, declining the gift probably wasn’t the right thing to do, but at the moment I was confused as to why someone was giving my child a gift. I guess I didn’t want to face the reality that it was because she was in a children’s hospital with tumors in her brain and heart and having seizures. I didn’t want to be that family you pity or feel sorry for, my child wasn’t that sick. Well, apparently she was and still is that sick, so I have learned to put aside my own stuff to allow others to do nice things for Tiara. She loves the crayons and I am grateful to live in this community surrounded by such generous and thoughtful people.
Thank you to all the children and their families who participated in donating crayons for Tiara. You brought lots of smiles to her face!