As the old saying goes “It always happens to the best people.”

This is something I believe that everyone that has a loved one in the hospital says.

We all want the best care for our loved ones and to know that they feel like they are at home when they are in the healthcare system, especially for extended stays.

We want to know that our healthcare systems are equipped with the proper medical equipment for whatever foreseen or unforeseen treatment demands. Just recently, one of my own was faced with the unforeseen battle that placed her father in the “extended stay”. This was a wakeup call for everyone around us, so I wanted to share this story. Her father was mixing pool chemicals and they exploded and before we knew it, he was rushed to the hospital and before the blink of an eye was in ICU.

The ICU is often misunderstood. Families just want to be near their loved ones but the staff has rules that restrict visiting hours so they can focus on the patient. When this happens, family members are often at the hospital for hours and sometimes even days.

Families are confronted with waiting rooms, eating at the hospital and actually allowing the hospital to become a second home for their stay also. Healthcare professionals are not only caring for the patient but are placed in situations that they become emotionally attached and try to be there for the patients and the families, and we sometimes take for granted the multitude of responsibilities the staff has.

So, during this Holiday Season, I believe that we need to send out a message of thanks to our healthcare professionals. These individuals that have entered our life for the unforeseen and have stepped forward with the power of the education they hold and duty they carry to make sure we are all a priority.

The lessons we have learned and shared from this experience are many—miracles do happen, that when there is little hope, we have our healthcare systems in place and prepared to take measures necessary. And of course we want to share to be cautious when mixing chemicals. Most important during this Holiday Season, count our blessings, each and every one!