Ronald McDonald House is an incredible place. It's home from home and a much needed escape from the ward. I sleep there, cook meals there and bring Wills over when we have periods off treatments and with no physio or other therapies going on. Here he can play with their vast collection of wooden railway while I make lunch and get some work done (much easier now with the WIFI too). It's as close to being at home as it gets when you are living in hospital in another city. McDonald House is not funded by McDonalds. It's a charity and one that makes a huge difference keeping families like ours together when we need each other the most. The rest of the family can come and stay there too as often as they can and when my girls were younger we all moved up here together. Now they are older, in critical exam years and need to stay in their own schools. I really miss they days we were all up here together.
While we were chilling at Ronald McDonald House on Monday we were called back to the ward. William has been in a cubicle since we got here as they needed to rule out infectious viruses and infections. He is clear of these now and I knew we would be one of the first out of the cubicle if it was needed. We had to come straight over and pack up our six weeks worth of things, take the cards off the walls and move. I am a bit of a nester and I need to make a little home for us when we are in hospital. We used to live for months in Chelsea and Westminster Hospital which was very close to a Cath Kidston shop. We had an end bay space with a window cill and that was always organised with piles of books and Cath Kidston tins bought in sales. If I could have candles and incense in our hospital and Ronald McDonald rooms I would! I miss the smell of incense so much I'm tempted to buy some just to smell unlit. I've built a literal grotto when we've been in hospital over Christmas. I really need to make our clinical environment as homely as possible.
It felt a huge upheaval to pack up. I had created a home for us in that little room. A home where we could shut the door on the ward when we snuggled up to watch a film and it was just us. A home where we could live to William's routines as much as possible without the ward hustle and bustle. William has Asperger Syndrome so routine is paramount to him and he gets very anxious when it is upset. Wills stomped into the ward demanding who had 'thrown him out of his room' and insisting he was not moving. I was really worried he would have a huge meltdown but he settled quite quickly. We have a window cill so I have a little pile of his books there and my room over at the Ronald McDonald house has a pile of my own, together with a few photos. I have some little nest and it's really quite nice being out on the ward with more people to talk to.