Charlotte's Journey Home

Just a Regular Kid, Sort Of

It’s Almost Moving Day! Prepare to be AMAZED.

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Not our moving day. That’s not for another (gasp) 3 weeks or so. But, Children’s Memorial Hospital will be moving to its new home in the Streeterville neighborhood of Chicago on June 9.

On Monday, June 4, the ribbon was cut on the new building and CMH officially became the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.  Though we didn’t attend that ribbon-cutting, Charlotte and I did get stuck in the traffic it created while we were in town on a house-hunting trip.

ABCNews Chicago covered the event. Please click here to check out the opening, and even more interesting, the plans to move up to 200 critically ill patients about 3 miles down the road in 20+ ambulances on Saturday. It’s extraordinary.

While we are thrilled about the opening of the new hospital, and proud to have played a small role through the Children’s Service Board, we recognize how many parents and families mourn the loss of the facility in which they saw their child’s last smile or held a beloved baby through a last breath.  As I wrote to Mary Tyler Mom in response to her loving elegy for the old CMH, the hand that her Donna saw as a beacon of hope will now light up Streeterville in a vivid tribute to the families and children whose lives have been touched since Julia Foster Porter opened an 8-bed hospital cottage, the Maurice Porter Memorial, at Halsted and Belden.

What better tribute to the memory of Ms. Porter, and of the children who passed through those hallowed halls, than to celebrate 125 years of pediatric medical excellence with the opening of the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago?  I think Ms. Porter would approve.

Thank you, Team Charlotte, for your unflagging support of our family’s journey. Charlotte is happy to be “going home” to Chicago and to “her” hospital.

No mention of the hospital can be complete without a pitch. Here’s a link to Team Charlotte’s page at Give Kids a Hand. To date, you have helped me raise $7,155 for Lurie’s. In honor of MTM’s Donna and Ms. Porter and all who dared to dream that pediatric medical excellence had a home in Chicago, won’t you help me make it an even $10,000?

Keep scrolling for some Children’s Memorial Hospital memories:

Where we began. May 10 (0r so) 2005. Before surgery.
May 16, 2005 after surgery. That’s Charlotte under all those tubes and wires.

Charlotte (18 months) “poses” for an x-ray. They only way we could get her to stop crying was to have her smile for the camera. (2007)



Nurse Julie with sleepy Charlotte pre-second surgery. (2007) 
The only good thing about Radiology’s waiting area…the kinetic sculpture. 

Fascinated by the bandaid over her blood draw poke. Last bandaid Charlotte tolerated, I think.

Waiting (and waiting) for Dr. Backer to come get her for surgery.  Ultimately, we went back the next day. Charlotte was a trooper.

Post-op, 2007.

Uncle Hal just couldn’t stay away (2007).

The PICU Guardians. Yes, Bubba used to be a lovely (clean) golden color and sit up straight (2005).

Lung scan with IV (and video to watch). Not fun. (2008)
Certificate of Bravery for above. Charlotte rocks. And CMH staff knows how to help her through it all.


 Charlotte helps Dance Marathon Chicago get psyched (2010). She loves “her” hospital and likes helping raise money for it.

Spring, 2010.
Lurie Children’s Hospital Lego(tm) Structure, Children’s Service Board Security Desk, 11th floor, Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital (2012)

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Author: Culture Bean

I am a mother, a pre-published children's author, and a published academic. I am also a "mommy blogger," though I hate the term. My passions are reading and writing. As a professor, I strive to help my students think critically about the media and culture with which they engage. I've started this blog because it's time I put my money where my mouth is!

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