This post was sponsored by Floating Hospital for Children as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central. Thank you for supporting brands that support my blog.
As you may have noticed lately, I have this theme on the brain lately – “You don’t have to be big to be strong.” After over three weeks in the NICU, my nephew Parker Steven came home for the first time today. Now the real adventure begins.
It’s funny to me – this whole life cosmic timing thing – that I originally knew I wanted to write about the Floating Hospital for Children at Tufts Medical Center ages ago. It was before Parker was born two months early. I just knew I had so many stories in my brain – both big and small – of children, both big and small, whose fight began sooner than it should. There’s my Des, who spent ten days in two hospitals for suspected infection and oxygen saturation issues. There’s a friend whose toddler beat cancer. Twice. There are the babies born too soon, but to great care. They’re not just our kids. They’re our inspiration.
Floating Hospital is committed to creating a child-friendly environment to help kids feel strong when they’re scared, and to do this, they offer courage in the form of entertainment. When a child is at a clinic visit, or is admitted to the hospital, Floating Hospital wants kids to feel strong when they might be scared. They created The Toughlings, which are a group of animals who are small but mighty, just like Floating Hospital kids. The Toughlings like to remind patients that they are also big and strong, and can be found in the elevator banks throughout the hospital. Buff is a badger, Elbo is an octopus, Mica is an ant, Cozi is a turtle, and Sage is an owl. The Toughlings are also on stickers that are available for patients in clinics.
Want to hear some cool things about Floating Hospital? There are things I didn’t even know! There are mini-horse visits to the inpatient floors monthly. (mini horses!?!) There are pet therapy dogs, and Child Life Services. Child Life Services help children deal with the stress of hospitalization through play. When Scarlet was admitted to the hospital the day before her first birthday, and needed to be put to sleep for micro-stitches on her face, Child Life Services gave us peace and comfort. They gave her gifts she still plays with. I am forever grateful for their thoughtfulness and service during our hospital stay.
Floating Hospital was initiated in 1948 to help patients and their families cope with the stress of illness, injury, disability, and hospitalization through a range of services. Support groups, play, overnight privileges for parents, and tutoring services were introduced. An important part of Floating Hospital is play – because it’s a vital component in children’s lives, and a way for them to communicate, gain a sense of master and control, learn to cope with stress, and learn to express their feelings.
Floating Hospital is dedicated to children being seen quickly, no matter the time of day, and they offer a lot of advantages to achieving this. The Pediatric Emergency Department is operational around the clock. There’s a child-centered environment with a play area waiting room and five soothing, healing, and child-appropriate dedicated rooms. The hospital is staffed with a pediatric emergency nurse, a pediatric technician, and there are Child Life specialists on staff from 10:00am – 2:00pm. If there is a non life-threatening emergency, Floating Hospital offers InQuicker – that allows parents to check-in for an estimated treatment time, rather than waiting in a Boston ER waiting room. You and your child can experience a unique approach to care, conveniently close to home. The staff works every day to make a positive difference in children’s lives.