Chaz and I were in disbelief that our last night at Fisher House-WRAMC was finally here. So last night we took the girls on a walk around the campus as kind of a last thing to do before we go. I wanted to make sure and take pics before the campus was altered.
As a history major, it breaks my heart to see all of this history be taken away. I know there's a good reason for it, but it still makes it hard for me. So much has happened at this hospital. So many veterans have come here and have been healed which is what Walter Reed himself wanted. I know they had a hugs scandal here years ago and I am pleased to report I see what good came out of that. This hospital and it's staff are amazing. I am just so happy they are all going to Bethesda with us!
Now on to Fisher House, gees where to I begin. The Fisher Foundation is simply incredible. It started because a man saw a need to help veterans. Now they do so much more. The original idea of just giving them a home away from home is now so much more than that. They have Hero Miles, which flies military families to be together in a time of need. (Which happens to be my favorite part of the program). Yes I am biased but they did enable me to fly back and forth every week to be with Chaz and the girls. Thanks to Hero Miles our emergency didn't have to suffer thanks to all of this craziness.
Fisher House gives away money to other non-profits, hosts teams for the Army Ten Miler and Marine Corps Marathon. I am just skimming the surface on this great organization. Please go read more about them at FisherHouse.org when you can.
Now back to the houses. Our first house held 8 families and the second one we stayed in I think holds 10 or 12. That may sound like a lot, but because Fisher has this formula down it works. These houses are phenomenal. They are beautiful and spacious and organized. We really have a home away from home. And then they provide all our needs, toliet paper, paper towels, trash bags, etc. And then they provide our wants computers in every room, cable, water cooler, food and they allow other non-profits to come in and fed us all the time.
We are so thankful to the Fisher Foundation that thank you will never seem like enough. This is why we have agree to speak on their behalf whenever needed. We have already done a magazine article for them. You can see this at http://issuu.com/fisherhouse/docs/patriot_fisherhouse_2011_winterspring on page 18-19. We attended the Congressional Cupcake Wars and got to be present to see them receive at $10,000 check. Tomorrow we met the Foundation chair for breakfast at the house I am currently cleaning so we can check out.
We moved in March of 2011 and we leave today. It is bittersweet. To me it is like graduation day. You are so excited for the future, but don't want to leave your friends. There are so many that I know I will stay in touch with. We have touched each other lives and we are on this journey to healing together.
Now we have moved on to the apartments at 1200 EastWest Highway in Silver Springs, MD. Currently there are 20 wounded warriors and their NMAs and/or families there. Chaz is kicking a lot of ass, but he still has a very long road to be finished with his recovery. Since we don't know how long we will be in MD we took the apartment. We loved staying at Fisher House, but we need a place of our own. We are grown-ups after all. I guess you could say we graduated to the college level now. And yes for those who are curious, the Army is paying for these apartments, somehow, not sure how, but I know they don't take our housing allowance, which is super important because we still have to pay the mortgage for our home in TN. One day we will return to our home in TN and really be grown ups again.
So the past few days have been busy and crazy. Lots of work and lots of emotions. It was a lot easier moving from Fisher House to Fisher House. The move yesterday kicked my butt. I died into the bed last night! Yes I will post pictures later (once I get it all cleaned up). But just know we are fine, just crazy busy!!!