An ode to City Hospital…

Boston City Hospital has done incredible work over the years. We all know it as the BMC or Boston Medical Center these days. Fact is I would not be sitting here right now if it wasn’t for this hospital. Back when my dad was an infant…he was born with a stomach disorder. Surgery needed to be performed if he was going to live. Problem was the surgery, very experimental and only done at City Hospital. My grandparents packed up the kids at the apartment on Intervale and Magnolia and got ready for the vigil. After the surgery the doctors notified my grandparents 2 separate times that my father might not make it through the night. According to my aunt, my grandfather spent the last night in the Holy Cross Cathedral lighting candles and asking for any help he could get.  My pops survived…

We hit the mid 90’s and my mom goes for her routine exam at City Hospital. She was experiencing some dull pains in her abdomen and let the doctors know before the exam. Mom had ovarian cancer and needed immediate surgery to remove what was described to me as a football sized tumor. Mom was typical, probably the toughest out of all of us, she didn’t show one bit of emotion and came through the surgery just fine….she still had a great sense of humor and would laugh at the drop of a hat. This is a Grove Hall girl…from a family of 13….she wasn’t going to let this ruin her. But the battle was not over…6 to 8 months of chemotherapy to go. Again…she starts her treatments and I’m just looking for cracks in her armor…..nothing. Till one night I show up at the hospital with a pizza (this was all she would eat during treatments)…..I walk in the room and she stares at me with horror in her eyes. “Ma whats wrong?” ….she was holding bunches of her hair in one hand…clenching a mirror with the other.  Finally…she cried….for a good half hour…which of course made me lose it. While we sat there in probably one of our weakest moments….this Nurses Assistant walks in. I remember she had this sweet face and a Jamaican accent. She sat down next to my mother….put her arm around her and said “Margie…we are not going to let anything bad happen to you…your hair will come back thicker….this is just a bump in the road.” After that night….my mother rallied….

Mom is cancer free to this day. I wish the doctors could see how their work blossomed. Both my parents are surrounded by 5 grandkids on a regular basis.

With this being breast cancer awareness month I thought I would share my story. Regardless of what form of cancer we deal with..the emotions and hardships are all the same. I also wanted to make everyone think of the small miracles performed at the BMC and all our other great hospitals. We truly are blessed to live in Boston.

If you would like to donate to Boston Medical Center…. CLICK HERE

A quick shout to my good friend Pheebs. At the time she was doing her City Year tenure in that area. Thank you for being there for my Mom when I couldn’t be…..

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