On Sunday, I stopped at Hanson House on my way home from Palm Springs to thank them for allowing us to stay there during Josh’s hospitalization last year. 
If you don’t know, Hanson House is a beautiful hotel-like home for families of critically-injured patients of the trauma center. I stayed there with J’s parents and my mom while he was in the trauma center, and it was such a relief. To deal with one more detail would have done us in, I think, and it was so wonderful to be living just a 2-minute walk from the hospital. I could stay with J until he needed rest and then I could go back to the house and eat, shower, read, etc. They have a huge communal kitchen, and J’s sister came and made dinner in it one night. It was as close to a feeling of normalcy as you might have. There are no TVs in the rooms, otherwise they are standard hotel-like rooms, but much, much more beautiful. They take donations of unused hotel toiletries to stock the bathrooms, and it was funny to see shampoo from the Aquarius in Laughlin, NV. You must be referred to stay in the house by a doctor. In our case, the trauma team knew we’d be there a while and referred us. I would compare it to Ronald McDonald house, but for a shorter stay. There is a cost, much less than a hotel room; I believe it was $60 per night. I can’t stress enough how wonderful it was to have a private place to reflect at the end of a long day at the hospital. 
It’s so beautiful; I recommend you check out their photos.

 It was a comfortable 106 (better than 120!)

As soon as I pulled up, the memories came rushing back. Especially since the cicadas were going crazy, just like last year. I had never heard them so loud in my life. It was deafening outside; so loud you couldn’t talk on a phone under a tree for the noise. In case you don’t want to click on my link above, a cicada is a winged insect that makes a loud, continuous hum by flexing their “ribcage” (they don’t have a ribcage of course, but it’s a ribcage-like membrane) in and out rapidly. Gross, I know. Even “grosser” that they have a weird larval cycle in which they spend most of their lives underground, come up to molt on a tree (leaving their horrid exoskeletons behind) and then sing their annoying song. If you read the article (I had a lot of time last summer, and have a good memory) you’ll also note that they make a noise loud enough to cause permanent hearing damage in humans. They are LOUD.

 This is the Acute Care Building where J was admitted after the trauma center. His window is hiding behind the tree, but you could just  barely see Hanson House from it.

 Hanson House entryway…

 Just in case you’re sitting here, reading this and wondering where to donate money this year, may I recommend this wonderful, calming, beautiful place?

As I stood in the street, looking at the Acute Care Center, a helicopter took off from the roof of the trauma center. Perhaps to find another lost husband and bring him to this wonderful hospital and fix him, so that his family could have him back. Perhaps not, but I got a smile on my face just thinking about it. I wanted to take a picture, but I couldn’t. I couldn’t believe it had chosen that small window of time to take off, and swirl overhead. I knew it would go somewhere it was needed, and I stared at the sky like a child watching snow fall for the first time. Wonder and admiration on my face.

I’m glad I stopped.

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