Liz, a member of the CMN Hospitals accounting department, stopped for a hospital tour while vacationing in Nashville, Tenn. Here she shares her experience at our Network’s Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt University.
Accounting—the land of numbers, budgets and figures. Working in this department of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals is amazing, but from time to time, it is easy to caught up in Excel spreadsheets and lose focus of why we do what we do—it’s for the kids! These kids inspire us with their unique stories of being strong, courageous and beating impossible odds. They are my heroes!
While staying in Nashville, Tenn., my husband and I got to visit the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. Through my job, I have been able to interact with Karen, the amazing CMN Hospitals program director at Vanderbilt (and who I consider a good friend). She offered to take us on a hospital tour and I jumped at the opportunity.
The first thing I noticed on arrival was the array of balloons with some of our corporate partners listed: Rite Aid, RE/MAX, Foresters and several local credit unions. All of these partners do amazing things for our local hospitals!
While walking through the halls of the hospital, I also couldn’t help but notice the welcoming environment. From the colors to the artwork (some drawn by patients), to the sibling room (where siblings of patients can play while their parents talk to doctors), to the underwater theme of the first floor, it was easy to see this was created with the children and their families in mind. The smiling faces of the employees helped too. :)
In true Nashville fashion, a stage is set on the first floor where Radiothons and performances are held. Encompassing the stage are butterflies that represent donor names with the room that their funds helped support.
Karen told us a story about a man named Quentin, a 21-year-old heart patient who has been in and out of the hospital his entire life. Quentin had proposed to his girlfriend and a week before their wedding day, Quentin’s body was rejecting the heart transplant he had received 6 years prior. But this did not stop them. Quentin’s family and friends, along with the caring staff at Vanderbilt, held the wedding in the hospital chapel! Although a wheelchair was available for Quentin during the ceremony, he was able to stand the whole time.
After an informative and insightful tour, our time at Vanderbilt came to a close. I am forever touched by the stories I heard, the people I met and the great work that is being done at this hospital. Thank you to all the staff and patients, and thank you to Karen for taking time out of your busy day to share why you do what you do—it’s for the kids!