On Saturday evenings I bake bread to take into work on Sunday morning. I have been doing this for almost 2 years now, never missing a work Sunday.
Last Sunday I was taking care of 15 month old Ariella who has been a regular patient on the pediatric oncology ward since she was 4 months old. She is afraid of all of us still and clings to her mother's breast during procedures like drawing blood through her central line or changing her dressing. She won't let anyone of us hold her and cries when we approach.
Well, for some reason this kiddo is beginning to warm up to me. It might be that she's become curious as to why when I am taking her vital signs and listening to her chest I begin to kiss her feet. It stops her crying and now the game for her is to put her feet up to my face for me to kiss them. I tell her I don't kiss all my patient's feet but hers are so sweet and good to gobble on. I am now met with smiles and giggles and wiggly toes!
On Sunday her breakfast tray was removed before she got to it so to make amends I offered her and mamma a slice of my bread with butter and jam. They loved it and mom asked if they could have more. Ariella was jabbering away and pointing to the empty plate. After they were satiated I told mamma that had I known all it took was some of my bread to finish up winning Ariella over to me....I would have offered it months ago!
PS: I have been battling a series of migraines since Friday night. I have a few hours where the pain subsides but then returns. I've not been able to paint and going into work has been a bit more than I can handle as well. But I haven't been able to get Ariella out of my thoughts, her sweet little feet. So this evening during a headache "break" i did this very quick sketch from a book I have of Mary Cassatt: Mother Nursing her Baby c. 1908, Art Institute of Chicago.