Many of you know that a few months ago we bought tickets for Sophie for “A Day Out With Thomas” at the B&O Railroad- an opportunity to not only ride on a real train, but a train pulled by Thomas himself!!! We were so sad when complications from chemo kept her in the hospital so long that we missed the event.
Sophie’s earliest memories are from the beach trip our family took in September. She was diagnosed with cancer in late November. So the majority of her life memories involved the hospital, pain, fatigue, frustration, separation from half of her family, and limited bodily function and autonomy. We so badly wanted to tip the balance a little toward the good and positive side for her. We wanted her to have pictures of a happy time to help her get through the hardship we knew she had ahead of her still.
It was a total blessing in disguise that we missed the opportunity to ride on what we later learned was a ‘stinky and old baltimore amtrak train’ pulled by Thomas. A month or so later we got a tip that Thomas was coming to Lancaster County, PA and it was only a 2.5 hour drive from Children’s Hospital! We got tickets and kept our fingers crossed that this time would work out. And it did! The train was made up of historic late 1800s coaches that were beautifully restored.
All of the conductors and railroad employees played the part as well- dressed in period costume. It was so much fun! An event Laith and I were thinking would be just for the kids turned out to be something we enjoyed immensely as well.
Sophie was still incredibly tired and weak and in need of comfort from Mommy so I had to hold her (and support her- she’s basically like a limp but movable sack of potatoes) the entire time. I was so bummed I couldn’t use my DSLR camera for the first time in ages because it was too heavy and bulky with her in-arms. I had to rely on Laith for most of the photos. Thank goodness he’s a good photographer!
I’m so glad we made this trip and so glad she has some happy family memories now!