Wednesday, May 7, 2014

New Meaning for the Marine Corps Marathon

The following was written by Tiffany, a Marine Corps spouse who shares her account of how Hope For The Warriors® supported her young family from day one.

My husband Jeff has been part of Team Hope For The Warriors® as a handcyclist for a year now. Through Team Hope For The Warriors®, he has made some amazing friends and has been able to attend some races he's been wanting to do for quite some time. When the Marine Corps Marathon date was released for 2013, he really wanted to go, not only because he's a Marine but also because it was on his birthday. Hope For The Warriors® contacted him about attending and he jumped at the chance. I was 29 weeks pregnant when we flew to Washington DC for the marathon and little did I know that Hope For The Warriors® would be our angel in disguise. 

We went to the Team dinner Saturday night and I started having some pains. Jeff thought it may be from all the walking around so we left the dinner early to relax at the hotel. About 10:30 p.m., I was in a lot of pain and it wasn't going away. When Jeff called the Team director and asked where the closest hospital was, she decided to come to the hotel and take us herself. As it turns out I was in active labor, which couldn't be stopped. 

Our beautiful baby girl was delivered via emergency c-section on October 27, 2013 at 1:23 a.m. She was 2 lbs 8 oz, 12 inches long. We named her Emmalyn Arlene Chaffin. She shares her birthday with my husband. Jeff went on to complete the marathon on zero sleep and even made a PR. Hope For The Warriors® president came and visited me in the hospital, which was amazing. She said they would help us in any way they could. Hope For The Warriors® really helped us when we needed it the most. 

After I got discharged from the hospital, they got me a rental car so I could get to and from the hospital. They provided us with a social worker on their staff, who was always there to answer any questions, help me with the meetings with the doctors, and to just be there for emotional support. Six weeks later Texas Children’s Hospital picked us up, allowing Emmalyn and I to be reunited with my husband and two boys. Emmalyn was discharged from the NICU on Christmas Eve and it was the best Christmas gift. I'm so thankful to the entire Hope For The Warriors® Team for everything they did for us during that time, I can honestly say I don't know what we would have done without them.

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