Every year, thousands of children and their families spend holidays at Children’s Hospital Boston, separated from family and friends, and not able to take part in the activities and traditions they look forward to all year long. Over the next few months, we’re going to share the stories of a few of these families and highlight the things Children’s does to make holidays away from home as enjoyable as possible for our families.
Today we start with Halloween, the holiday many kids miss the most when they’re stuck in the hospital. “Our patients always remember the year they had to miss trick or treating because they were here,” says Beth Donegan-Driscoll, director of Child Life Services. “So we try to bring as much Halloween spirit to the hospital as we can.”
As you’ll see in the video above, shot at different events throughout the hospital, the Halloween spirit was alive and well this week.
Have you had to spend a holiday at a hospital? Tell us your story in the comments section below.
Joshua Feblowitz is a a research assistant at Brigham & Women’s Hospital and Thrive contributor who has lived with severe food allergies his whole life. In the following post he offers advice for parents on how to make Halloween safer and more inclusive for kids with food allergies.
Halloween is a night filled with excitement, creative costumes, spooky decorations and, of course, lots and lots of candy. But for food allergic children, Halloween can be one of the most difficult and dangerous holidays of the year. Not only are there scary allergens lurking in every candy-filled trick-or-treat bag, it’s also a time your child is at risk of feeling left out of all the food-centric festivities. …
Part of the problem, quite simply, is that I’ve been at it too long. Because of the number and spacing of my children, this will be my 20th Halloween with at least one child dressing up and trick-or-treating. Anything can lose its luster after 20 years, and small resentments and annoyances have a way of growing big (for example, while I appreciate the tireless and cheerful efforts of Santa Claus, now and then I wouldn’t mind getting a little credit myself). …