Ladybug House Newsletter

December 2017


People ask me, "Isn't it built yet?" 

"How long will you keep at this?" 

(Spoiler: As long as it takes to build Seattle's first palliative care home for kids.)

That's when I have to remember my why.

I'm a nurse. I worked a night shift for 30 years on cancer units, where I met many kids and families. Kids like Kimmy, whose foster mom couldn't handle being with her when she died, so my coworkers and I sat with her around the clock, listening to Lionel Richie.

I met people who came to Seattle from around the world. Like the single mom from Germany who came here to try to save her five-year-old son and left...alone.

I saw the isolation families endured so far away from home.

They planted the seed for Ladybug House long before it had a name. 

They are my why. My reminder that we can do better.

We are making great strides in medicine, but not enough has changed in end-of-life care for children.

In the U.S. we have two pediatric palliative care homes. For perspective, the United Kingdom has 54.

Families with sick and dying children are emotionally, psychologically and spiritually taxed. Siblings experience increased stress; and the divorce rate among parents with hospitalized children is growing.

When I picture Ladybug House, I see a home filled with love and laughter. I see death met with dignity and peace. And I see families gathered together, cradled by the community.

Families I met sacrificed everything while loving their children through the unimaginable. That's why  quitting is not an option.

We accomplished so much in 2017 and we have big goals for the year ahead.

We want to find land.

We want to find an architect.

We want to hire administrative and development staff who can help Ladybug House reach the next level.

We will strive for all this so that one day soon, we can see Ladybug House adding "life to their days."

And I know we can do this. Because we have your support. 

Help us start 2018 stronger and louder than ever.

With gratitude,
Suzanne Gwynn
Founder, Ladybug House

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