We were expecting our first child in July of 2012. Unfortunately, our Lucy came early. Lucy Anne Donald was born early in the morning on March 28, 2012. She was 4 months premature, and weighed only a pound. She fought to live, and defied the odds by surviving one day, then another, then another. We fell more in love with her every day. Then, on May 21st, everything changed. Lucy took a sudden turn for the worse, and we were forced to make a decision that no parent should ever have to make. That morning, we said goodbye to Lucy as we held her and kissed her one last time.
During this hopeful, and ultimately heartbreaking, time, we stayed at the Bakersfield Ronald McDonald House. The staff and other families shared all of our ups and downs and came to love Lucy too. They took care of us, supporting us so that we could take care of Lucy. They laughed and cried with us, and grieved with us when Lucy died. The Ronald McDonald House really was our home during that time, and it's felt like home ever since. The staff and one family from that time are lifelong friends.
Since our stay, we've had three beautiful boys. Our friends from the Bakersfield Ronald McDonald House have been there for their births and birthday parties, and are still always there when we need them. Their love and dedication, and the memory of our beautiful Lucy Anne, are why we walk.