When you look up the word, “procrastination” in the dictionary, my name is probably within the definition. It’s a very bad habit of mine. But, sometimes I can get the most successful and productive work done at the last second. However, Allison, Ashley and I have something that we would really like to do on Christmas Eve and we are hoping that we still have time to accomplish it…….While Kayla was in treatment at the hospital, she discovered that she found comfort in a Sock Monkey. What’s a Sock Monkey? http://www.sockmonkey.com/ She never said exactly why a Sock Monkey was able to provide her with some peace and contentment. But, if it made her happy, then I was happy, too. When I was a child, I had a stuffed monkey that was always with me. He was covered in fuzzy stuffed animal fur and wore a big red bow tie. But, his hands were made of plastic. In one of his hands he was holding a plastic banana. You can still see my teeth marks on the banana from where I would constantly bite it. Maybe I passed this fascination with monkeys down to Kayla because I know my monkey always comforted me…….Kayla, eventually, was given 3 Sock Monkey’s in the colors of pink, blue and the traditional brown. Sometimes, they sat in the hospital bed with her. But, most of the time they sat on the window ledge of her room overlooking Kayla in her hospital bed. Those three little monkey’s were always right there at her side. Now, the pink and the blue Sock Monkey’s are sitting on top of some of Kayla’s books which is located on the dresser in her bedroom. They’ve been there since she passed away and probably always will be. The brown Sock Monkey is in a very special place. I believe that when a woman becomes a mother, they instantly go into a mama bear and protective mode. This never changes even when a child dies before their parent. I believe that Kayla is in Heaven and that her physical body is no longer suffering. But, when she passed away, there was still the protective part of me that didn’t want her to be alone. The brown Sock Monkey was placed next to Kayla where she was laid to rest. Maybe that was silly and made no sense. But, I think any mother could understand this. Think about it….How many times have you walked into your child’s room while they were sleeping and made sure that their favorite stuffed animal was right next to them just in case they were to wake up and need some comfort? I guess it’s the same reason I placed Kayla’s Sock Monkey with her……In previous blogs, I have expressed how Allison, Ashley and I want to start a foundation in Kayla’s name to provide gifts and care packages for the kids diagnosed with cancer and enduring long-term treatment at the Aflac Cancer Center – Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta-Egleston. This was the same hospital where Kayla received treatment for leukemia. Right now, our goal is to provide each child in the Aflac Cancer Center with a brand new Sock Monkey of their own. And, we are asking for friends and family to consider donating a Sock Monkey to these kids. Due to HIPPA laws, the hospital is not allowed to tell me exactly how many patients are there right now. However, if I had to guess, there were probably 50 or more just in the Aflac Cancer Center. Each one of these kids deserves, at least, a moment to smile. And, we are hoping to accomplish this joy by providing them with a brand new adorable Sock Monkey. Kayla’s 19th birthday is on Christmas Eve. Last year, we had a balloon release for her at the cemetery which was very emotional and a hard day to accept and get through. This year, we want to do something giving and charitable on her birthday. We want to encourage everyone reading this blog to consider purchasing a Sock Monkey in Kayla’s memory for these precious kids.
Sock Monkey’s range in price from $7.00 to $35.00. It just depends on where you purchase it. They are available in very small sizes for babies to large over-sized ones for anyone of any age. Also, there are Sock Monkey blankets, PJ’s, slippers, hats, t-shirts, sweat pants and more available at various stores. These kids pretty much live in comfortable clothing and would probably love any of these items.
There are a few ways to accomplish this goal:
1. Sock Monkey’s can be purchased at Walmart, Kmart and Target. I am sure there are other stores around town that sell them, as well.
2. Purchase a Sock Monkey online: http://www.walmart.com/ip/Schylling-Toys-Sock-Monkey/16521266?findingMethod=rr
If you are out Christmas shopping and purchase a Sock Monkey while visiting one of these stores, we would be happy to stop by and pick it up. Or, feel free to mail it to us.
Sock Monkey’s can, also, be ordered and shipped directly to the Aflac Cancer Center to:
Aflac Cancer Center Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta-Egleston Jessica Houston 1687 Tullie Circle NE Atlanta, GA 30322
If choosing the option to ship directly to Jessica Houston at the hospital, please include a note saying that it is specifically designated for a child at the Aflac Cancer Center. And, please note that it is in memory of Kayla Jones.
Again, our goal is to walk into the hospital on Christmas Eve with a new Sock Monkey for each child enduring treatment for cancer. We don’t want to stop there. We would love to do this for these kids at least once a month. Thank you and please contact me with any questions.