Parents, hospitalized kids still give thanks

Thursday's holiday means different things to different people.

"I couldn't even express that in words how happy I am," said Aileen Gonzalez.

For her, seeing her 9-year-old daughter Ciana smiling after having a traumatic brain injury from a car accident is priceless.

"She just kept getting better. Now she's walking, she's getting her voice back, she's moving her right arm," Gonzalez said.

Today Ciana got to have an early Turkey Day lunch with other kid patients at Tampa General Hospital. Her mom has a message for folks at home.

"Thank God every single day that you have your family at home don't take them for granted tell them you love them every day," said Gonzalez.

Ciana should be going home in a couple of weeks, but wants everyone to know.

"Thank you for your prayers and have a happy Thanksgiving," Ciana said.

Some kids are too sick to leave their rooms.

And then, there's patients like 4-year-old J.T. who suffers from a form of pneumonia and is so sick that people from the outside can't visit without putting on a gown complete with gloves and a face mask to protect J.T. and others.

"Hmm. I'm feeling better," said J.T.

After a big scare for mom, J.T. should be heading home in a week or so.  He's not sure about Thanksgiving.

"I don't know, but I like presents from Christmas," J.T. said.

Pretty sure that means he's doing better, but he is thankful for his doctors.

"Yes, doctors make sick people get better," said J.T.

His mother reminds people pneumonia can be severe.

"Very scary. I think a lot of people don't realize how serious this illness is," said Michelle Madden J.T.'s mom.

Michelle Madden works at TGH and knows just how fortunate J.T. is.

"Just being thankful at the fact that it wasn't any more serious than what it really could have been and being thankful that he's back to him old self again."

The kids got to have turkey or ham with all the fixings including pumpkin pie.


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