Teddy Bear Tea

Last year, in December of 2010, I left the house for four consecutive hours.  I felt like shouting from the rooftop as it was the first time I had been out of the house for any significant amount of time in 16 months.  I was on the Gerson Therapy and had to be home to drink vegetable juice and do coffee enemas all day long.  Preparing certain juices in advance or missing a “coffee break” wasn’t an option.  After 16 months of perfect compliance and stable blood work, I decided to grab a few juices and hit the road – the destination was Teddy Bear Tea in the city.  My husband and my father attended as well.  I really didn’t have the energy to manage the girls on my own. 
I don’t know if it was because of my sheltered life or because of the beautiful décor but, for me, the tea room was magical.  I felt like I walked into dreamland for little girls (and for us mommies who like a little glitter).  There were two story windows with a view overlooking the Public Garden, ornate chandeliers, Christmas décor with extra sparkle, and giant, stuffed teddy bears all around the room.  I didn’t think it could be any more perfect until I saw the pianist playing in the corner.  All the little girls were wearing fancy Christmas gowns.  I felt so lucky to be experiencing this festive event with my daughters.  I didn’t feel great physically but, unlike the prior year, I was vertical, and the pain in my bones was beginning to subside.
The highlight of the event was a visit from Mrs. Claus and Hermes, Santa’s elf.  When they entered the room, about 30 feet from where we sat, I heard them announce “We’re looking for Madelyn and Sierra (my daughters).  Does anyone know where they are?”  I didn’t know what was going on.  Why were Mrs. Claus and Hermes singling out my daughters?  Once they found us, Mrs. Claus and Hermes spent a long time speaking with my girls.  They told the girls all about Santa, why he has a big, white beard (to keep him warm) and how he’s able to visit so many childrens’ homes in one night (he has magical powers and is able to make time stop, of course).  I then saw Mrs. Claus and Hermes hand each of my daughters a beautiful, sparkly heart ornament.  As I listened in on the conversation, I turned away so that my oldest wouldn’t see the tears pouring out of my eyes.  I overheard Mrs. Claus tell my five year old daughter, Madelyn, that “She knew the last year had been a tough one at home.  Santa knows that mommy hasn’t been herself and hasn’t been able to take care of Madelyn like she used to.  Santa wants Madelyn to know that she is a very special little girl and has been a fantastic help around the house for mommy.  Santa has been watching and he knows how good she is.”  It had been such a tough year – first the diagnosis, then the crazy juice and enema schedule, and finally, living in the basement for several months to avoid exposure to the viruses my girls brought home from nursery school – but, somehow, Mrs. Claus had just made it all okay. 
It was then that I remembered the conversation that took place when I made the reservation for tea.  I told the receptionist that I was using a nutritional cancer therapy and wouldn’t be eating.  I told her because it was a pricey event and I didn’t want to be charged for a meal that I wouldn’t eat.  Well, it just goes to show that, when you give people the opportunity to be nice, some will jump at the chance.  Some will do more than you ever could have hoped.
My girls have not stopped talking about Teddy Bear Tea for the last twelve months.  This last weekend, we attended Teddy Bear Tea 2011.  I didn’t tell the receptionist I was sick this time, I simply told her that I was on a restricted diet and couldn’t eat the food provided. 
Mrs. Claus recognized me from the previous year.  She gave me a huge, lingering hug and told me that she thinks about me often and that I am amazing.  I was way too choked up to tell her that she is the one who is amazing.  Her kind words and special gift brought so much happiness to my daughters after a very difficult year.  I’m in the process of writing her a letter.  I think she needs to know what a difference she made.
This year, the event was a very different for us.  This year, I was strong enough to attend the event and manage the girls on my own.  This year, I didn’t have to travel with juices.  I just popped a few enzymes and relished every moment. I had a skip in my step and a smile on my face.  My time has come and I am healing.