A group from a local window-washing company planned a surprise for the children in superhero costumes to clean the windows. To Auden’s delight, as he was leaving the inpatient rehabilitation gym on the fifth floor of the hospital, he saw superheroes dangling just outside the window. Spider man, Superman, Captain America and The Flash were all outside – waving hello with their own capes blowing in the wind.
My team and I were excited for this opportunity,” says Wayne Barrows, owner of Appearances Window Cleaners of Tidewater. Wayne didn’t have to beg his team to impersonate the caped crusaders – they enthusiastically volunteered. “For us it is a real honor to be able to use our work to bring joy to kids in the hospital,” says Wayne. “We get to watch their faces light up when they see us.”
As the only freestanding children’s hospital in the state, CHKD provides a special healthcare environment that focuses on the unique needs of children. From window-washing superheroes and sing-alongs with Elmo, to strawberry-flavored anesthesia and cuddles with CHKD Buddy Brigade dogs, CHKD works hard to preserve every moment of childhood for kids who have to spend time in the hospital. Aiden, who has cerebral palsy, has traveled frequently from his home in Poquoson to receive care at CHKD. His stays in the hospital, however, are a bit easier because of unexpected kid-friendly moments like this.
“Visits like this have a great positive effect on our patients,” says Shannon Hood, child life manager at CHKD. “They can relieve some of the sadness or anxiety that children may experience during the hospitalization. We are so grateful for the many local businesses and community partners that give their time and talents to help our kids feel better.”
Despite a long day of physical therapy, Aiden couldn’t wipe the smile off his face after meeting his favorite superhero. Meanwhile, his friends, family and care team know the truth – Aiden and the other children battling health issues at CHKD are the real superheroes.