Smiling for Christmas – Part 1

After all it is Christmas, so you might believe what I am about to tell you.

Betty C. is a resident at Winter Park Care and Rehab; she is proudly Catholic and Irish and when she dreams, all her dreams take place on the Notre Dame Football field.

Several weeks ago Betty said that more than anything she wanted to go and see Notre Dame play Florida State in the Champs Sport Bowl on December 29th.

The staff made plans, contacted the family and arranged for the money to be in order, but it turned out that there was not a single ticket to be had – the game had been sold out for some time.

Betty heard that crushing news and ever since then she tells everyone that she is depressed. She has been rolling up and down the hall in her wheel chair wearing her Notre Dame hat with her head hung down and her voice at barely a whisper. As she lives in Florida, as well as because of her age, she thinks that probably will be the last time that she will ever get a chance to see her beloved “Fightin’ Irish” play in person.

Today, a volunteer Chris Sylvester and my boss Eric Mock asked me to try another angle to secure two tickets.  I thought to myself, “I don’t even know where to start and besides this I was just about to go out to lunch and I am tired and I need some time off and my foot is itching and etc…” Reluctantly, I grabbed the horn.

The Florida Sports Authority the governing body for the bowl game said that they have been sold out for two weeks.  I even got on the phone to Notre Dame.  They were sorry, but they didn’t have even a single ticket available.

Later, I passed Betty in the hall and said with a sigh, “Well, it is Christmas.  Who knows maybe a miracle will happen.”

The tickets that she had originally wanted to buy were $150.00 a pop, but somehow I got steered onto a site (I still don’t remember how I got on it) and the summation is that we have ordered Betty C. two tickets for a total price of $120.00! Betty and I are off to the game next week and she will be seated in the Norte Dame Section right next to me a Florida State graduate!

I rolled her into an office with the Administrator, the Volunteer, the Activity Director and another Stakeholder.  She opened the card presented to her by Chris, and she read it and shouted and made the sign of the cross about 7 times! She started laughing and then she and I broke into the Notre Dame Fight song!  I whispered into her ear to be sure and secure a doctor’s order so that she and I can quaff a few frosty, adult beverages.  Betty says that she will spring for the hot dogs.

Betty C. hasn’t stopped smiling as of this writing.

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