Tomorrow we sell the wheelchair van.
We bought it 11 years ago when we moved to California for Lu to start at the Bridge School.
It was an adapted van. They drop the bottom somehow and take out the middle seats so your kid can ride in their wheelchair in the center of the van.
When I was driving I could put my right hand on her knees.
Or reach further back and feel her forehead when we were driving to the emergency room at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at 11:50 p.m.
Or at 4:00 a.m. when I wasn't even driving her but was following the ambulance down the 280 to Palo Alto.
I knew it was the beginning of a new phase.
A bad aspiration pneumonia.
The beginning of living in the hospital.
Trying to keep her going.
And she always got better.
She loved the hospital.
She kept us going with her joy.
Flirting with doctors and nurses and respiratory therapists.
She always calmed me down.
This wheelchair van took us to Disneyland and Universal Studios.
It took us into the California desert in August with all of us and my Polish sister-in-law.
Somehow we had imagined that the nights would be cool.
Going to see the Salton Sea and running for our lives when the flies swarmed towards us.
Joshua Tree at 117 degrees.
Always running for the van.
It took Lueza to school for almost 11 years.
From Raffi's "Baby Beluga" to Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Carousel" or Sondheim's "Into The Woods"or "Pacific Overtures". Foo Fighters.
Christmas trees were always brought home on top of this van.
And the thrill of going to our first Bridge School benefit.
Watching the crowds with their tarps and backpacks as we headed to "V.I.P". parking.
Having no idea how much Lueza would love being there.