My Little Waiting Room® was born out of a friendship between two moms. When Amy Paterson was 34-years-old, she was diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer. Her son was two-and-a-half years old. Amy had support from her wonderful husband, nearby family and generous friends. Still, it was difficult to arrange child care every time she had a medical appointment. In fact, she had 144 medical appointments in that year alone. That meant the family had to arrange child care 144 before Amy could get to the appointments that would help her to get well.
Before Amy’s chemotherapy appointments, her friend Melissa Moore would drop off a card with a small gift and say “Happy Chemo Day!” In the afternoons after Amy’s chemo, the two friends would take long walks. They often talked about the challenges of arranging child care on those walks. They soon realized there was a simple answer that could have helped Amy and could surely help hundred of families in the future.
Together, they began researching the idea for drop-in child care at the hospital, creating the concept, and forming the non-profit My Little Waiting Room™.
Along the way, they invited their good friend, parenting coach and trusted advisor, Stephanie Smith, to join the founding board of directors and help lead their mission to bring drop-in child care to hospitals.
When Amy passed away in November 2018, her sister Pam Grater joined the MLWR board to honor her legacy, and Tricia Sullivan the former project manager of MLWR at Providence also joined the board.