Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Seven Years. Today.

Seven years ago, it was warm.
I was in a white T-shirt and khaki shorts and they were the only thing that I could wear at that point. You and your brother were getting so big! I had to sleep sitting in a chair because you were so heavy on my lungs.

Seven years ago, I wondered if today would be the day. My calendar had a big circle around the 22nd. I was sure that was the day you would be born. 40 weeks.

Seven years ago, I got a call. She said it was time. I nearly ran through the hospital. I couldn't wait to meet you!

Seven years ago, I changed. You were gone. He was here. But I didn't know where I went... I sometimes wonder what happened to me... Where did I go?


Today it was warm. The sun was out. I bought your balloons and I drove to your garden. And then it happened... I just started saying it. Saying it out loud.

"Andrew! Don't forget your backpack!"
"Andrew, what kind of ice cream do you want?"
"Andrew! Go to your room!"
"Andrew honey, what book do you want to read?"
"Andrew... Oh God my sweet Andrew... Do you know how long my heart has somehow continued to beat? Continued to keep me going? Continued..."

How did that happen? How is it I am still here, and you are not?

Seven years.

I said your name over and over because for seven years I've dreamt of saying those things. Saying those words and so many, many more. I've dreamt of calling your name... and of you calling mine.

Mom.

Andrew.

My tears fell today and like those nights that I spent alone calling your name, I wondered if they would ever stop. Seven years. Seven.

But I sang to you.
Blew out your candles.
Wrote to you.
And sent seven balloons with seven kisses to a seven year old who I miss more than anything...

Did you see my message on that balloon? I wonder what the answer is... How can I hold you so close each and every day- and yet miss you so?

Perhaps the answer is love.
Love.
For there is no other word that comes to me tonight.
This night.
Seven years after I first held you, touched you, kissed you.

I love you my son.
Now more than ever.
But tomorrow I will miss you more.

Happy Birthday. Thank Him for the sun. Thank Him for the birds and the butterflies. Thank Him for you.
My baby.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Two Years. Today.

Two years ago today.
I was driving to school.
I had been bleeding, but I had seen that heartbeat. I had seen it three times.
As I drove I could think of nothing more than getting through the day. Coming home. Resting with my feet up.

It was in the afternoon that things began to change. I felt some cramping and an urgency to call my doctor. I took my students to my friend's classroom and got on the phone. It was the third time I had called, needed to know it was ok. I needed to be home and yet I put on my smile and pretended all was well. As the students wrote in their notebooks I picked up mine. I begged and pleaded in my own notebook- a note to God. Please, please don't take this baby...

As the bell rang, I walked to my car as fast as I could without putting strain on my body. I needed to be home. Five minutes into my drive, I knew I wouldn't make it. I drove to my childhood home, my parents' home, and climbed up the stairs to my old bedroom. I curled up in a fetal position and prayed. I rocked and prayed.

But there was so much blood.

I had never experienced such physical pain. I cried but refused to take anything to dull my pain. I could do this for my baby. My mom was worried. My dad was worried. I cried out loud as they watched. I begged out loud.

But there was so much blood.

I called my doctor and she calmed me. Said to lay and be still. She would pray, but for now all I could do was be. Be still. I could go to the hospital but the added trauma of an examination would not be good for my baby. I cried with her.

And there was so much blood.

The pain. I wanted to leave but I was a prisoner. I could not drag myself further than the bathroom. I climbed back into my bed. And then I called.

I called my friend. A friend who had lost so much. Sons. But she had a daughter. She had bled. There was so much blood and yet her daughter was safe. Lived despite going through such horror. I called her.

I cried and asked her to tell me her story. There was so much blood, but she lived. There was so much blood, but she was safe. There was so much blood but she is here.

I clung to that. Clung to her sweet words. Clung to that hope and prayed.

Four hours later, I felt I could go. My mom drove me. My children were in bed. My husband was so worried. But I felt better. I clung to hope.

But there was so much blood.

Two years ago tomorrow we went to the doctor. Looked at the screen. And hope was gone.

There was just so much blood.

My sweet baby E. I think of you now and I picture you. A child who could walk. A child who can smile. A whole child. A child who knew that I stayed in that room and cried and begged and pleaded for you to stay... and yet you didn't. But had love been enough, you would be here. Asleep in this house. Fast asleep... But for some reason you were sent to my life for just a moment. Such a brief moment... but you left something. Peace. Your brother is not alone. He has a hand to hold. You have a hand to hold. And I feel in my soul you heard my heartbeat, felt my rocking and heard my prayers. You knew my love. You know it still. Today I look back and I wonder... what might have been had you not left me.

Two years ago.
Today.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

September

September: The ninth month of the year.

September: The month the heartbeat stopped. And I held his precious body. Kissed him goodbye.

September: The month the heartbeat stopped. And I could only wonder... What would have been... Who would have been...

September.

As a teacher, this is the month there is a flurry of activity. Setting up a new classroom. Wondering what will come of the future year. Meeting the little faces that will change me.

And then it hits me.

It's another September.

Seven years ago today his heart still beat inside me. I remember wondering if it were possible for my body to stretch any more. It was hard to breathe. But I assumed the longer they were in, the better. Seven years ago today, I was different. I was excited. I was whole. And he was still here.

Three years ago today there was another's heart beating inside me. And I wondered who this last child would be? I had a feeling it was a girl. I felt great and looked forward to a March birth. Never one to hide good news, I was telling others, asking for their prayers- For though losing a child could never happen twice, I was beginning to bleed. But I was hopeful. I was broken, but healing. And that heartbeat was still here.

But it was September.

I would say that September is a horrible month. One I'd like to forget. Skip all together.

But then-

September was the month I first became a mother. The month my precious Jonasen entered my life. The month my transition to strength and grace and forgiveness began.

September.

For now I will welcome you. For I've tried to escape you and yet you still come, again and again... For seven years I've prayed you'd forget, yet you always come. And I always find myself here. Torn. Wondering how I should feel about you. Wondering still.

September.