Monday, February 16, 2015

Letting it go

My heart is heavy this morning.  I am not entirely sure why.  I love Reagan's Garden, love reaching out to families and trying to find some way to give them a glimpse of hope and peace through their loss.  Last night, I sat and made another round of cards to be delivered with the flowers.  I feel such heartache at knowing these cards will go to women who are in labor at that very moment with a child who will never survive.  It breaks my heart.  And my words, my thoughts written in each card, seem so insignificant.  Seem so wrong.  It's not enough.  There are literally no words, nothing to help in that moment.  Each card has a verse that carried me through written at the bottom...the Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit -Psalm 34:18.  How wonderful it is that this is true, that God is close to us when we need Him most.  That he saves us when we are crushed in spirit.  THIS is the only thing that provides comfort, peace in our creator.  I feel utterly insignificant and incompetent at relaying this truth.

And, though I know this truth, though I wholeheartedly believe Christ is the only reason I have any peace and hope, that because of His sacrifice I know my story with Reagan is not yet over, I still feel overwhelming bitterness.  I am still angry with God for my pregnancy history.  For infertility, for miscarriage, for stillbirth, for the stress of thinking we would lose Warren and Dean throughout the entire pregnancy, for prolonged bed rest, for a world of micro preemies, for knowing so well what the inside of a NICU looks like.  And on and on it goes.  For some reason, I feel I deserve better.  Haven't I struggled enough? When will it get easier?  Does it ever?  I don't have answers to that, I don't understand why our journey was so difficult and filled with such pain.  I don't understand why those who don't "deserve" it have easy lives, easy pregnancies, easy babies who SLEEP.  And I hold that bitterness in my heart, letting it shape my outlook on life.  It's not healthy.  It doesn't bring Samuel or Reagan back.  It doesn't give me wonderful, warm and fuzzy pregnancy memories with the boys.  It doesn't reduce their delays or cut back on their therapies.  It simply makes me miserable and sad.  It makes me feel uncomfortable around people in their 3rd trimester, or people with healthy babies, or people with little girls.  I truly do not want anyone to have to go through all we did, and yet, I don't want it to be easy for anyone else.  What does that say about me?  What does that say about my sinful heart?  I am broken.  Completely and utterly broken.  And though I know and trust that the Lord is in control and that His plan is GOOD, I second guess Him and think I could have done it better.  So today, my prayers is that I would let it go.  That I would truly rejoice with families who welcome another little one into their families.  Whether through trials of infertility or by accident, that I would find joy when my friends announce pregnancies.  That I would be able to look at little girls without such a gut-wrenching pain in my chest, a literal take-your-breath away feeling as I continue to grieve for Reagan.  I have learned these past 2+ years that I cannot do it on my own.  I must let it go, surrender to Christ, and let Him carry me instead.  I must rest in His peace, knowing His grace is sufficient for me.  So, so difficult for me to do.  And even harder to do on a regular basis.  But for today, for this moment, I am letting it go.  And maybe tomorrow God will give me the strength to do it again.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Friday the 13th

There is nothing quite like seeing your child fall.  In the Savant household, this is a regular occurrence.  These boys tumble, bump their heads, get bruises all the time.  I cannot stand guard over both of them in two separate rooms at the same time.  And I surely cannot contain them.  This is something I had to let go of long ago, my inability to protect my children at all times.  So, I relish in the tender moments when I get to kiss boo boos and make them all better.  And I laugh when Dean learned to "fake fall" simply so he could have a quiet moment with just Mommy and I could kiss his imaginary (and somewhat self induced) boo boo.

But then, on Friday, Dean ripped down the baby gate at the bottom of the stairs.  I couldn't figure out how to get it back up there right and Andrew was out of town, so I just took it off.  It was one afternoon.  As we're getting ready to head up for bed, Warren starts up the stairs.  One step.  I bend down to grab Dean and look up in time to see Warren falling.  He fell 1 step, not the biggest fall we've had by a long shot.  And he screamed.  I ran over and picked him up just in time to see his eyes roll back and his little body go limp.  Terror.  Complete and utter terror.  And in about 10 seconds, he was back to screaming and was fine.  I was not fine.  I frantically called the pediatrician who confirmed that little Warren needed to go straight to the ER.

Now, the ER is a whole different kind of terror for moms of micro preemies.  I knew Warren needed to be checked out, but I also knew he was in isolation.  He's not supposed to come with me to the grocery store, much less the one place sick people go.  I shuddered.  And Dean!  Poor Dean was going to have to come along too since Andrew was away.  I would be exposing both my children to all the things we've kept them isolated from over the past 19 months.  I cannot even begin to express how thankful I am that Uncle Wade and Aunt Aly were able to save the day, to come up to the hospital and get Dean and take him home so he could sleep and not face exposure.

The Children's ER at the Levine left much to be desired.  It was crowded, I'm sure filled with RSV.  I waited to check in and explained about Warren's head injury and the urgency with which the nurse insisted I come straight to the ER.  I was told to wait.  I then explained about Warren's immunity and was told I could wait in a small room off the main waiting area.  Thankful, I headed there.  The security guard sitting outside kept coughing, sniffing, and making nasty sick sounds.  I shut the door as much as I could.  Warren screamed.  For about an hour, Warren screamed.  Then they took us to triage, took his vitals, and told us to return to the waiting room.  Sigh.  Another hour went by before we were taken back to a room.  It was during this hour that Andrew's flight landed and he was able to join me shortly before we were taken back.  We were just getting settled in our room when we were told we had to leave, a trauma was coming in and they needed our room.  Seriously??  Infant head injury and you're kicking us out.  What about all these people here because of a cold?  Kick THEM out.  We waited in the hallway for a bit, watching the craziness unfold.  We were given a bed right there in the hall between 2 rooms.  Seriously?  Did I mention, immune compromised?  Did I mention chronic lung disease?  Andrew took Warren back to the little waiting room and I stayed there in the hall waiting for a room to open.  Eventually it did.  Then, the waiting continued.  Warren fell at 7PM.  It was 11 before we saw a doctor and anyone even looked at him.  Thankfully, he was fine.  Because, if he wasn't fine, I shudder to think of how much damage could have been done during this waiting game.  I have limited experience with the ER in general, but I'm not so sure I'll be taking my kiddos back there again.

Warren checked out just fine and we headed home.  Poor little guy was so exhausted after staying up till midnight that he just crashed.  Didn't wake up when we got him home, didn't wake up when I changed him into clean jammies that hadn't been exposed to an onslaught of disease, didn't wake up when I changed my mind and decided he needed to sleep in our room.  He didn't wake up until I woke him the following morning to eat his Valentines pink heart-shaped pancakes that I somehow thought would make up for the trauma of the night before.  But, he is doing great, completely unphased by the whole ordeal.  The baby gate is secured once again, and eventually I'll feel comfortable with him going up and down stairs again.  We survived our first trip to the ER.  Something tells me it will not be our last...