I’m sitting at my computer, late at night, in an attempt to distract myself to tiredness. It doesn’t work. As the image changes on my desktop, I see a picture of my little Bug. The picture I am looking at unintentionally captured the moment when I knew something was wrong. It was the last day she was home. It was the last time we took her to the hospital.
FLASH and I am there. I feel my heart sink as I realize my girl is in trouble. I feel my heart race as I try to comfort her on the drive to the hospital. I feel the fear take over as my little baby vomits all over herself.
I close my laptop, cradle my head in my hands, wondering if I can weather this storm. Before I have a chance to think, FLASH, another picture, from about 19 days earlier is firmly planted in my mind without warning.
My little Bug is reaching for me, with beaded tears in her eyes, not long after she fell. I can see the pain and fear in her eyes. My little girl. I see her pain and know there is nothing I can do about it. So, in typical fashion, I try to be smart. I try to stay calm to balance my own mother’s panic – She will be fine. It’s a bump on the head. Just take care of your baby girl – I repeat this mantra all the way to the emergency room.
FLASH. My daughter looks so pale and small in her tiny gown. The ER. Cold and clinical, but it has to be. I hear myself say, almost in an echo, What do you mean a growth? For the next moments, the memory lives only in echo and smoke. All I can tell you is how it felt. Terrifying.
FLASH. Right here. Right now. I sit here, a mother of twins who put her daughter to bed hours ago. Nothing I do makes it easier. Right here and right now I can see my daughters being born. I see them in their incubators. I see them coming home. I see them growing. I see them learning. I see them laughing. I see them. I see her. And then she is gone.
This is how my Thursday went. I took no creative license. I just decided that one of the goals of this blog will be to share with you, as best I can, what it feels like to lose a child. I do this entirely for my own reasons. I need to be heard and understood. This pain is heavy. However, I am hoping that something you may read might help you to reconnect or reach out to someone you know who is living with grief. Or perhaps another grieving parent will come along and read this and get that rare feeling, that we are not completely alone.