I have been for quite some time, planning on looking back on Max's birthday and writing out the day and days after. One, I know it will be healing, two I want you all to be able to know what went on that day, and three for my son's day to be remembered in writing. I do have a lot of the day on video and plan to edit something together sometime but I want to wait until I am ready to watch the video in whole, which I haven't had the courage to do so thus far. I will at some point. But for now I want to share with you in words.
December 5, 2008
Dust and I were to the hospital around 5:30 on the 5th. The rest of my family and friends joined us around 6 am. Everything that morning felt surreal. We were blessed to have a nurse that was incredibly real, and with us through the day and into the night. It was the first time she ever took part in a delivery such as ours, the grace and strength she gave to everyone was beyond what anyone expected. I for one didn't understand the importance of her job that day. Now, knowing what was before her that day leaves me with a new respect for what nurses do and are capable of giving.
She arrived along with a few other doctors at least I think they were doctors. They all introduced themselves and gave me an idea of what to expect in the operating room. It was really like a dream leading up to Max's arrival. My doctor prayed with us, I felt secure in her care. Another nurse offered to video and our photographers were there ready to snap pictures. For anyone who has been through a c-section I'm sure you know the crazy ER experience of the operating room. My family and friends prayed and waited together in the waiting room. After they prepared me, with a catheter in all, Dust was able to come in and be by my side. From when my Dr. started the incision to when I had a glimpse of Max over the curtain felt like seconds and it was only minutes. My c-section was scheduled at 7:30 am and Max was lifted over the curtain at 7:33 am.
Love at first sight doesn't do justice to the way my heart soared looking at his face. I went to some place... Jesus I believe carried me from that moment on. The part of the video I have seen was when they were trying to get Max to breath. This felt like seconds to me again, but in reality was much longer. They worked on him for some time and I just was able to have peace and watch his sweet face for what I thought was seconds. I do remember wanting desperately to switch spots with him, to not have to watch him struggle to breath. But God took time away which now thinking back if I would've felt time I don't know if I could have made it through and kept my composure. Composure was so important that day, if I would have lost it the memories would have been tarnished to just pain, there was so much more there that day than just pain.
Then he was in my arms. Dust and I enjoyed Maxson and were able to feel such true joy as this little life graced us with his time.
It was time for us to be moved to a special room that allowed all of my family and friends to meet Maxson. I was moved out of the operating room with Maxson in my arms and alive. At this point if my memory serves me right Max started this cooing sound that while it sounded cute and promising my nurse informed us it was the sound of him becoming tired. The doctor told me Max would become tired and that no amount of time could be given but that it wasn't long. This is another moment I felt a powerful strength given to me. I didn't break down I just enjoyed his presence. I let my family hold him real quick and back on my chest he went. My pastor was there and we dedicated Max to the Lord. And I just felt in awe of his life, watching and feeling him with me can't be put into words to express the amazement and love it carried. My nurse informed us he was becoming tired. At some point I turned Max to face me. He looked into my eyes I felt for a moment he knew I was his mamma and then a absent glaze came over his eyes. His heart came to a stop shortly after this 10:44 am.
Immediately after his heart stopped a time of pure agony came on but was short lived, I again felt some strength come (your prayers were there, and I felt all of them). We gave Max a bath and took some pictures with him. Then we enjoyed him just being in our arms even though it was just physical.
I have some great friends and my friends have some great men in their lives. One of my friend's husband is so real and honest, and I deeply respect him for his honesty, he told me later that when he came to visit he thought it was weird that we were all happily hanging out with a baby who had passed. But when he entered the room and had the chance to hold Max his view changed. He thought it was the most beautiful real experience he has ever had the chance to share. I wanted to share this thought because I understand that it may seem weird to have joy and peace holding a child that has gone to be with Jesus. But it wasn't. I held and shared Max with family and friends until 9 that night.
I was moved to a private room in the OB some time during the day. This is the room I would spend the next few days. Some of my friends did my makeup and hair so we could have a few more pictures with Maxson as a family. My girlfriends that day were able to experience everything with us and I am so grateful they did. Not only cause it made Max's life so real to them, it helped me and helps me to know that they just know.
My family was there all day the love and support they provided really carried me through. Dust was so strong and I could see the love he had for his son all over his face. A proud papa! Being able to see my Dad and Mom enjoy their grandson's life are memories I have that I wouldn't trade for any amount of money. I spent a lot of the day pulling Max to my face and kissing his little head. Best kiss ever! I only lost it completely when the funeral home came and took him away. My family was there to help me through this part. They did offer me the chance to keep Max till morning something we decided not to do, some days I regret this other days I feel peace about our choice.
December 6, 2008
When awoke the next day is when it fully hit me. I felt like I woke up with my legs amputated. I felt ripped in two not from the physical pain of the c-section but from my baby not being where he was supposed to, in my arms or beneath my heart. Ahh, this was the hardest part of the whole journey the time when I can say the pain about did me in. Dust didn't know what to do with me, he called my parents and my whole family came in to console me. Later that day a close friend came and laid with me in my bed all day. I drifted in and out . Not only did Dustin lose his son but he had to watch me go through such a difficult time this thought alone can bring tears to my eyes.
The next few days were really hard for us. Nights especially, I would wake up and Dust would be sleeping and the reality would hit me again and again. One night there was a nurse I don't remember her name or know if I would recognize her face, she said she was called in and never really works in OB, anyway she held me while I cried and shared her own loss of two children with me. A Godsend? I believe so but I don't believe in coincidences being that, I believe in a higher power working in a higher way, some call it miracles. She was there that night to help me maybe like no else could.
Dustin slept in a chair next to my bed every night, poor guy. My sister Shelly stayed late visiting with us a couple of the nights, which says a lot because of her busy life. Prayers were pleaded and loads of support were offered. I know I have stated this before but having and losing Max was such a humbling experience.
My hope in writing this out is I may heal a bit more today, and that you may become even more a part of that day! I know this post is filled with lots of tears and pain, I pray you are also able to see the joy and the very real, beautiful story God wrote through Max's life.