Capture Your Grief: Day 3 “What it feels like”

On Sunday, September 6, 2015, from 8:30am to 12:05pm was the start of a living nightmare. From the time the neonatologist came into my hospital room to give us the worst news parents could hear and to Bradley’s last breath, were a blur. I remember the main parts but the details of those hours come and go from my memory.

Getting to hold him for the first time knowing the only reason we were able to hold him was because we were having to say goodbye, that feeling is indescribable. When the nurse placed him in my arms, he opened one of his eyes for the first time ever. The same thing happened when my husband got to hold him, he opened one of his eyes for the second time. And for the third and finally time, when I held him again, it was the most bittersweet moment that my husband and I shared with Bradley. When we were ready, the nurse took us to a private room. Once we settled into the room, she brought Bradley in, while still on oxygen. She handed him to me for the very last time. I don’t remember how much time had lapsed from when my husband went to get the nurse. The nurse came into the room, removed the oxygen and she left the room. Mike, Zachery and I were left alone with Bradley. During this time, Zachery was bringing tissues to us, wiping Bradley’s nose and eyes, “trying” to feed Bradley the fruit snacks Zach had with him. That part was hard to watch.

The nurse came back 5 minutes later to check his heartbeat. And the doctor came in to officially pronounce him. Hearing them say, ” I’m sorry, he is gone” was excruciating. The immense pain is too much to describe. I couldn’t see into the future at that time. I couldn’t see how I was going to survive this. I remember thinking ” how could I continue to breath and live my life when my second born just took his last breath.”

When we were ready to hand him over to the nurse, she cradled him close to her and told us “I will take good care of him”. That was the last time I saw my baby.

Mike and I then returned to my room. My Mom had taken Zachery with her back to our house.

Returning back to my hospital room was a shitty feeling. I was angry.

My wonderful nurse was so caring and understanding. Her shift had just started about an hour before we received the bad news that morning.

She came in and asked what we wanted to do. Whatever we needed, she was going to take care of. We had just rented a breast pump from the hospital one day prior, she removed it from the room immediately so, we didn’t have to look at it.

She held my hand as I laid on the hospital bed, my eyes glazed over, and told me what to expect in the days and weeks that will follow. She too had experienced a loss roughly 20 years ago. She explained that my milk will continue to come in because my body doesn’t know that my baby died. It will be painful and she gave me some tips on how to dry up my milk. She continued on by warning me of possible triggers: going out in public and seeing women who are pregnant, newborns, babies crying, etc.

After she had done all the paperwork to discharge me, she personally walked us out of the hospital—– Walking through the long hallways out to the front of the hospital to the outside, the warm September sun shining brightly against my tear stained cheeks—I hadn’t seen the sun or been outside in over 4 days. My nurse gave me a warm embrace and whispered in my ear “you will survive this and I hope to see you next time but on a happier occasion”.

There are no words to explain what it felt like to walk out of that hospital with no baby in our arms. Like nothing ever happened. That the last 4 days we had nothing to show for. Mike loaded the car with all the belongings we had accumulated during our stay. We drove out of the parking lot and headed home, without a car seat in the backseat, without a baby.

 

{During the month of October I am participating in Carly Marie’s project “What Heals You”. Each day is a new prompt where other bereaved parents are invited to share their experiences.}

Depending on the day’s prompt I may come to my blog and write or if its short I will post directly on my Instagram 

holding-bradley

 

 

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4 Responses to Capture Your Grief: Day 3 “What it feels like”

  1. sarahdudek80 says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. Beautiful post. Sending you hugs.

  2. A year later my heart still aches for you and your family. I hope that time and writing about Bradley is helping to heal your broken heart. xoxo

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