Thursday, September 22, 2011
This morning, for some reason, I woke up wanting to see what Joshua was up to a year ago today.
Since he died, I have not been able to go through the blog posts from when he was alive. They have been too painful.
But this morning, I really wanted to see him as he was a year ago.
As I scrolled through September's posts, I came to today's.
One year ago, yesterday, Joshua started having seizures. You see, a few days before that, he coded.
I came in that morning and found Joshua blue. His stomach was distended, he was struggling to breathe, and his eyes were rolling around in his head. I picked him up, not wanting to put him down for fear that he would die in the short minute it took me to go get the nurse right outside his room. I quickly tried to figure out how to get a nurse without having to put him down, but realized that putting him down was my only option.
I quickly got the nurse, who then called the doctor. The doctor took one look at him and then looked back at me, eyes weary with concern and said "I think we need to intubate him. Something is severely wrong."
I immediately panicked. "No! He's supposed to be having his G-tube placed today, he can't be coding right now, in front of me. We are supposed to be going home next week!"
The doctor ordered me out of the room, they called for a crash cart, and my baby was quickly surrounded by the only people who could save his life. His room quickly transformed into a war zone- doctors and nurses shuffling about, syringes and wrappers all over the place, loud voices taking control and barking orders.
After a few days of allowing Joshua's body to rest on the vent, he was finally extubated. But that night he started twitching. The nurse informed me that she thought maybe he was having a seizure.
Once again, I panicked as they told me that there were a few reasons he could be seizing. One reason being brain damage from the lack of oxygen from when he coded.
At that moment, I fell apart. I felt like my world was falling apart. That was the first time that I verbally expressed that I felt like, just maybe, we wouldn't ever be bringing Joshua home.
I remember a year ago today, sitting in my friend's office (a nurse who was with us during our prenatal care, delivery, and Joshua's recovery) telling her I felt like we were losing him. I was finally grasping the fact of how severe Joshua's defect really was. I was feeling completely lost, alone, and terrified. I held onto hope that this was just another step back, and that soon we would be taking a few steps forward.
Looking back at that day, I wonder if my heart knew something my mind did not. I specifically remember saying "I feel like we are losing him. He won't be coming home with us." I didn't want to believe it. Especially in the days following when the doctors had an easy solution to fix the problem that caused him to code in the first place. Everything was supposed to be ok. Joshua thrived after that. He grew (although very slowly) and started putting some chunk on him. His personality started shining through, and I think I even saw the beginnings of a few smiles.
But what did my heart know? I'm not sure. All I know is that today, a year later, my heart is feeling the pain of that day all over again. I feel the defeat and terror I felt in those moments. The sobs that overtook me that day, have taken over me again, a year later.
As I sat in the car this morning, I literally had to fight of the gasping sobs that cause me to see stars and lock up my fingers and toes from lack of oxygen. I literally had to fight the despair that I felt as I realized that maybe, just maybe, I knew what our future would hold. I had to let the waves of sorrow have their way with me and cry out to God for relief from the pain.
One year ago today. What a hard day that was. And sometimes I'm not sure if it will ever get easier.