Thursday, July 29, 2010

Our Day

On June 4th, when I awoke from surgery and the doctor stood over me saying, "The baby didn't make it, the baby didn't make it", I thought I was living a dream. I remember, at some point during that weekend, asking my husband if he felt like he was in a dream too.

I continued to think about the fact that just a week ago I was living a normal life, was so excited about this life growing inside me, was completing a baby registry for my upcoming baby shower, was picking out colors for our nursery, and had just seen the doctor a few days ago and was told "you are doing great". How could my life change so quickly? How could I wake up one day and everything slap me in my face?

How is the biggest question, but it did. I quickly went from focusing on simple things like the colors of a nursery or what the theme was going to be, to medical terms like Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome and Hydrops. I went from talking with friends and family about whether I was having a boy or a girl and baby names, to asking them to pray that our baby would live another day.

In a matter of eight days, I learned what most people take their whole lives to learn. I learned that life is the most precious gift of all, it truly is a miracle. I learned that our time living needs to be spent with friends, family, and appreciating and taking in everything the world has to offer.

June 4th was the worst day of my entire life, as I lost the dream that I had for so long. I lost my baby, my son, my Wyatt. But June 4th was also the day that I truly began living. It was the day that my life changed for the better. The day that I began to see things the way we are meant to see them, as gifts not to be taken for granted.

Although my Wyatt is no longer here in my arms, he is still with me. He shows me this everyday as I remember to appreciate the small gifts in life. I seem to find myself listening closer to the birds singing, taking in the beauty of a butterfly as it passes me, and looking to the sky to wonder where my little boy may be. I no longer stress out about small things that will mean so little when I am gone. I continue to find reason for everything, as I know there is a plan which is out of my control.

My Wyatt and I share not only our birthdays, June 6, but we share something much more. The day that Wyatt received his wings, was the same day I began to appreciate life.

*** The photos were taken in my front yard yesterday. I have this beautiful butterfly that continues to return day after day. I have to believe it is a sign from my Wyatt.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Every beat is a miracle....

After trying to conceive for 26 months, I learned on my brother's birthday (12/16) that I was finally pregnant. The first round of IVF worked. I knew this pregnancy was a miracle from the beginning, but I never knew just how much of a miracle.

During the IVF process the doctor was only able to retrieve one egg. The doctor was disappointed, as were Brian and I. The doctor explained that we may have to try an egg donor if this doesn't work. Brian and I kept our heads up high and prayed all would work. It did! The doctor said, "Someone was one your side." The nurse stated, "I am shocked", she couldn't believe it worked.

Throughout the pregnancy, I considered myself lucky. I have friends who are still trying to conceive and can't. I would look at them and think "I remember that, I am so glad I don't have to do that again." I remember rubbing my stomach everyday and anxiously awaiting the birth of our little baby. I continued to think back to the IVF process and I did feel lucky that the one egg they retrieved worked... there had to be reason.

After getting back the autopsy results on Wyatt, I found out just how much of a miracle Wyatt actually was. Wyatt lived for 29 weeks and 1 day with HLHS and Hydrops. Not just HLHS, but the worst case ever. Wyatt's HLHS cause his left side of his heart not to function (which is what HLHS is) but it also caused his right side to compress causing his heart to hardly beat.

Every beat of Wyatt's heart was a miracle. For our son to live for 29 weeks and 1 day with a heart that was hardly beating was a miracle. Our little boy had a purpose here, he fought to show us that purpose, and for Wyatt, every second was a fight.

Wyatt's purpose was to show us that although life may be a struggle, you have to live it, you have to fight. There are many others who have it worse than you do. You have to remain strong and find your purpose.

What is Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome?

Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS) is a congenital heart defect that is seen in 1 in every 100,000 births. A mother that has a baby with HLHS stands a chance of 1 in every 1,000 births that her next baby will have HLHS. Having multiple children with HLHS is uncommon, but it has happened. HLHS is a heart condition which impacts the left side of the heart. The left side doesn't develop correctly and causes the right side to work overtime.
In Wyatt's case, his left side didn't develop correctly, he has several issues with valves and such, and his left side was taking on blood but not releasing it. This caused the right side of his heart to shrink in size and hardly work. Since Wyatt's heart was barely working, he began to develop Hydrops.
Hydrops was the piece that the doctors were most concerned about. Hydrops causes the baby to take on fluid and Wyatt had already built up fluid in his lungs, spleen, abdomen, and slightly in his head.
After receiving the autopsy results from our Cardiologist, it was a miracle that Wyatt lived as long as he did. Wyatt basically had a heart that struggled to beat each time it did.
Why things like this happen, I will never know. But my baby is now an angel and he will no longer suffer, for this I am happy.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Song

"...The struggles I'm facing, the chances I'm taking, sometimes they knock me down, no I'm not breaking, the pain I'm knowing, but these are the moments that, I'm going to remember most yeah, just got to keep going, and I, I got to be strong, just keep pushing on..."

These are the lyrics to the song "The Climb", by Miley Cyrus. This song was posted on a friends page a few weeks ago as it was her motivation during her struggles. Since seeing the song, I have picked the song apart. The lyrics above is my life in a nut shell right now.

The definition of struggles, which I located on the Internet is: To labor in pain or anguish; to be in agony; to labor in any kind of difficulty or distress. I would have to say that struggling for 26 months to conceive a child, countless let downs and unanswered prayers, the loss of a child to a condition so rare, and the pain of a broken heart would have to count as struggles. But understanding that there isn't a seen reason at the time, but that there is reason for everything, just proves that I may get knocked down, but I am not fully broken. I hurt inside and I cry on the outside. But I have to remember that there is a purpose, there is a life plan, a reason, for all of this.

This song couldn't be anymore right. I am going to remember all of the moments with my son FOREVER. These are the moments I will remember the most. My struggle to become pregnant, my 29 weeks of being pregnant, the 48 minutes of pushing, the moment I first saw my son's little face and held him in my arms, and the short but memorable 28 hours I spent with my son. Sadly, I will also remember the pain I felt the day we found out about his condition, the day that the surgery didn't work, and the day I had to say "goodbye".

But, as the song says, "I got to be strong, just keep on pushing on", that is what I have to do. I have to be strong for my son, so he can be at peace in Heaven. I have to be strong so I can move on, to find the reason for everything that happened to my son, my miracle child. There is a reason, and I will continue to be strong, so I can find it.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Peaceful Pearls

The birthstone for the month of June happens to be one of three choices: Alexandrite, Moonstone, or Pearl. My Wyatt was delivered on June 6. Shortly after Wyatt's angel day, my team at work ordered me a necklace with a charm and one single pearl. My manager had suggested researching the meaning of a pearl on the Internet, and we found the following meaning, "The pearl is an astral stone for the signs Gemini and Cancer, and astrologers link it to the moon. It was said in some early cultures that the pearl was born when a single drop of rain fell from the heavens and became the heart of the oyster. Pearls have been called the 'teardrops of the moon'. Some believe that pearls were formed by the passage of angels through the clouds of heaven." This is why the following experience is so wonderful.

On Sunday, July 18, my family and I decided we would head to our favorite restaurant at the beach, Claws. Of course, trying to decided what to eat, when all the food is so delicious, was yet another tough task. I finally decided I was going to get the Broiled Seafood platter. When the waitress came back to take our order, I quickly changed my mind and orders the Alaskan King crab legs. In fact, 4 of the 5 of us who went to dinner ordered the crab legs.

We all received our meals and began eating and enjoying our crab legs. As normal, I struggled to open each shell, but eventually I got them opened. The crab meat was coming out in chunks, I loved it. Dip it in melted butter and eat it, yum. I ate the first cluster of legs, and moved on to the second. Crack, crack, dip, yum. The first leg of the second cluster was devoured. On to the second leg. I cracked the leg right at the middle joint, I pulled out the large chunk of meat, dipped it in the butter, and placed it in my mouth, expecting to enjoy it just as much as the last. I began to enjoy the meat, when I realized I was biting down on something extermly hard.

Thoughts ran through my head: What could be so hard coming out of a crab? The shell, I thought. But the way I cracked the shell, there wouldn't have been a piece that came off. I began to try to separate the meat from the hard objection that I had just bit down on. I removed it from my mouth and showed Brian what it was. As I was showing him, I felt two more hard pieces of something, I removed those also. I now had 3 hard white objects that I had removed from a single piece of crab meat. I placed the objects in a napkins and continued eating.

After arriving back to our condo, I began researching on the Internet to see if crabs could make pearls, and sure enough this is what I found: "Pearls that are considered to be of gemstone quality are almost always nacreous and iridescent, like the interior of the shell that produces them. However, almost all species of shelled mollusks are capable of producing pearls (formerly referred to as "calcareous concretions" by some sources) of lesser shine or less spherical shape." I also found a few other stories of people finding pearls in crab legs recently.

Wyatt became an angel on June 4. If you have read my previous blog "Is there a playground in heaven?", you know that Wyatt has two friends with him in heaven. His first friend became an angel on May 30 and his second friend became an angel on June 3. Three pearls, three angels.

Pearls are rare, and even more rare coming from a crab leg. Is this a sign? I have to believe it is. As you can see from the photo, there is one large pearl and two small pearls. I truly believe that Wyatt sent me this sign to provide peace for those left on Earth. The pearls signify that he and his friends peaceful passed through the clouds of heaven.

Endless Love

Some people say that since I never lived outside the womb that I was never alive. Some tell my mommy that she wasn't a mommy since she never held me alive. Some even say that naming me was too much.

But why? I knew my mommy's and daddy's voice. I remember what it was like to be carried by my mommy. I know what it was like to live and fight for my life. I think I fought harder than most people would ever have to fight, and that there shows I was alive. You see, I had a very severe case of HLHS which caused my fetal hydrops. When the doctors found out about my condition, it was already too late, I was just too sick. I continued to hang on, so my mommy and daddy could see I was a fighter. That is why I have my name, you see, Wyatt means warrior and mommy and daddy knew I was their little warrior.

I do want everyone to know that I was alive, and my mommy gave me a good life for 29 weeks. Mommy and Daddy loved me so much that even though the doctors thought the worst, my mommy and daddy hoped for the best. They tried a surgery to see if they could help me, but it didn't work, my time in my mommy had ended but the love for mommy and daddy lives on.

I love my mommy and daddy so much and to show them I send them signs. Just little ones, you know, so they know I love them so.

Please know that I am glad to have my mommy and daddy, cause they know what life is all about. They
know it is a precious gift. My mommy and daddy know what love is all about too. They know it starts without a beginning and it goes on forever, endless love.

Friday, July 16, 2010

"Is there a playground in Heaven?"

A few days ago my mom asked me, "Do you think there is a playground in Heaven?" I didn't answer her as I just thought about what this playground would look like. Would it have an angelic glow? Would it have slides and swings for all? Would there be a lot of little ones playing and laughing around it? But the biggest question I asked myself was, who would my Wyatt be playing with, did he have friends to play with on the playground of Heaven?

Shortly after the day I was asked about the playground in Heaven, I had asked Wyatt for a sign that he was okay. Meanwhile, I had shared the story of my loss with a few other angel mommies. After finding two angel mommies who mean the world to me, I began thinking that since they lost their little boys within the same week in which I lost Wyatt, that maybe, just maybe these were Wyatt's friends. The same day I thought about Wyatt's friends, I had a dream.

My dream was about this woman who came to visit (I never saw her face), but she had this little baby boy with her. He was in his car seat and she put him up on the counter so I could see him. The dream is basically a blur from there, but I remember this baby like it was real. The little boy was probably about 2 months old, he had a perfectly shaped head, and green eyes. I remember asking the mother if I could hold the child and she said I could. As I was picking him up out of the car seat, she told me his name was "Sawyer".

Now this may seem like nothing to most. But as I said, I have meant two mommies who mean the world to me. .... And Sawyer is the name of the son of one of the mommies, who lost her little boy just one day prior to me losing Wyatt. I have never meant Sawyer's mommy in person, but she told me after I told her about the dream, that she has green eyes. And that she is a "freak about car seats".

All I can say is, "Yes Mom, there is a playground in Heaven... and Wyatt is playing with two very dear friends that he met when he arrived, their names are Sawyer and Owen."

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The Chinese Fortune

As with most Chinese restaurants, I received a fortune after eating my meal on Friday, July 9. It said, "Like the river flow into the sea, somethings are just meant to be." I wonder if this is a message from my little boy, I thought. I tucked the fortune into my wallet and thought I would pull it out later to scrapbook it. Here it is July 15, and I happened to come across the fortune again (as I forgot about it, which has been typically of everything over the past few weeks). I find myself now sitting here wondering about all of the events over the past few weeks. I continue to ask my son for signs to show me he is okay. But I think I have been making him work overtime. Looking back on the past few weeks, I believe now that everything was a sign.

Looking back on my pregnancy, I think there were signs everywhere that Wyatt was not going to remain on Earth with me, in my heart yes, but not here on Earth. I could go through all of the signs but that would take forever, so I will just cover a few of the biggest.
1. Dreams about a best friend who had passed a few years back from cystic fibrosis. The dreams started off a just blurs, changing into dreams about us growing up together and playing as we did when we were in school. The dreams then turned to lessons, like she was trying to teach me or show me something. I dreamt that she told me I wasn't having a boy, that I was having a girl. And my last and final dream of her was one that I get chills just thinking about. She was having a baby, she went into labor and delivered a baby that wasn't alive. I dreamt this dream on the eve prior to finding out Wyatt's condition (May 26). I haven't had a dream about her since.
2. About a month before Wyatt's condition was diagnosis, I found myself daydreaming and thinking of how I have so many nieces and nephews who are healthy. I thought about how we have so many children in our families and not a single one has a major health issue. In that same thought, I found myself thinking that Brian and I would be the ones to have an unhealthy child. I don't know why I thought that thought that day, but I did and I can't stop thinking about it.
3. As I now think back on some of the things people said to me, most of them weren't congratulations or hugs and kisses... most of the words were "enjoy the time you have being pregnant", "life is a precious gift", "this will be your little angel". These could all be things someone says to someone when they find out they are pregnant, but I am wondering if it could have been a sign.
4. My sister-in-law purchased countless angel pins and charms for me when she found out I was pregnant. Why? She didn't for her other sister-in-law. And why angels??? Was it another sign?
5. We saw Wyatt's heart beat for the first time on Christmas Eve, was that God telling us something? That he can give and he can take away.
6. I found out I was pregnant on my brother's birthday, and I delivered my son on my birthday. Why???

Since June 6, Wyatt's angel day, I think I have been missing the signs (although they are right in my face). Some that I can think back on now are below:
1. Wyatt's memorial mass on June 12, during communion, there was a bird outside stain glass window trying to get in. I didn't see the bird, as I was crying with my head on the alter. But all of my family and friends saw this little bird.
2. Butterflies, butterflies, and more butterflies.. I have never seen so many in so many beautiful colors, and so close they get....
3. I walked outside on Sunday and looked up to the sky... I noticed two white birds flying behind a black bird. I only caught a glipse and they were gone. They were not seagulls, cause they were small, tiny birds. Where they doves???
4. The last sign, the dream... I will not get into the dream right now.. but I know it was a sign that my little boy has already made friends in heaven and they are on the playground in heaven. (I will save this dream for a later post, it needs one of its own, as it is very special.)