Friday, August 5, 2011

My Sensitive Child

Who knew? For those of you that know him Camden would be the last one of my kids that I would label as sensitive, but he is. I think that losing Callun changed him. I know it has affected him deeply in a way none of us will ever understand.

Colton is at Boy Scout Camp. RJ left to go visit his mom. Camden is here for TWO whole days ALONE!  He woke up yesterday worried that his brothers were "missing." Daddy was asleep in bed, but Camden couldn't find me. I was in the shower. By the time he figured this out he was in tears. The only thing I can relate this to is the morning when we lost Callun he woke up and I was gone. He wasn't alone, he was in great hands, but I was no where to be found.

I know that I have anxiety in situations, some I even find ridiculous myself but it happens all the same, I don't try to understand it or control it, I just go with it when it happens, don't fight it and it stops much faster. I am sure that he has the same issues.

Last night we got in my bed and were gonna watch NickJr until he was tired enough to fall asleep. We were watching Ni Hao Kai Lan. Simple enough right. WRONG! The one characters Panda bear fell in the mud and got dirty, he had to leave him with the Grandpa to get "fixed." The kids was crying, next thing I know Camden is hysterical! Holding his "buddies" (his mini Callun Monkey - named Canaan- and his bug eyed mini Giraffe - named Callun). He said that the show made his mind feel like it was his buddies that were "damaged." At first I giggled, and thought he is crying at a cartoon. Then of course it turned into much much more.

Cam said " I miss my brothers, I don't want to be the only brother, What if mean kids get my buddies....several crazy "buddy assult senarios", then finally I miss Callun....
There is was the root of the tears.

We all have our good days and bad days. I think that being alone has made him realize that even if RJ and Colt were gone Callun is supposed to be here. I feel it, I think it all the time. I make sure that I don't talk about it in front of him as much as I think it, but he obviously thinks it too. All I could do was hold him and tell him it is ok to be sad. Nothing was working to console him. He woke up after wetting my bed this morning worried about his buddies. Colt comes home tomorrow, Hopefully this will help a little.

Although I can't help but think that this is going to get worse before it gets better. We are all nervous and anxious about the baby coming (in the next 3-5 weeks) and I fear that this may be harder on everyone than I had orginally thought.

I am prepared for the new baby to bring the tough emotions and anxiety out in me, what I wasn't prepared for was the boys and how it may affect them.

Monday, July 11, 2011

My life forever changed in an instant

It has been a year since I saw my son alive. I woke about 0550 on July 12th a Monday. 
I was nursing Callun and hadn't since about 10 pm so I woke up suddenly. I had no idea what time it was until much later, much later. 
When I went to check on Callun, I knew instantly. From the moment I saw him. My heart wanted to believe different, but my mind was being honest. I knew everything that I was saying and doing was totally and completely in vain. I didn't care, I wasn't ready to give up hope that he could be revived. That somehow a miracle would happen as I held him in my arms in the entryway. 
I couldn't be 100% honest with the 911 operator. I don't remember his name but I know his voice/face. He was one of the guys that did the fire safety "commercials". I screamed into the phone all the necessary information about where I lived and the need for them to hurry. I probably could have run to the ER just as fast as what it took them to get to the house with the ambulance, but I couldn't leave Colt and Cam upstairs alone asleep. The guy on the phone talked me through what I already knew and was already doing, but I knew, I already knew.
I thought if I kept trying if I didn't say the words out loud that somehow they wouldn't be true. 
The night before my dear friend Kelly's husband left his wallet in my kitchen, she came to retrieve his wallet so he could go to work. At that moment God sent Kelly to be my angel. Kelly tried to wake Thressa, made sure Bo got locked in his cage so he didn't try to attack the police, she flagged down and opened the door for emergency personnel,made sure when I left the house I had on shoes, all in less than 30 seconds. Most importantly she knew, she knew by the look in my eyes what I didn't need to say. I just kept saying "this is bad, really really bad" I know that these are words that will haunt her forever. Images that are engraved in our minds, images we wish we could remove.
There were so many things that happened in those first few moments.  When we got to the hospital it was a whirlwind of noise, yelling, what seemed to be totally controlled chaos. I tried to sit on the floor in the corner to watch what was happening, in an effort to make things somehow different than they were. A nurse sat me in an office, where I immediately tried to contact help, someone to find my husband. 
Then I heard a familiar voice in the hall, and hesitation on the part of the ER clerk, who then decided it might be in his best interest to let this woman in the door. It was the second angel sent to my side that morning. Thressa, she may be little but not even an act of GOD was gonna keep her from finding me that morning.  Once we were together I knew that things weren't getting better. People weren't running anymore, things were getting more and more quiet, people weren't making eye contact when walking by the room we were sitting in. 

I wanted to throw up, but I couldn't.
I felt like I couldn't breathe, but I could.
My legs felt like jello.
My head was in a fog.

Instinct had taken over and I was doing and saying things as if just to keep my world in focus. Like if I stopped for one second that this nightmare would take over an become real. Then came the doctor. He said the words that I knew were coming and that I didn't want to here. "We have been working on him for more than 40 mins. At this point...." I tuned him out. I really don't know what he said after that. I had to tell the doctors and nurses to stop trying to save my baby. 

When I walked in the room they were still doing CPR. The anesthesiologist was a friend of mine, who went from a Dr doing her job to a friend who said "oh Angela, I am so sorry" when she realized that it was my son in her arms. She was there when we stiched up Camden's face after his bike crash, she was there when Callun was born, and I know in my heart she would not have given up if there was something more they could do for Callun that day. There were a lot of people in that room, some old, some young, some new, some with lots of experience, but they all had the exact same look when I walked into the room. 

The Dr stood somewhere behind Thressa and I and reminded me that I needed to be the one to tell them to stop working on Callun. These were words that never came out of my mouth. These are words you don't ever say as a parent. You don't tell someone it is ok to stop trying to make your baby breathe, make his heart start again. I just simply told them I wanted to hold my baby. At some point during all of this my dear friend Melissa and Chaplain Bridges showed up. Thressa and I were thankful to have an extra set of eyes and ears to be there for us as we were both in a fog a sea of tears and not knowing what was going to happen next

I held my son, we looked at his hands, his quirky ear, rubbed his feet, stroked his face. Tried everything to not do what we were going to have to do. The doctors wanted me to say goodbye. They wanted me to leave my baby boy and go home. I know I just kept saying I wasn't strong enough, that I didn't know how to do it, that I couldn't leave him there. I know several times I said that stuff like this doesn't happen in real life, that all of this couldn't be happening to me, to us, why us? We cried. Everyone in the room was in tears. I still replay several instances during that morning in my head only it seems that I am a bystander watching like it is a movie. A horrible scene from a movie that you have to see through to the happy ending. Only there wasn't one.

They said it was time to go, that they had gotten a hold of people and Brett would be calling soon. This was the first of many horrible phone calls that morning. I had to tell my husband that there would be no smile to come home to, that there would be no slobbery baby kisses, no little giggle, nothing would be right. After reassuring me that he would get to me as soon as humanly possible it was time for us to leave the hospital. 

The walk to the elevator was unbearable. The walk to the car even worse. The worst wasn't over, I had to tell my two beautiful boys that there baby brother was not coming back. This is a moment that I wish I could do over, but I can't. I would have taken them in the house, sat them down, but I knew if I didn't tell them right then and there that the words were not going to come out of my mouth. They are smart they already knew something was wrong, very wrong. There were police at the house, and we were not allowed to go back inside. So right there on the street I told the boys. They cried, looked at me disbelieving, no questions at this point just lots of tears. 

The weather was strange and we needed to get off the street before people started wondering what was going on. Inside Sonya's house we went, a safe place. There were so many things that started happening at this time. Things I didn't want to do. The AF equivalent to CSI  came in and talked to me, then they took all I had left of my son. His clothes, little did I know they had already taken many other items out of the house. They were awful, tactless people, who kept saying they cared and understood this must be hard but all the while making things difficult. They created my door nazis, my protectors. From that moment on no body got through without their permission. Never underestimate the power of a bunch of really short women. 

My girls did everything, helped locate phone numbers, find a way to get in touch with Julie and waited with me while I had to make phone calls that I just didn't want to make. They took care of me, but I know it was just our way of taking care of each other. Beginning that morning, we were fed, clothed, the kids were taken care of. They made me eat, sleep, shower and never left me alone. 

That night since I couldn't sleep Kelly and I sat up and talked, we both noticed that there was only one star in the sky that night, Callun, he was watching to make sure mommy was ok. I know he still watches and still sees. I never thought that I would get through that first night, let alone this first year.

There are so many people that are not mentioned here, so many details left out. Please know that you all deeply helped me and that I could not have gotten through the day alone.

My life is different now, It will never be the same. I will never be the same. I can only hope that someday there will be a cause, a cure for this horrible tragedy. I pray my boys will never have to experience the loss that I have.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

4th of July Weekend

Last year was a fun and exciting Fourth of July. Probably not anyone's ideal plan but one of the best times I have ever had on the 4th EVER! It was just me and the kids, no hubby, no other family, no sparklers or fireworks in the yard. But yet one of the best times.

Thressa and I decided to walk 6 kids to the Club for free food and festivities. The whole time we were thinking to take the car or not take the car. Well we walked, it was damp out but not really raining. So we made it there, hairstyle in tact (as long as no one touched it). We played games ate lots of food, misplaced a child or two throughout the day, and of course as the day went on the weather was looking worse and worse. 

Thressa and I had already discussed enjoy a glass of wine after the fireworks show, so as soon as the show was postponed due to weather, Sarah arrived.

Sarah arrived with all the makings for Cosmos. Now seeing as how we were all lightweights at this point we had really only planned to have a couple. I think we started at about 6 or 7pm. Then the giggling continued. Once all the kids were settled either sleeping or watching a movie the giggling got worse, and louder. I am sure Sonya can still here it through the walls (even from her new house on the north side). 

We talked laughed, joked, and goofed off until the wee hours of the morning. Then Thressa started getting creative once all the Cosmo ingredients were gone. Who knew that cancelled plans could turn out to be so much fun. 

I remember a camera and taking lots of pictures, and I am thankful for dear friends who have kept these memories best in our minds, instead of on the internet.

I am grateful for the times that we spent, just being us and hanging out. I miss you ladies! This was the second to last weekend that I was "me." Thank you for sharing it with me.

Hope everyone makes some great memories this weekend.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Simply Sad

Can't have chocolate, beer/wine, a cigarette or my girls. 

Can't fix what is actually bothering me. 

Yes I am having one of those days where I would have all of those things all at once if I could. Most days of course I fake it well. I think I have become a very good actress over the last year.

Today I just feel sad. Oddly I do not feel angry,guilty, lonely, bitter, or any of the other things that usually come with this feeling. Today I am simply sad.

I hate that our move date, and the anniversary of the worst day of our lives are so close together. The closer I get to a good day is that much closer to what I know is going to be a hard day.

I think that I am just dealing with an overwhelming mix of emotions. I think that sometimes I am losing my mind. 

I think.

I want to save everyone from the pain that I have felt this last year. A pain I cannot describe, a pain that I am not sure that I want you to understand, a pain that I do not want to share. I want to stop this pain from happening, yet I see and hear news on a regular basis that make me sad.

I know that I cannot save every baby but it doesn't keep me from wanting to. I am not a doctor, I know that I cannot do anything to help but I really want to. I almost need too. The emotional overload is breaking my heart all over again.

I am feeling anxious, nervous, heavy, out of breath much the same as I did THAT morning.

I remember every detail. The sky, the wind, the strangeness of the air. I know that I am not the only one that feels this way. I also remember every call I had to make, every call I had to answer, the call I had to wait for. I remember every hug I had and every hug I couldn't get until later and the hug I will never be able to get again. It all still feels as though it didn't happen and like it happened today at the same time. 

I wonder if writing every detail down will get it out of my head, even though I know none of it will ever leave my heart.

I cherish all of the people that were there for me that day, and for the rest that wanted to be.  I remember the faces of all the people in that room during those horrible moments. I wish I knew the names of some of these people. Especially the people who looked me in the eye, not the ones who looked away, but the ones who looked at me and knew that what I was about to do and experience would change my life forever. 

I am grateful for the two wonderful Doctors or should I say Fathers who had a heart and did what they would have wanted done for one of their own precious babies. Their kindness is a memory I can hold see and cherish forever.

I am thankful for the ones who didn't try to speak when there was nothing to say, and those who did just to help fill the silence. I am thankful for the ones that listened to me, protected me, and saved me during this time. 

I am thankful for what I have. Grateful for the ability to see what is in front of me. Simply and horribly sad for what is no longer here. 

The closer it gets the harder it gets.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Things I always look forward too

May has always been a month that I look forward too. It is my official start of summer. I love summer. 
It is my very favorite time of year. No School, BBQ's, the Beach, the Pool, sun until almost 9pm. I love Summer.
I knew that this May would be different, although I thought it wouldn't kick in for a couple more weeks. 
At about 130 in the morning last year I sent Brett off on a 4 month "deployment." If I had known now what I knew then I would have fought much harder to keep him around for just 12 more days. 

We had hoped that he would be able to come home for just a week after Callun was born. As most know now there were some that refused to make that happen. 

It is hard not to be mad at those people. I try every day but right now I would rather punch them in the face.  I won't ,but if God put a certain someone in front of me tomorrow, I can't say that I could be fully responsible for my actions.

I try not to be sad, cause it is not healthy for me to be so right now. 

I love summer and right now I just wish we could fast forward to the month of August.  I know it would not help the way that I feel right now and that I have to face what the next two months will bring, but today I just don't want to.