I find myself having reoccurring flashbacks of specific moments surrounding Luca’s birth.
Most recently, it is the moment I woke up, out of the anesthesia, after my emergency cesarean. Gina was there by my side, and I think the first thing we talked about, was how bummed we were that we’d had to have a cesarean to birth Luca. The plan all along was to welcome him in to the world in the gentlest way possible, birthing him naturally, in an unmedicated and relaxed setting.
Then I said to Gina “looks like I’ll need to take a little longer off of work”.
We were still so innocent at that very moment. That those words came out of my mouth and I had no idea my child had been pulled from my womb without a heartbeat and already brain dead, cracks my heart, and takes away my breath.
My son. I carried him in my womb for 39 weeks and 1 day.
No one knew he was sick. They had no idea his placenta had given out.
I had done everything I could to give him the healthiest environment to grow in, and I had no idea he was, for the last few weeks, clinging to life inside of me.
It leaves me with feelings of shame, guilt, and blame.
I’ve learned these are normal feelings for mothers who have experienced this trauma, and while it reassures me that I’m not completely crazy, it doesn’t make any of it better.
I was a perfectly healthy pregnant woman, with a perfectly healthy baby inside. Or so we thought.
The only thing we had on our minds that Sunday morning, on March 10th, was that we would be welcoming in our son to this world and begin this journey of parenting.
Before we could even change his clothes, change a diaper, count his toes and fingers, he died.
I was wheeled out of the hospital with a bouquet of roses, symbolizing the sympathy for the death of our son. I left empty handed, with a gash in my physical body, and emotionally destroyed. I not only became a parent, I became a bereaved parent. A lost parent. A childless parent.
Through the hope, there is still at times, almost 14 months later, utter desperation.
Mind-blowing, blood curdling, high pitched screaming moments where I want to hit and punch and curse at whatever invisible reason it was that took our baby from us.
I realize these are moments when I’m not my best. I am aware that I need to be present, and have hope for the future. But I am coherent, and remembering everything I experienced, and that my son existed, if only for a day.
It was only a short time, but still, it was a lifetime. Luca’s lifetime.
I will mourn and miss and mother him for the rest of my own lifetime.
My arms and my heart ache for him.