Wednesday, April 9, 2014

One foot in front of the other...

One foot in front of the other, now do it again, and again...one step at a time!

On the night that Lucy died, just after midnight, the funeral home came to the hospital to pick her up and take her with them.  Incidentally, this was the first time that Lucy ever went anywhere without me.



Our family of six was snuggled up all together in Lucy's bed when the funeral director came into the room.  We were studying Lucy's features, tracing our fingers over her beautiful face like we were going to be taking the most important exam of our lives on them.  When he first approached the bed he attempted to introduce himself to us, but then suddenly had to step out of the room as his emotions got the better of him.  Some might criticize and say that this was unprofessional of him.  Not me, it meant the world to me that he was so emotional.  In my mind it meant that he could immediately see that our girl was so loved, so beautiful, so peaceful, and too young.  

When they left with Lucy's body to take her back to the funeral home, a guttural cry came bellowing from the depths of my soul.  My arms ached from the abrupt emptiness, my heart shattered into a million pieces never to be whole again, the moment I handed her over to Drew who placed her on the gurney that would wheel her away.  I kissed her sweet sweet lips one more time, wiped away the foam that was coming from her mouth, and repositioned the single white rose that the funeral director brought to be placed on our little girl's chest.  "She would have loved this", I said with tears pouring from my eyes referring to the rose.  I could feel my legs start to give way to the pain that was pressing down hard on me. The enormous sadness and excruciating pain, they were so overpowering that I struggle to remember many of the events or any other emotions from that time.  

The night Lucy died we were faced with having to make a decision on where we were going to go after she left. We really had not given any thought to this ahead of time, because we had no idea when Lucy was going to die.  The kids and Drew had been staying at the Ronald McDonald house across the street from the hospital for nearly three weeks, we could have gone there.  The circumstances were insurmountable; we had never gone home without our girl, never not signed discharge papers and scheduled clinic visits, never not had to wait on our infusion company to deliver supplies.   How do we do this?  Where do we go now?  I decided that I wanted to go home, with my husband and three remaining living children, for the first time since December 16th, 2013.  The emotions inside were ripping me apart, I really felt the desire to go home, even though I had no idea how I was going to walk into our house without Lucy.  Despite our kids crying and saying that they wanted to stay, we packed up the essentials and left the rest for the nursing staff to do for us.   It was late, after 1am, we were exhausted, and deeply and profoundly sad.  Nonetheless we had decided that the time had come for us to go, it was time to go home, without her.

I had no idea how I was going to do this; how I was going to walk out of those hospital doors without her, pushing her empty wheelchair.  I gripped the handle of her wheelchair with both hands, relying on it for support, and walked out of the hospital that cold cold night accompanied by family and friends.  I kept repeating to myself, put one foot in front of the other, now do it again, and again...one step at a time!

Yesterday marked two months since we last held our baby girl, two months!  I wonder what her days are like, what her body looks like totally healed.  Our life will never be the same without her...

6 comments:

Clarissa said...

continued prayers

Penny said...

I cannot begin to fathom your pain, your grief, your sadness, and above all, your loss. It is easy for those of us who have not experienced this pain to say the usual; "God will comfort you, time heals all wounds, at least she is in no more pain" but the reality of it all is that we have absolutely no idea how hard this really is. What I do know is that your words will bring wisdom and hope to someone else. Your understanding will help someone else some day, understand their pain. Your clarity on the finality of the death of a child will give someone else comfort when they won't have any idea how to deal with it, except to put "one foot in front of the other". Thank you for your honesty and insight on a subject that we shy away from; dying. It happens to us all, some sooner than others but it will happen. When I say that I am praying for peace and comfort the words ring hollow because I know it is the very thing that alludes you at the moment. She is a beautiful girl and I wonder what it's like for her now. Wishing you and your family God's mercy and grace.

Kim Anderson said...

Praying for peace

Clara-Leigh said...

Such heartache I cannot imagine. Only my prayers I can offer. Oh, and I can fight Mito like nothing else I have ever done for our son, for Lucy, and for those coming up behind us in this wretched process. Prayers of hope for Eternity to not feel so far away.

Julie said...

I've been reading along only since the beginning of the year, having stumbled on your blog through Facebook. Thank you for telling your family's love story with such grace.

~Jana~ said...

Tears streaming down my face. You described your experience with such a realness. I could only imagine. You're amazing...amazingly strong! You and your family will make it through... Lucy strong! Thank you for continuing to share your journey with such truth.