Monday, September 4, 2017

Happy Birthday, Jake!!!

It's been awhile since I've been on here, and while that's no surprise to those that follow this blog, I found it fitting that on such a day as this, I come back to write...

Today is what would be our first son's 14th birthday. How has it been FOURTEEN years?!?! It feels like just yesterday, we were sitting in the hospital room at the Army hospital in W├╝rzburg, Germany waiting and wondering to see if our son would survive. At just 21 weeks, my water had broke (for unknown reasons), and there was very little hope. James was there with me instead of in Bosnia with his company, where he was supposed to be that day. Sitting there in tears, knowing the worst was probably upon us. Then we received the news that his heart had stop and the dreaded news was received. I can't believe it's been so long. We were newly weds, having only been married just over a year at that point. So excited about having our little guy and starting our life as a family. Then this happened. After delivering our son, Jacob Tyler, silently, we sat there and just stared -- trying to memorize every feature. We knew that not only was this the day we got to meet him, but it was also the day we had to say goodbye. So much to swallow. I'll never forget how beautiful he was. His sweet little body was so fragile, yet you could tell he was his daddy's son with his features. Our could it be that this happened? The shock of it all was overwhelming.

In the midst of all the sadness, I'll never forget the uncontrollable laughter that came when we read the title on the front of the bereavement package that we received. Being huge Big Lebowski fans, seeing the title, "Bereavement," made us think of the particular scene in that movie when that comes up and through the tears, we both started laughing and couldn't stop. It was just so unreal. Yet, I'm thankful for that little moment -- it helped lighten the mood.

Thinking back to this time feels like it was just yesterday, and yet here we are...two healthy (not so little) miracles and the bittersweet memories of the time before them. I'm so thankful for where we are now. I never thought we'd see this day. It'll never be easy, but it definitely helps getting to hold our two (living) boys while honoring our firstborn.

This year is particularly hard though. Last night, while out to dinner with our little family, James got the text that a former coworker lost his son at 36 weeks. This is the same coworker that we recently celebrated with at their baby shower. If you know me, that was a huge step. For years and years, I've refused to attend baby showers. They were just too hard for me -- to the point that I'd literally get a migraine just from attending. But we were so happy for them. We wanted to share with them in the joy that was to be. Then to receive that text last night...similar to what we experienced when losing our daughter, Olivia, they noticed no movement so they went in and received the worst news imaginable. After days of labor, they delivered their sweet boy still last night. Adrian James -- such a beautiful name for a sweet little angel. My heart breaks for them. We were already talking about our little angel, Jake, then to get that text...I couldn't help but look across the table at our two miracles and just want to hug them that much closer. No situation is the same, so we could never say we truly know what they're going through, but we do know the immense pain that they're feeling. We know the comments they'll be receiving in the days/weeks/years to come -- the comments that while people mean well, hurt and dig right through the heart. Knowing that they're starting their journey in this unfortunate club of baby loss parenthood -- it absolutely breaks my heart...

If you're reading this, please say a prayer for the parents of sweet little Adrian James. They're experiencing pain that no one should ever have to imagine.

We will be remembering Adrian James as we honor our sweet by, Jacob Tyler, tonight. Samuel has already planned out what we'll be doing -- balloons and cake are in order. May we never forget these little angels -- so loved and wanted. <3

*Edited to add a couple photos from tonight...

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