Yesterday, the kids and traveled to the next state to visit a dear friend of ours and her new baby girl. The sweet baby had been due on Thanksgiving and, to give you an idea of how awesome this friend (and her hubs) are, when she emailed me to tell me she was pregnant, she said that, even though the baby was due on the 25th, she always thought of Alexander, even though she knew his birthday was the 23rd. Not very many people speak our childrens' names much less their birthdays, but that is the type of person she is. She remembers. And, when she told me she was pregnant, I couldnt have been happier for someone. I'll never forget how strong she was, at Nicholas and Sophia's Memorial Mass, as she read the Intercessions with tears in her eyes... How strong her husband was as he helped take the Gifts to the priest. Needless to say they have been good friends to us and, when she told me yesterday that, had their daughter been born on Alex's birthday, they had decided to use the middle name "Alexandra", it was all I could do to not break down in tears. Like I said, good people. Great people.
Which is why, as she shared her birth story with me, it broke my heart. Because, if I could take God aside and ask that a couple get the birth of their desire, these folks are in the running. After going full term all the way, K went into labor and was in the throws of it, when her sweet baby got stuck and she was rushed to the OR for an emergency c-section. As if that wasn't bad enough, their daughter wasnt breathing and scored a 2 on the APGAR (as a comparison, Nicholas scored a 2 on his APGAR). While the team was trying to get her to breath, our dear sweet friends had the conversation of what to do if she died. And K told her husband that he would need to call me because she wouldnt be able to talk to anyone else or see anyone else.
That was what got me. I had to hug her so she wouldnt see me fall apart.
I dont want anyone to want to call me after their baby has been born. Because I will be the one who understands... if that sweet, loved child doesnt get to come home with you. And it's not because I dont want to be the parent who understands loss; I've come to terms with the fact that I mother saints in heaven. But I dont want anyone else to go through that loss, especially someone so dear to me. The fact that she had to have those thoughts- that she had to fathom the "what if" and the unthinkable- hurts my heart so much.
Thankfully, her daughter was resuscitated and is now a thriving 3 month old. She is beautiful and perfect and keeping her mommy and daddy on their toes. As I held her and smelled that sweet "new baby" smell, I found myself thanking all the powers that be- especially sweet little (saint) Alexander for watching over their daughter and getting her safely.
Because, it may sound crazy, but I think my losses and miscarriages buys my friends passes on that grief and heartache. (I know it's not true, but it's a worthwhile hope).