This is going to sound like a lecture, and it is. A lecture to myself to read over when the grief is larger than my healing. Here goes: When there is something that is my fault and I deserve the consequence, then that is one thing. But, when something terrible happens to me and I know I did nothing to deserve the outcome, that is quite another.
When I think of Wyatt, I would not change what I did for him or for me or for our family. We went through months of anguish and the family came through it all with me. Worry, anxiety, terror, lack of joy…these are what I felt most of the time. I would not change this however, because saving Wyatt was what I was doing. And, I did it. I got to meet him in person and love on him every single day of his life. I did everything I could for him.
Before Wyatt was born, I stopped walking around and doing any unnecessary exercise or moving around, per the doctor’s/surgeon’s orders. I started this behavior change at 18 weeks. I used the escalator and elevator instead of the stairs, so that I did not strain my uterus and the baby while he was growing. I endured surgery after surgery because those were options to help him grow just a little bit more which meant he was getting stronger and older. I left the job I love at 29 weeks, so that I could stay home and rest and be in the healthiest possible mindset. Then at 31 weeks my water broke and I lay in the Antepartum wing for 3 weeks, tremulously waiting for Wyatt’s blessed arrival. Once he was born on that Friday, February 19th, one week later I moved my home to Los Angeles to be within five minutes of Kaiser Sunset and their NICU.
I did it all for him and it was right and I followed my heart and I will not feel bad for that. Not for one second.
Wyatt lived for 55 days and he did so because we sacrificed so much and he was worth it all. This terrible tragedy happened to me and our family, and I am going to hold my head up high, because I did nothing to cause it. Bad things happen to good people like me, they just do. I would rather something awful happen that I did nothing to cause, then have something awful happen and I look at myself and have to admit, ‘yep, this is totally what I had coming, I should have made a different choice’.
But, no, that is not what happened with my son.
I’m going to repeat it: I did everything that I could. When Wyatt was in the NICU, I lived on the philosophy of one day at a time. I read and re-read Martin Luther King’s quote about seeing just the stair and not the whole staircase. I found comfort in Biblical verses that expressed how God reveals only what I need to know, when I need to know it. I combed over lyrics of songs and hymnals until I found exactly the solace I needed, and I repeated it to myself and Wyatt over and over, and kept moving forward, progressing.
While pregnant, I rejoiced tiny and significant triumphs: from feeling him move around in my growing belly and seeing a beautiful skyline outside my perinatal appointments, to receiving uplifting cards and texts from family. Once born, I would sit outside his isolete and read to him, I did this and I loved every minute of it. I would reach inside his bed with my hand and lay it gently on his padded arms. Feeling such warmth and connection, I could not describe, I wouldn’t move from that very spot until my legs went numb.
I am a great mom and I am proud of everything I did. Wyatt died and that is not my fault. He should have lived a longer life, and he should be here. I feel that in my heart as the honest truth. But it didn’t work out that way and I don’t know why it didn’t. All I do know is, that me and Brian are the best parents for Wyatt and we did everything in our power to keep him here as long as we could. And after that, it was in Another’s hands.
I loved you and love you every single minute of every single day, little baby.