It's half past midnight and I just saw the date on my computer screen. Today was supposed to be a happy day. You see today I would have been 39 weeks pregnant, a milestone I looked forward to my whole pregnancy. The day when our little one would have been perfectly developed and ready to be met by a world that loves him very much. Today would have been that day, one of the happiest days of my life.
Instead...today I have sad news. Today is a reminder of what I don't have, of what I lost, of what I miss. On May 24th 2012 I delivered the cold and still body of my sweet baby boy Evan Matthew Coy... it's Matthew with 2 t's (I've been miss spelling it a lot lately, sorry baby). Our young fighter gift from the Lord went to be with his Father sometime between Monday May 21st at 4pm and Wednesday May 23rd at 8pm. I wish I could recall the last time I felt him kick but as of now it's all a blur.
I wrote this e-mail on Saturday after it all happened, I know one day I will want to read it again so here it is:
Before I type any details I want to say that yesterday our miracle became tangible to us. I'm not exactly sure of the time but the moment our sweet Evan's heart stopped beating he was healed. Of course not in the way we wanted it to happen but in the perfect way His creator decided would be best not only for him but for us. I'm not saying this to sound spiritual or inspiring, I believe every word with all my heart and that belief doesn't make my heart or arms ache any less, it doesn't make this time any easier and it certainly doesn't stop tears from pouring out of my heart and eyes every time I think of our sweet boy.
We had an appointment on Monday with the cardiologist and his heart was doing perfectly fine as it had been the whole time. After that we met with the OB and we agreed that we would plan a c-section for week 39. On Wednesday night about 8pm I started to have contractions, I was awake all night as they became more regular and intense. At around 7am we decided to head to the hospital, they where going to hook us up to a monitor to check his heart and my contractions but they couldn't find his heart. They did an ultrasound and confirmed that his little heart was no longer beating. We held each other and cried trying to suck the news in and make decisions. We called Sharon, she came in and was everything we couldn't be at the time. God has been so good by putting the Cooks in our life. Who knew that my husband's boss' wife would guide me through labor, I don't think that's a common occurrence but God doesn't have limitations as on how he gives us what we need. Our OB came in to confirm with yet another ultrasound that Evan was no longer with us. Let me mention that we suspect that this OB is a believer, he advocated for Evan's life from the moment we met and he always referred to him by name, God's provision yet again. After that second ultrasound we started discussing what was next. They admitted me into labor and delivery to get things going. Although I had been having contractions all night I wasn't dilated at all do they gave me some pill and waited. It didn't seem like it for me because contractions just kept getting worse but I progressed to 5 cm fairly quick Melanie was documenting my contractions and when she said they where 2 mins apart I found it hard to believe since I felt I was hardly getting any breaks from the pain. Let me tell you that delivering Evan has been probably the hardest thing I've had to do in my life. I had to focus on breathing through every contraction but sometime they would get so painful that I would lose focus and only think of what was really going on. Nurse Sharon did a great job keeping me on track and helping me do what needed to be done. And Bruce did a wonderful job holding my hand, being loving and even breathing with us through every contraction. I couldn't have asked for better people to be by my side during this time. It seemed like an eternity but I finally got to the point were I was allowed to push. What a relief! It took a couple of contractions and several pushes but we did it and Evan was out been wrapped and handed to us. The peace and quiet in the room were amazing, all the doctors and nurses stood back just watching in utter respect of the moment we were living. For a while there it was only the three of us, our Evan is beautiful. Bruce was in awe of how much he looked like me. His nose is like mine, my dad's and my grandma's! He had beautiful dark hair and perfect little lips. After he got cleaned up and wrapped up they handed him back to me and I could see his feet a tiny copy of his daddy's feet! What a wonderful experience to see the fruit of our love in one little person! After we got cleaned up we got to spend some more time with him, what a precious boy, he looked so peaceful and beautiful. It was hard to stop looking at him, I wanted to memorize every feature so I will never forget his face.
After we spent quite a while with our son the nurses took him to take some pictures, then they took pictures of all three of us. Melanie brought us dinner so we said good bye to our man, we ate and visited for a while. They moved me to another room and later my parents flew in from Mexico City. We hugged and cried and they got to meet their grandson. It was such a beautiful moment in which all of us in that room where focused on our Evan. We held him, I didn't want to let go, I couldn't stop looking at his cute face, it was a precious time that I will treasure in my heart for as long as I live. Time came to say good bye, only to his body, only for now, only until we meet in Heaven. I kissed his forehead as much as I could. I put him on the onesie and hat I had packed for him. I wrapped him up real tight and put him in the little basket they had brought him in. I told him to say hi to his siblings for me, I told him how much I loved him, and I said good bye. That might have been harder than delivering him.
We were blessed that every doctor and nurse were so caring and compassionate. We didn't have to struggle with anyone and no one tried to minimize what we were going through. We know those are answered prayers. Today a genetics specialist checked Evan and against all odds came to talk to us, he let us know that the diagnosis was a ruptured large omphalocele, which means that most of his liver and intestines were outside and that at some point they were covered by a membrane but it had ruptured leaving his organs exposed to the amniotic fluid for too long which they believe was the cause of death. He also said that although this condition is sometimes associated with other syndromes in his case it was an isolated event. After that talk we were discharged. Adding to the list of hard things we've had to do was walking out of that hospital with an empty belly and empty arms. Thank God for thoughtful friends who send a bouquet of roses to fill that emptiness.
I am doing well physically, I haven't had any pain or weakness. Which is good because I think I'd rather cope with only one kind of pain at the time and my heart hurts enough as it is. Bruce is hurting just as much but he has been an awesome support. Seeing him look at his Evan has been one of the most precious things I've ever witnessed and the love and tenderness he's shown toward me have been above and beyond anything I could ask for. I am blessed with such and amazing husband and daddy of our kids. We know this is the beginning of our grief because no matter how many kids we get to keep on this earth no one will ever take the place of our Evan. We will always miss him and have him in our hearts. Our Evan was a fighter, he survived beyond what was expected against all odds and we are so very proud of him. We are also thankful that we have the privilege of being his parents, that we could fight for his life, protect him, hold him and love him. He came into our life to bring us lots of joy and dreams but also to be used to strengthen our love. To draw us closer together and to God. We are broken but we still have hope and we don't plan on giving up any time soon.
It's been two weeks since the hardest day of our life. My heart is still broken and the pain is still here. Life is slowly going back to normal and I'm lost as to what I'm supposed to do or how I'm supposed to feel. I'm not quite ready for normal yet. Most days I have to make myself get out of bed and take a shower and get dressed and eat. If I didn't I would sleep.
I miss you little man, mommy loves you so very much!