Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The End of Normalcy

   Normal. I'm not sure what that means anymore. It's been 3 weeks since the word normal lost its place in my vocabulary. I see people in stores with their shopping carts and I wonder, do they feel normal? Do they know I don't feel normal? Will I ever feel normal?
   I guess this is my "new normal". It's now normal for me to pick out flowers for my son's grave. To have to tell people my son died. To know that when I have another pregnancy everyone will be secretly wondering if the baby will live. To know I'll be wondering the same thing.
   I'm sure most people feel like this after a tragedy. Like the person they were is gone forever. I'm not only mourning my son's unfulfilled life, but the life I'd live if this hadn't happened. My whole way of thinking has been altered.
   Even in the midst of feeling like this I do feel hope starting to finally fade back into my life. Sometimes I can even feel joy. Like Sunday riding in the car with my husband. It doesn't mean that I don't still have moments where it's hard to breathe, but they're slowly becoming just moments.
  When I was having a moment something that helped me was what a kind friend said. Everyone has a story and unfortunately this is part of mine and my story is far from over. It helps to think of it that way, just a part of the story. I don't like how Carter James' exited but he'll always be my favorite part of my story.
   I hope that I can be a light for others in this type of darkness. Because otherwise this life taken from us feels in vain. It doesn't make his death make anymore sense but it's a way to honor his sweet spirit.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Our Sweet Baby James

     It was Sunday December 28th that I noticed something different. I started to notice around 12pm(right after church ended) that I hadn't felt our baby move since the day before. I went home to rest and did have one small movement that made me think "oh he's just slowing down like they usually do in the 3rd trimester". But by 7pm that night I was beginning to worry again. He hadn't moved. I tried juice, walking, talking, music. Everything. So I finally called the on call doctor and she told me it would be advisable for me to go to labor and delivery. The entire drive over I knew my life was about to change, and not for the better.
    I checked myself in and waited in the lobby with my husband and parents. Finally I was taken back, my husband and mom in tow. The nurse checked with a Doppler at first. No heartbeat was detected. She told me the doctor would be in for an ultrasound in a few minutes. The ultrasound only confirmed what I already knew. There was no heartbeat, he was dead. They called my doctor and he said he wanted me to stay overnight and be induced in the morning.
     Then on Tuesday December 30th at 7:41pm I gave birth to my precious first born son, Carter James Hinkle.

     He was 2lb. 10.8 oz. and 15 in. He had the biggest hands and feet, and the most beautiful little mouth. The cord was wrapped around his tiny neck 3 times. He stayed with us in the room overnight until it was time for him to go. Then 13 hours after giving birth to him I was released from the hospital and headed to plan his funeral.
    I still can't fathom that the moment I became a mom is also the moment that broke my heart forever. I can't accept that we'll never have him come in our room to wake us up on Saturday mornings like little children do. I'll never wake up in the night to feed him, or even see him smile at us. And I wonder where it all goes, the hopes and dreams I had for him.
    I'll never forget the look on Dillon's face when he knew James was dead, or how gentle he was as he held him and wiped the blood from his nose.
    I look back at the few days before it all happened. I was busy compiling the guest list for his shower and making lists of things to be done before his arrival. My parents had just given us the money that they wanted to use to buy his crib and stroller. We used it to buy his casket.
    Everything is different now. To be perfectly honest everything has lost it's meaning for me. The world has dimmed, my faith is shaken(or maybe it's just gone), and I can't just go blindly on like I had been. It's like what is there now? Now that he's gone. 
    Every decision I made involved him. Every time I ate I had to track it on my pregnancy app to make sure I was giving him enough protein or calcium. And for what? So he could die inside me at 29weeks. 
    I wish more than anything that I could have known sooner, then maybe we could've saved him. People tell me I couldn't have done anything, but I'll never know that to be true.
   Everyone tells me it get better, and I'm sure they're right. But it still can't change the fact that he's not coming home. That we won't be awaiting his first word or finding seats at his high school graduation.  If I could have the little time we had with him back I would, and I'd never leave. I'd sit there and hold him forever, and I'd find something to bring him back.

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