January 27, 2012. One year ago today.
After a stormy and scary night of labor, a team of doctors and nurses ran past the OR waiting room where my mom sat ready for the big news. It’s either Kristin or the baby, she thought as they rushed by.
It was the baby. Our sunshine.
Callie cried, a little teeny cry. So brief, we had to ask ourselves later if it had really happened.
Sometimes we wonder aloud about that cry. Was it a cry for help? Was she telling us hi? I’m here. I’ll be ok. You will be too.
We will never know.
An eery silence fell over the operating room after that.
1, 2, 3, 4. Whispered counting as the doctors worked to revive her. Trying not to be too loud.
What’s wrong? What’s wrong? I begged.
The baby is just sleepy. A doctor said, protecting me from panic as I lay open on the table.
Our Father, who art in heaven… Hushed prayers, as our ears strained, hoping, desperately needing, to hear that cry again.
But we didn’t hear it again.
They brought her to us then. She was pale, so pale. And someone was helping her breathe. She was alive and barely hanging on.
Fight Callie. Be strong. Fight. We love you so much.
And then they were gone.
Go. Be with her. She needs her Daddy.
And then John was gone too.
I was alone. Still open and exposed. I shivered and shook. And no one spoke.
Silence. The loudest noise I have ever heard.
Today, I wish we were having a cake smashing party. Loads of presents she didn’t need. Smiles.
But it’s not like that.
We are still celebrating her birth today. It is just different.
It’s a heavenly birthday.
There is cake. There is one candle waiting to be blown out. There is a yellow balloon.
An act of kindness. Lots of sunshine.
We will think of all the ways her birth changed our lives and touched so many others.
Happy birthday sweet girl. I think heaven sounds like a fabulous place to have a party. We are thinking of you fondly and missing you like crazy.
We love you, always and forever, sunshine.