Thinking of how cute babies are makes me miss Joshua. Those cute leg rolls, their cute little tongue that they have no control over, seriously adorable dimply butts. How I missed out on those things with Joshua.
I went into the hospital in labor and Joshua died somewhere between that last push and the outside world. We went to the hospital expecting to take our baby home. I didn’t have time to “prepare” for what I wanted to do in the hospital with a non-living baby. I fully expected to be engrossed in breastfeeding, swaddling, bathing. Not mourning the loss of my son, trying to remember every detail with the little time we had, and frantically figuring out which funeral home we wanted to come pick him up.
That day was a whirlwind of sorrow and joy. Something that’s totally unexplainable to someone who hasn’t been through it. That day was a total shock to us, but as I think of having another baby and all the joys that will come with it, I can’t help but think of the things I missed out on with Joshua.
Here are some things I wish we would have done in the hospital.
- I wish I would have seen his eyes. I was too scared to peel back his perfect eyelids because I was afraid his eyes would be rolled back and I’d forever have a picture of that in my mind. But I wish I would have just to see those cute baby blues.
- I wish I would have dressed him. He was handed to us swaddled and perfect.
- I wish I would have undressed him and taken in every little inch of him. I unswaddled his arms, legs, and saw his perfect chest, but I wish I would have totally undressed him to see his cute little tushie, his back, and his round tummy.
- I wish I would have asked the nurses to leave us alone longer. Our nurses and doctors were great, but between the nurses checking on me, the doctor briefing us on what happened, the chaplain checking on us, our parents coming, and the Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep photographer coming, we barely had any time to ourselves.
- I wish we would have gotten an autopsy. Then, it didn’t matter. He died, nothing was bringing him back and answers wouldn’t calm our sorrows. Or worse, no conclusive results. When he was initially handed to us, he had tubes and IVs everywhere from the attempt at resuscitation. If we wanted an autopsy, we would have had to keep those in. We wanted to see our baby without a tube down his throat and IVs all over. But now as our second baby is coming, I can’t help but wonder if the autopsy would have given us any insight as to why he died and if we could prevent anything this time around.
My emotions are so up and down lately. I’m happy for this new baby to come, but it reminds me of Joshua, the things I missed out on, and the things I miss about him. I’m happy about pregnancy, but I’m scared we are going to get to the big day and it’s all going to happen again.