I remember it like it was yesterday. The call that ushered us into our "new normal".
Something in my gut just told me that I needed to answer it on my iPhone and not allow it to come over the Bluetooth speakers as my four-year-old grandson sat in the backseat watching his Veggietales movie.
On the other end there was a wailing sob. The sob of our oldest daughter, Meagan.
Just an hour earlier she had stood in the doorway of my office with a concerned look on her face. She came in to let me know that she had called her obstetrician's office and he had told her to go on to the hospital.
You see, she was 32 weeks along in her pregnancy and she hadn't felt her daughter, Desi, kick all day. It had happened before. But there were always ways to make her move. Drink something cold. Eat something sweet. But today, none of those little tricks seemed to be working.
So, we rushed out the door. Her in her car. Me in mine. We headed to the hospital. The doctor's office had told her to go straight up to labor and delivery. Derrick was going to meet her there with Davin. I was going to pick up Davin and take him home with me. We planned to meet up later, maybe for dinner where we would laugh at how pregnant women's emotions can get the best of them at times.
Davin and I had driven twenty minutes or so toward home. We had just pulled off the highway onto a rural road that leads us home when the phone rang.
As I said, I answered it on my iPhone instead of the Bluetooth. That was when I heard the wailing sob of my oldest daughter. "Momma," she cried, "She's gone! Desi's gone!"
My heart was in my throat and tears flooded my eyes, but I had this little four-year-old looking at me; so I tried to speak calmly. She asked me to come straight to the hospital. So, Davin and I made a u-turn at the very next intersection and headed back east...toward Houston...and toward my baby.
One stop was made on the way. Derrick's mom, Teri, had called and wanted to pick up Davin. She was concerned about how he would respond to seeing his parents raw grief. So, we swung by the Wal-Mart parking lot. I told Davin that he was going to stay with Granny that night and that I would see him later. He's always up for a trip to Granny's house. Granny has a swimming pool! So, he thought nothing of it and went on his way.
I called Jim as soon as Davin was out of the car. I knew I couldn't call him earlier because I wouldn't be able to control my emotions. I filled him in on what was happening and asked him to meet me at the hospital.
We pulled up at nearly the same time and parked near each other. We held each other for a few moments, letting the tears spill, before we heading into the hospital.
It was a moment I will never forget. It was a moment that I pray no other mother ever experiences. To see your daughter, 8 months pregnant, sobbing and with no hope.
It was a long evening. Many decisions had to be made.
In the end Meagan had decided to deliver Desi naturally instead of having a Cesarean section. So, we were told to go home and get some rest...what little we could...and be back at 7:30 in the morning when they would start her labor.
Early the next morning found us in her hospital room. Her and Derrick had talked late into the night until the sleeping pills took effect. Each decision seemed just so overwhelming to both of them.
The nurses came in and started the medications.
It was a long day of waiting. But not the kind of waiting we had experienced three times already with our other grandchildren. It was a wait without hope.
There were many, many emotions that day. So many that I can't even begin to put them in words. The thought that circulated through my head a million times was, "how am I supposed to say goodbye before I've even said hello?"
It was a horrible day filled with so many decisions. Live birth/Cesarean. See Desi/don't see Desi. Hold Desi/don't hold Desi. Funeral service/no service,
Late that afternoon, Meagan delivered Desi. We stayed until she was brought into the room. And, oh my goodness, She. Was. Perfect. Absolutely perfect. The red, red lips. The full cheeks. The downy black hair. Our Desi looked just like a cupie doll.
Watching my daughter hold her little girl with tears streaming down her face, whispering sweet words of love into her ear. It was one of the hardest things I have ever watched.
Jim and I were both there, as were Kelli, Brianne and Meagan's best friend, Dori. We sat by the bed, oohed and aahed over Desi and cried. A lot! We told Desi how much we loved her, kissed her cold cheek and left the hospital so that Meagan and Derrick would have time alone with their little girl and so that Derrick's family could have time to say their goodbyes too.
That was six months ago. Six months ago today when we were told that we had lost Desi. Six months ago tomorrow when we saw her face. Six months ago next week when we said our final goodbyes.
There is a song that I have always liked. It is 'Closer To Love' by Matt Kearney. There is a line in that song that says, "I guess we're all one phone call from our knees."
That was our phone call.
4 years ago