Friday, March 26, 2010

BLOG THIS CHALLENGE 38 - HOW I LEARNED.....Patience, Tolerance and Empathy for Others

This is a photo of my firstborn bub, Joshua, my precious little one who was too sweet for this world......

You see, Josh was born with a condition called "Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome". It is basically where the left side of the heart doesn't form properly. This condition wasn't discovered until he was 4 days old. It was never noticed on any of the 3 ultrasounds that I had when pregnant, twice the sonographers made comment that he had such a nice strong heart beat and looked so healthy....little did they know!

When Josh was born his oxygen levels were low and they put him in an incubator saying that he would come right within the next 24 hours. Well he didn't and on Day 2 they began to look for causes. They couldn't find any reason and just kept saying he would be okay. It wasn't until Day 4 when the head Paediatrician was listening to his heartbeat with his stethoscope that he heard a heart murmur, none of the others had picked it up because Josh used to scream every time they had checked his heart and so it had been missed. This doctor just heard it faintly in between the cries. On this day he got sent to the Children's Hospital for an Echocardiogram, it was there they discovered the terrible truth for his bad oxygen levels.

We were given the news that basically we could take him home to die. At the time the heart operations they do now weren't very successful at all in this country (even now way too many little lives are lost to this condition) and his only hope would have been a heart transplant which they said we had basically no chance of getting. We got told to treasure every moment and let nature take its course.

I wanted to scream and throw things around the room when they told could this happen, had I been that bad during my life to deserve this??

Josh lived for 10 days. Those are 10 days that I will never forget. The first 4 were filled with wonder and hopes and dreams for our little man we had just created, the last 6 were filled with clutching at every moment, every glance he would give us, every little windy smile, knowing that we would never get to see a real smile on his beautiful face.

On day 9 we realised that his breathing had become gaspy and we went back to the hospital, already knowing what they were going to say. He had gone into heart failure and now it was just a matter of time.

He managed to fight on for another 24 hours for us, our brave little fighter. But while we were in the special room at the hospital where we could stay together as a family waiting for the inevitable, he gave us this little look, it made his Dad and I laugh and within the next couple of minutes he began to really gasp and started to turn a strange colour. We hit the emergency button and one of the nurses ran in and just said to me "Hold him, just hold him honey". Our dear sweet little guy passed away in my arms, gone from this world but remaining forever in my heart.

His short life taught me to never take anything for granted. To be patient with others as you never know how much your smile or encouragement may mean to them. I look at the world differently now. I went on to have 4 more healthy boys, sadly my marriage to their father didn't last but I have remarried a wonderful man who himself has a stepson, a daughter and a son of his own.

I value every minute that I spend with my family and miss them so much when they aren't around. I think that is why I struggle when my husband goes away for work, I desperately hate goodbyes.

My Dad died when I was 17, I thought that was difficult enough to come through but losing your child brought a whole new meaning to the word devastation.

As you go through your life, never forget how fragile life can be. What we have today, may not be there tomorrow. Treasure every moment. I know reading my blog sometimes,it may sound like I don't, but my blog is my venting area where my frustrations come out. I certainly don't love my family any less. Every single moment spent with them is worthwhile, be they good or bad moments, its all an adventure in the game of life!!

Hug your family tight and never let the sun set on an argument!!!


Emma said...

I am not sure what to say...

My husband wants to know why I am sitting at the laptop crying. I can't tell him yet, too sad.

As a mum to 6 week old Theodore, I cannot even imagine how you had the strength to survive such a loss, let alone live your life and be able to write about it all so beautifully.

Thank you for reminding me how precious life is.

Amy xxoo said...

I had to force myself to finish reading that post - that is so sad, and i'm so sorry that it happened to you. I'm a new mum to a 3 month old and i worry about things like that happening to him.
A very beautiful entry....

***Amy*** said...

I don't know what to say. Your post has moved me incredibly- that's the worst thing a mother should ever have to experience, and yet you've used it to learn and grow and become a better person. That's amazing.

Thank you so much for sharing

Madmother said...

So sad, so tragic, so beautiful.

Another of those times I have no words to express the emotion.

Leila said...

What an incredibly moving post. Thank you so much for sharing. Much love to you xx

Melissa @ Suger Coat It said...

Thank you for sharing your son's short life with us. Beautifully written. So heartbreakingly real.

Christie said...

I'm lost for words too, so very touching and you are so brave and amazing to write such a beautiful post on your journey.

OurGangof7 said...

Thank you to everyone that has commented on my post.
I guess when faced with this sort of situation people just deal with it as best they can and hopefully they can come out the other side a stronger person for it. I don't necessarily feel stronger, I feel if anything more fearful at what could happen to any of us in a split second. But I guess you just have to keep on going and treasure every moment you have with your loved ones.
Sadly, there are way to many stories just like mine and far too many families have to go through the loss of their own children. Just far too sad to even think about......