Thursday, December 30, 2010

Because of you...

Throughout this journey, I have asked myself how this happened to my family and why? I have wondered many times how I was going to make it through the day without Cayden. I have looked at the pictures and relived the moments, desperate to rewind time. I have been determined that no matter what, I won't forget his every detail I studied for hours.

I knew the day that I found out Cayden had anencephaly, that I would never be the same. The moment I first saw him, the last kiss I placed upon him, and the moment he was taken from me, have changed me forever. I have learned so many things along the way, that only Cayden has showed me.

Cayden's life had so much purpose. He has taught me....
to live in the moment,
to have a little more patience,
to love a little stronger,
to try a little harder....

because of Cayden, I am...
a stronger woman,
a more loving wife,
a better Mother.

because of Cayden...
I know pain,
I know joy,
I know sorrow,
I know love.

I also have met some amazing woman that I would not have met if it weren't for Cayden. I have learned the hard way that everyday is not promised to us. Cayden gave me so much during the short time we had him. I long for the day we will meet again....

I Love you Cayden...

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Baby Faith Hope's blog

I followed a blog during my pregnancy after finding out Cayden had anencephaly. It was the blog of a Mom named Myah. Her baby girl, Faith, had anencephaly and lived for 3 months. Her blog was one of the things that got me through my pregnancy and gave me hope. Please check out her blog:
Please read about Myah's dream of writing a book to change people's view on anencephaly by sharing our stories and photos. If anyone can help or knows of someone who can help Myah, please contact her.
I would love nothing more than to see this dream come true!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas Cayden! First Christmas without you down and the rest of my life to go.....
I missed you so much today, but I know you know that. Christmas was not the same without you! Memo and Papa are here visiting. They got us a build a bear for you. He is so cute. Memo knew that was one of the many things we intended to do after we lost you. We wanted to build a bear to put your remains in. Memo got an ornament for our tree too. It is an angel with your name on it. The kids hung it on the tree together last night, it was so nice. There was an emptiness in the home without your presence. Every time I looked at Carter, I wondered what you would be doing if you were here with us. Memo and Papa also got my digital picture frame we have been wanting to put on our Cayden table. I was so excited for it to play all the pictures of you. We put the memory card in it from the hospital right away and within minutes I was crying. I know you are in a better place celebrating Jesus birthday with him and that makes me feel better, but it doesn't make it any easier getting through the day without you. I miss you and want you here with us so badly. I would have taken no presents under our tree to have you here instead. My first Christmas without my baby boy is almost over and if there was anything that I could have done to change it, I would have. There wasn't a second of the day that went by that I wasn't thinking of you, my love. Merry Christmas Cayden Ryan. I love you my baby boy.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Let it snow!

So we got our first big snow of the year last night. I went outside alone, looked up into the sky and falling snow and took a deep breath. I let the tears roll down my cheek.

It brought me back to Feb 6, 2010 when I was discharged from the hospital. I will never forget that day. The Dr came in my room, sat on the edge of my bed and said, we are discharging you today. Cayden has beat the odds and to be honest with you, we don't know how long he will live. We think it may be awhile though. We are giving you the option of leaving him here to pass away if it will be too much on you to take him home! ( I almost passed out when he said that) I let him know right away that I would never walk out of that hospital and leave my baby behind, if I was was he! I remember being so happy, but so scared. They said they were going to leave it in the hands of hospice at this point. The neonatologist checked him and said, everything is still doing good and he is such a little fighter, I wish you all the best.
I remember being wheeled out of the hospital in the wheel chair with my two baby boys all wrapped up tight because there was a huge snow storm outside. Everyone was looking at me and saying awww. Someone said, "Oh my, look at that lady...twins!" Someone else said, "Congrats mamma" and all I could think was, if these people only knew.. I went into the lobby to wait for Ryan to pull the van up. I watched the snow coming down so hard, feeling a little nervous to take the babies out into it. The whole ride home I sat in the way back of the van with my baby boys. It was so beautiful outside... white everywhere! Now, I will forever think of the best and worst day of my life when I see snow. After arriving at home, little did I know, that Cayden was going to start having seizures every 10 minutes for the next 3 hours before passing away in my arms!
This has been such a bittersweet journey. Not very many people can understand. I know that I was very fortunate to have a baby in the end to tend to at home, but my other son still died. It still hurts. In the end, I am still a Mom who lost a baby to anencephaly. My heart is still broke and I still wish more than anything that I could wake up and this bad dream would be over.

Back to last I stood outside looking up in the sky as the snow fell all around me, I felt a sense of happiness, it felt good. Maybe the snow was a good way to remind me of that day that seems like it was yesterday. I went inside and shared with Ryan and the kids what I had just felt being in the snow again. Oh, how I wish that Cayden was here to play in the snow with us! We miss you and love you!
Love, Mommy

Friday, December 17, 2010

If people only knew....

I came across something on the internet tonight that absolutely broke my heart and angered me so much all at the same time! It was a forum on anencephaly. It showed pictures of babies born with anencephaly and a story about a mom who ctt a baby with anencephaly. Then below it was tons of comments, and what all these people wrote was terrible.
Half of them were making fun of the pictures saying the babies looked like a frog and the other half were ripping the mother to shreds saying that these babies should be aborted right away and the mother should be charged with child abuse for allowing a baby to be born like that and suffer. I wanted to scream at the computer as I was reading! I was so mad that people could say these things and nobody was able to defend them. These people are so clueless.
They have never carried their own anencephalic baby in their womb.....they have never looked into their child's eyes.....and loved them with everything in them...I know I am only one person, but I want to be a voice for our children. Our babies deserve life. It is not up to us to decide when to end a child's life. It just made me realize how many people have no idea and really think our babies are worth nothing because of their condition.
When I saw Cayden....I saw the most beautiful baby boy. He was so handsome. I loved to just look at him and now that I no longer have him to look at, I love to look at pictures of him. I miss him so much. I would carry him all over again in a second. I guess people just don't understand unless they have walked down this road. I think it just really hurt me to read those awful things people were saying.

I was given 64 hours with Cayden and they were the best 64 hours of my life. He was such an amazing little boy. He taught me a different kind of love.....a love that is so strong...
Cayden left my arms 315 days ago. It has been the hardest days of my life. It hurts so bad right now to think of having to live the rest of my life without him. It seems so unfair. My life will always be incomplete without Cayden in it.
Cayden, How long do you want to be loved?? Is forever enough cause I'm never, ever giving you up...... I love you and miss you.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Light your candles

Tomorrow is a special day and it also starts a new yearly tradition for our family. A year ago, I didn't know this day existed. The second Sunday in December is a worldwide day to light a candle in memory of all children that have died too soon. On this day, people around the world light a candle so that "their light may always shine." So tomorrow night at 7pm my family will be lighting 2 candles, as we take the time to sit down and remember Cayden.

The little project that I mentioned the counselor did with the kids was for this special day. She bought two taper candles and lots of multicolored bees wax. The kids decorated each of their own candle for Cayden with the bees wax and the candles will be lit tomorrow night in honor of him. Makes my heart happy thinking about it...anything to honor my special boy.

Here is a little poem that I found:

Children we remember
Though missing from our sight
In honor and remembrance
We light candles in the night

We will not forget
and every year in December
On Earth, we will light candles
As we remember

author unknown

So anyone and everyone, let your light shine!
Mommy misses and loves you Cayden!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Happy belated 10 month birthday Cayden

Well, I just realized that I didn't write on here to wish Cayden a happy 10 month birthday, so I will do so now. On Saturday, Dec 4th, we had driven over an our away to cut our own Christmas tree. We talked on the drive up about it being 10 months already and how we wished Cayden were here with us. We didn't arrive back home until after dark and I guess the evening got the best of me.

I am still shocked that Christmas is only a few weeks away. One second I feel so excited about it and the next, I feel motivation to do nothing. My grief feels like it is taking over at times, I don't even want to shop at all this year. I have never been like this. Ryan said to me the other day, " what has gotten into you, you haven't even hung the stockings?" I think the truth is that I don't want to! I am not ready to do this without him.

I know no matter how much time we get with our baby, it will never be enough. 1 hour, 1 day, 1 the end, we will always want more. I wish I could go back in time and hold him just once more and kiss him just once more. I miss him so much.

The new counselor came this week to talk to the kids. We were all talking on the couch. She looked at me and said, "Mom, you are so strong." but what she doesn't know is that it is almost a state of numbness when I talk about it. I feel like I go to a different place. I am a Mom that has put on this suit of armor for other people... but on the inside is the real me who falls apart at random times of the day when nobody is here to see it. The visit went well. The kids really liked her and it really helped that she could relate. She told us that she had lost 2 sons, one passed away at birth to a heart defect. She brought a project to do with the kids because we were unable to make it to her pre-Christmas preparation after loss workshop. She is going to come back in 2 weeks for another visit with them before Christmas. I think it really helped them to talk about Cayden to someone besides us. Anthony even opened up to her a little.
I pray for both of my children's hearts as we approach this first holiday without their brother.

I miss you and love you Cayden.

Baby Rachel

A friend of mine that I met along this journey, Stacy, delivered her beautiful baby girl on Friday december 3rd. Her baby, Rachel, had anencephaly. I have followed her blog throughout the last few months of her pregnancy. I have prayed for her and cried for her. Today she laid her baby girl to rest and my heart aches for her... Please say a prayer for Stacy and her family as they are going through this hard time. Her blog is:

Monday, December 6, 2010

The good days and the bad

It always seems to amaze me how some days can be better than others. Some days I find myself smiling a lot and going about my day, but then there are the days where I am so sad and cry a lot and wonder how I have made it this far in this journey....I often wonder how other Moms have done it.

In the beginning, I was lucky enough to wake up and put one foot in front of the other. I remember sitting on the living room floor holding Cayden's things, crying, and falling apart, wondering how my life could go on without him. And sadly it has. That doesn't mean that I wouldn't give anything in this world to have him again, it just means that everyday I wake up and am a wife to my husband and a mom to my 3 other amazing kids. I have watched Carter grow up for the past 10 months and enjoyed every second of it while I grieved for his brother at the same time. I have overly held Carter, co-slept, and jumped at his every cry. Can you blame me? After losing Cayden, I have realized that all those things that other people and Dr's say "spoil" a baby, well they don't matter to me. Life is way too short to worry about any of that. Tomorrow is never promised. I try to live life day to day.

Last night I laid in bed for hours before I finally fell asleep. I was remembering when the nurse finally told me Cayden was still alive and then placed both babies in my arms for the first time. I remembered starring at him for hours because I wanted to remember everything about him forever. How badly it hurt the night he passed away and I had to say goodbye. Then I started to think about how hard Christmas was going to be without him and then right after Christmas their birthday and the day he went to Heaven.....
I know I will continue to have good days and bad's just part of that "new normal" I have talked about before.
Right now I feel so thankful that I was able to carry him and be his Mommy until the Lord called him home. I would do it all over again. As hard of a journey as it is, I couldn't imagine it any other way. I just wish I could be a voice to all of the Moms trying to make that decision.

Cayden, your Mommy misses you more than you could ever know. I love you!