part a, part b, part c
With every visitor that came to the hospital, I had to suppress the urge, the desire to show off our new baby. To let people ooh and aah over her. Yet I knew that wasn't appropriate. People from church, young and old, even single men came. Each one came uncomfortably into our room. ( They had given me mine own room away from the maternity ward.) Some stopped by with gifts of flowers cards, almond roca. All stayed as long as they could and were as comforting as possible. Some stayed and chatted, making us laugh, which was very needed. One lady from our church had gone through the exact situation. She called from our of state, to make sure we were alright.
A particular group of young folks came in led by a single guy. James was so uncomfortable. James was our neighbor. He was one of those guys you'd leave a plate for because you know he'd be stopping by. I remember him standing against the wall with tears in his eyes at a lose for words. I ended up saying something funny that broke the tension in the room. He replied, "We came here to cheer you up and you're cheering us up." Where did this funny side of me come from, especially at this moment? Answer, the grace of God.
The grace of God and the normal post-delivery hormone high I got was what carried me through those dark hours of lose, grief and confusion.
My best friend Sophie and her husband spent the most time with us. They were the ones who walked out of the hospital with us. That day, those emotions are seared into my heart. I remember leaving the nurses who started out as strangers became our friends, pushed my tummy, sat with us when they had a few spare minutes. Being wheeled out with the candy and flowers and feeling like I was leaving something behind. My baby. Our baby. There's nothing like carrying the baby you prayed for, for five months only to leave her. I don't remember how much I cried those 24 hours, but I do know I cried getting into our blue Ranger looking up at the windows of the third floor. I wanted to run back and grab our tiny baby and make everything all better, to go back to yesterday when I was still pregnant. Go back to before it hurt so bad.