Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Hospital Bracelets

Today I was going through the nursery while Sierra napped. I didn't feel like it, I felt like moping and being sad, but I am running out of time.

Adelyn's memory box that the hospital gave us had been sitting on the dining room table for awhile. Finally one day, I don't remember when, I decided to move it into the nursery - since that was "her" room. So it's been in there for awhile, along with another box my aunt gave me where I keep all the cards we received, but they barely fit in it.

Last summer, I bought one of those photo boxes from Michaels to use for her. I had one for Sierra where I keep things that cannot go in scrapbooks - her little hat, a hand print mold she made at the baby-sitter's, etc. So I thought I should do the same for Adelyn. When things didn't go as planned, I wasn't sure what I should do. Should I keep the box the hospital gave us - it isn't anything great, but it's HERS. Should I make her one? Should I use the one I was originally going to use? Or both? I still haven't decided to be honest. And now I even wonder where I should keep the boxes. But today I did actually unwrap the box I bought and open it. There were a pile of papers on top of her hospital memory box, so I thought I would put them in the other box. Among them are her death certificate (both of them since the original one had the wrong time on it) and papers from the funeral home. I hadn't looked at that stuff for awhile, and it was hard all over again. Maybe because it had been awhile. So then I decided to open her hospital memory box to see what was in it and if I should put it all together or what. Inside were two hats (not sure why she had 2, but one we tracked down when she was sent to get her autopsy at another hospital), the stupid smock thing they put on her instead of asking for her outfit (seeing this made me angry) and the pictures the hospital took of her (these made me even angrier, they are SO awful). And then, in the bottom of the box, this:
I'm not sure what it was about seeing those, but it was too much for me today. So many things flashed in my head. She never got to wear the bracelet, and I didn't get to wear the matching one. Instead I saw a very vivid memory of her - the next day we asked to see her one more time before we checked out. I was hoping the tube would be out of her mouth but it wasn't due to the autopsy. Anyway, I remembered unwrapping her from the white blanket (where did that blanket go anyway - I'd give anything to have it) and just looking at her whole little body. I remember my husband asking me what I was doing. I just wanted to SEE her, inspect every little bit of her, after some of the shock wore off. I was afraid to really touch her, to hold her, because she was so cold. And in my mind all I remember about her little body, is seeing her ankles tied together with a morgue tag on them. And this afternoon I thought, she never got to wear her hospital bracelet, only a morgue tag. And I just completely fell apart.

And then I started thinking about how very soon, a new baby would get to wear almost identical hospital bracelets. The first of many things this new little person will get to do, that his/her sister never got to do. And my heart is broken all over again for my baby girl. While I know she is in a "better place" than here, she never got to experience one moment of this life. I can't think of any other way to describe it, except bittersweet. Very, very bittersweet to think of another baby that gets to live and BE, because she didn't and couldn't.

And that's all I can write for now, because I can't see the screen through the tears. Oh, how I wish I was planning a 1st birthday party instead of reliving some of the most painful moments of my life.

Mommy loves you, baby girl, and even though I never thought it was possible, I miss you even more today than the last time I thought of you.


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