Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Monday August 16, 2010

August 16, 2010

We woke up about 6am and went in to check on Carter, he was stable and OK but not great. We stayed with him until we had to leave at 7am for shift change. When we came home all I could do was cry, I was so scared and I was dieing inside. I couldn't help my own child and I didn't want anything bad to happen to him, he was my baby and I needed him here with me!! My mom and I talked for a while and both cried pretty good.

We went back as soon as we could, when we got back I asked his nurse Tina if things were still stable and on an upward path. What she told me will never be forgotten. She pulled up a chair in front of us, and with tears in her eyes told us that Dr. Jenkins was really concerned about Carters kidneys, even more so than the possible brain damage. She told us that Carter had not peed since about 6:30pm yesterday. She stated that Carter was not doing well, that it was taking alot of medications and support to keep him alive and that if we could not get his kidneys to function today then there would be no hope for his body, that things would slowly start to shut down.

I wanted to throw up, and scream, and bawl!!!
This was my baby, I gave birth to him-only 13 short days ago he had to stay on this earth with me. This was not fair, this was not how things were suppose to happen! I was devastated. Tina told me that she had spoken this morning with Dr. Jenkins about letting me hold Carter and he had agreed. Mike called our families to let them know the news and then to have our moms come as soon as possible. I got to hold Carter, for the first time in 4 days or so. I loved it and ate it up, I also couldn't control myself and was gasping for air in between sobbing. Mike was crying and my mom was not able to control herself as well. We even saw the nurses crying. I held him for as long as he would let me, which was about 5 minutes and then his body couldn't handle it anymore and he started d'Estating again and we had to place him back in his bed. Both of our families came and sat with us the whole day long. There was not a dry eye in the house, even Dr. Jenkins and the staff were having a hard time.

We decided that it would be best to give Carter a name and a blessing. Mike, his dad, his brother Nate, and my dad all gathered around and Mike gave Carter a sweet blessing. I tried hard to listen but between my sobbing and the others around me, I wasn't able to hear most of what was said, but I didn't need to hear, I could feel the peace spread over me thanks to the blessing. Mike did a great job, naturally he sobbed through the whole thing, but I wouldn't expect anything different. I'm so proud of him! He is and will always be a great dad and I know that Carter knows that!

Dr. Jenkins came over many times talking to us about Carters digression. We knew that the end was coming, and that we were going to need to make the call on when it was time. I prayed and prayed and prayed that God would not make me have to say when I was done, because I wouldn't do that! This was my child and I would and could NEVER give up on him! We sat there through that night mare of a day and cried our eyes out and prayed our hearts out! This was not fair! This was our first baby, we are only 22/23-how could this be happening to us! Nothing had gone wrong my whole pregnancy and now my baby was dieing...WHY???!!!! I was never mad or upset with God, for I knew that he was not doing this to us out of spite or anger. This was Carters mission, I was his vessel to get him to this earth so that he could fulfill his eternal purpose, to gain a body and return to heaven to live with our Father in Heaven. As much as I didn't want to talk or think about it, this little boy was so completely perfect that he didn't need to go through this earthly life, he didn't need to struggle through all the mess the world has like the rest of us, he was perfect and his trial was coming to an end. He was successful!

About 5:30pm Dr. Jenkins told us that Carters potassium had gone up way to high and that the time was coming, he would not make it through the night. Mike and I went into the room and prayed to have the lord let us know when the time would come and to let us have peace. We got done praying, bawled and then hugged each other for a long while. Then we just stopped and felt the peace. God was letting us know that it was time. God was telling us that he needed Carter back, that our babies trial was done and that his mission was in Heaven. I am eternally grateful for the peace.

We walked back into the NICU and talked quietly with our baby for a few minutes. Dr. Jenkins then came over and we told him we were as ready as we would ever be, that we didn't want him to go through any of this any longer. We made the plan on how it was going to happen. All of us would go into room 109, the room we had been staying in the past few nights, we would leave him on life support for as long as I wanted and Mike and I would get to hold him. Then when I was ready the machine would be turned off and I would hold my baby until he was gone, and then for as long as I wanted/needed after.

Alyce Clegg was called to come and take pictures as a service she provides as part of a wonderful foundation called, "And Now I Lay Thee Down to Sleep". An amazing Labor and Delivery nurse named Sue had sewn a burial outfit that morning for Carter, which turned out to be to small due to all the swelling so she went home and made him another one, and let us keep the first one. All the cords and monitors were taken off and Mike and I washed and prepared our baby for his last moments on this earth.

Carter was given another round of sedation medication so that he would not feel anything in his last moments. After preparing him and having Alyce take a few pictures we all moved into the room. That room will forever be imprinted in my mind. I sat and held my baby and cried, everyone cried. The nurses stood and kept him breathing for a long time, I looked up at nurse Lesli and told her that I couldn't be the bad guy, I couldn't say when I was done because I would never be done. She looked at me with tears in her eyes and stated that the oxygen tank didn't have a lot of air left so we would let the tank be the bad guy and just run out. I agreed to this, fully knowing that she was lying, that they would never come into a situation like that without a full tank, but I didn't care and didn't think about it, I didn't have to be the one to make that decision. She was an answer to alot of prayers.

I held him for a few more minutes and just looked at my baby, crying but peaceful. I then caught a glimpse out of the side of my eye of Lesli looking at Tina, who then turned the tank slowly off and a minute later Lesli removed the tube out of Carters mouth. I have never cried harder in my whole life! We all cried, including the nurses and Alyce. I held onto Carter as tight as I could, and Mike and I kept telling him how much we loved him and how proud we were of him. I cried for a long time tonight. About 15 minutes later Wendy and Tina came in to check his heart beat, we knew that he wasn't breathing but the heart continues to beat for awhile after everything else is gone. His heart was barely going, but he was still there-although he was going really cold. I continued to hold him as tight as I could and we started taking the pictures. I was in a numbness, almost like an outer body experience, but I was so peaceful. Carter was letting me know that I would be ok, that we would be ok, that our family would be together again.

At 6:45 Dr. Jenkins came in to check again, Carter was gone-although we had already known that and the peace was comforting all of us. We continued to take pictures through all the tears and break downs, for about an hour and then Alyce said goodbye. Our families left the room so that Mike and I could have some family time, I will eternally be thankful for that time the three of us had together to talk and cry and be comforted. I am also so thankful for the husband that I have, he truly is my rock and I don't know what I would have done without him today.

I held Carter for a long time, then nurses Wendy and Dedree came in to do Carters hand and foot molds for us to keep. I then gave Carter a bath and we placed the sports outfit the NICU had let us have back on him. His little body was hard and cold at this point, all the fluid was rushing down to the lower half of his body, and the blood was starting to settle. All of these things were making him not look like our baby but he was, and he was still adorable to us! After preparing him Coltrin Mortuary was called, and again I sat there with Mike and our moms holding onto our baby, not wanting to ever let go. I told Mike and I just wanted to leave, run away, us and Carter and never come back! Although I knew this was not possible that's all I wanted, our family-the three of us-to be together forever physically here on this earth. I knew that we would all be together one day, and it is comforting to know but that still doesn't heal the pain right now.

About close to 11:00pm Doug from Coltrin mortuary came and it was time to say goodbye. We talked for a few minutes and then as much as we could all tell Doug didn't want to take our child we all knew it had to be done. I handed Carter over to him, I didn't cry the peace and numbness were to strong. I think God knew that I would need to be numb by this point or else I wouldn't have given Carter up. I was grateful. We set up a meeting for the next morning to start all the dreaded funeral arrangements-I wanted to throw up thinking about what this week would hold!
Doug left, with Carter wrapped in his arms and we all got ready to leave too. It was a weird feeling leaving the hospital that night, part of me just kept thinking that it was like any other night-Carter was in the NICU and we would be back in the morning. The other half of me knew the truth, our baby had just passed away and we weren't coming back to this place. I am so thankful to our families for dropping whatever they were doing to come and be with us during this hard time, and for both of our moms for never leaving our sides.We got home and I felt sick. The whole day had happened so slow yet so fast, and I couldn't remember what all had gone on. All I knew was that I wouldn't get to bring Carter home with me, and there was a hole in my stomach growing larger and larger by the minute.

We know that we have an angel baby in heaven. We know that if we do what we are suppose to on this earth then we will get to be with our baby once again, and that is comforting. While we prayed that night all I could think about was all the people Carter was meeting and the people that would be taking care of him for me for a while. What joy that brings. Then thanks to some medication both Mike and I were given we drifted off to a peaceful sleep.

We love you angel baby and thank you for all you have done and still do for us. Having you here, even just for 13 days has changed so many things not only in our lives but in others, and we are all truly grateful!
Miss you always and love you forever!


Brendie and Tyson Gundersen said...

Oh my word megan. I bawled the whole time while reading this. You have such a strong testimony. I am so sorry you and mike had to go through this. I do know that families are forever and you will see Carter again. You all are in our thoughts and prayers.

John & Whit said...

megan, my heart aches for you guys! Thank goodness for the gospel and the knowledge of eternal families in times like these. Your perfect angel will always be yours! Your testimony is amazing, and you are truly an example of an exceptional mother.You and mike will continue to be in my prayers.

Kristy said...

Wow!! Thank you for sharing your tender thoughts! I cried the entire time!!!! You are a very amazing girl. Please let me know if you ever need anything!!!
Love ya!

Lyner said...

You are an amazing writer. This was a great journal of your emotions and thoughts during this time. I am also grateful for the knowledge of eternal life and that families are forever! This was a wonderful testimony builder for me. Thank you so much for sharing. Love you!

Darci said...

This was so hard for me to read without getting tears in my eyes. My heart truly aches for you both. I will continue to keep you both in my prayers.

Mindee & Austin said...

I couldnt not get through this with dry eyes, I bawled through the whole thing. I wish there was something, anything I could do to help your family. Meg you are so strong, the strongest person I know or have ever known in my life!! I know i couldnt have gone through this like you have.. families are eternal, and I know without a doubt, you will see your baby boy again, and be able to raise him. You are in my prayers!

Logan & Allie said...

You and Mike are so strong. I have tears in my eyes and an ache in my heart for you both. You are constantly in my prayers. Thank you for sharing Carter's story, he has helped me remember that families will always be forever!

Hil said...

Oh Megan, reading your words brings back so many raw emotions that are all too familiar. Alyce is an amazing photographer and we were so grateful to have her take pictures of our Michael. Those pictures of your sweet Carter are ones you will cherish forever.

My thoughts and prayers have been with you over this past week. I am so sorry for the pain and heartache you are going through.

You are such a strong woman and an example to so many. Thank you for sharing your experience and testimony. I realize how emotionally draining documenting this sort of experience can be, but trust me when I say you will be so grateful you have this in the future. Not only for yourself, but for your children. Carter will always be such a special part of your sweet family.

I pray that comfort and peace will once again be in your life. Sending a big hug your way.


mary lemons said...

Sweet Megan and Mike, although heart wrenching, your honest thoughts on Carter's life have given me so much hope in and love for our Father in Heaven. Thank you! All of my love and prayers, Mary

Kristen said...

I am trying to read through wet eyes!! I think of you and pray for you often. You guys have such a great gift- the gospel and an angel watching over you constantly! I hope you know how much you are loved and thought of. You are amazing! I will also continue to have you guys in my prayers! Love you!