A Year Later…

At the time of my last post I mentioned that I still flip flop on what is important, which is still somewhat true today.  Many things that once mattered just don’t carry the same appeal any longer.  My wife’s happiness is still my number one.  I just want to make sure that I give her the support she wants and certainly deserves. 


One thing is for certain, everyone has stopped talking about Katelyn except for us.  I still feel it is only because it is a difficult conversation to initiate.  We recently had an opportunity to tell our story to a room full of medical professionals.  The hospital conducted a seminar on how to support parents experiencing a loss.  We shared points on what worked for us, what didn’t work well and recommendations to improve the patient’s experience in a loss situation.  It was a great time for us to share our daughter with them. 


As if they couldn’t see it as we walked to the front of the auditorium, my wife is very pregnant.  We’re having a boy in August and I remember saying, “…yep, we’re having a boy and I am so excited.”  No sooner did I get the words out, I felt awful and wondered how I could say such a thing.   I felt guilty for being happy over having another child especially since we were there to talk about Katelyn.


There were two points that I focused on during our talk; First, Katelyn will always be our daughter and a big part of our family.  Second, hospitals need to recognize the baby as a person.  She’s not a statistic and please don’t ever refer to the baby as ‘it’.  The baby has a name and we recommended that the doctors and nurses say it.


Now, it’s a year later and I think I can explain the ‘new normal’ we’re living.  Thursdays & Fridays are just tough days for me.  Thursday was the day we received word her little heart stopped.  Friday was the day we left the hospital without her.  I still flash back to those times.  I make an effort to visit her tree on one of the two days.  My priorities have changed and are not the same as they were last year.  Many things that use to consume my time and energy don’t even register with me anymore.  I focus primarily on things that I can control. 


As we prepare to receive our son in August, we found it to be another rush of emotions as we took Katelyn’s clothes out of her closet to make room for Blake’s.  It was another slap in the face to look at her things and know we have to put them away.