A year ago today, my baby girl went in for surgery and the surgeon came out and told me he didn't know if my little girl would make it through the night. Since that night, I have never been the same. There is not a day that goes by that I don't think about how my life could be so different right now. I know that sounds dramatic and maudlin, but it really is how I feel. I can not imagine how a parent with a child who has a terminal illness must feel. There is always a little piece of you that is afraid. Afraid that something horrible could happen to take your baby away from you. All this week I have been in a kind of funk because this is the year anniversary of all the ER and doctor visits, being admitted into the hospital, all the testing and finally, having Regan go through her first surgery and hearing such horrible news. It has been weighing heavily on my mind.
A year ago today, I was sitting in an ICU room with my baby and praying that she would make it through the night. I remember bawling and crying and trying to make sense of it all and just not comprehending how this could be happening. What helped me get through the night was a nurse, Debbie, who sat with me for 45 minutes and just talked to me. I can picture her to this day, sitting at the end of Regan's bed and listening to me try to talk through my tears and spending that time on her busy shift talking to me. My mom slept in a chair beside Regan's bed and we felt such fear and pain like we've never felt before. I prayed to God to help us get through the night and make it okay. God sent the most wonderful surgeon to us, the most wonderful set of nurses, the best pastor to help us through and I have the best, most supportive family in the world.
I was totally freaked out on Monday night when the strangest thing happened. I was in handbell practice at church and during practice Regan sits behind me in her stroller with a backpack of toys and things to keep her occupied. She started yelling and screaming and hands me a wadded up piece of paper. I open up the paper and my stomach did a flip when I read what it was. It was the copy of the hospital admittance form that I had sign to authorizing her to be admitted to the ER. This was the first ER visit that started the whole emotional ride. What freaked me out was that Monday night was exactly the one year anniversay of that visit. January 21st. Regan uses that backpack every single week and has never pulled out that paper. Why, on the year anniversary did she find that paper? I don't even remember putting that paper in the backpack, but I must have had it with me that night as we sat in the ER and I probably just shoved it in one of the pockets with all the confusion of the night. My mom told me to take it as a good sign, but it totally freaked me out inside.
Going through Regan's health scare and knowing how blessed I am that she is here with me changed me and now everytime I look at Regan I see such a miracle. I am just so blessed to have her here with me. I was sitting beside her today and she just looked up at me and her eyes were so beautiful. I am sure that for the next 21 days I will reflect on how much better this year is than the last. 21 days that last year were spent in a hospital, this year I am home with my baby and she is happy and healthy. She jumped up for the first time tonight. She has been trying to jump for several weeks now and always does that exaggerated lunge upward with a corresponding foot stomp. Today, her feet actually cleared the ground. Something so little, but it meant to much to me. Last year, I remember wondering if I would ever see her smile again and then this year, she is bopping up and down and growing, and learning new skills, and is so happy. I love her so much it hurts. Her new little thing is to call me "Beppy" and sometimes it is a clear "Becky". I'm sure it is because she hears Konnor call me Becky. She will scream "Beppy, Beppy, Becky....." over and over again and just laugh hysterically. She knows it is not quite right and she thinks she is so clever. And then tonight, I was shopping with my mom and Konnor and I got held up talking to a neighbor. She got inpatient that I wasn't with them and so she started screaming "Mommy, Mommy, Mooooommmmyyyy". When I acknowledged her she waved and laughed and had the most wonderful smile on her face. Hearing her call me mommy is a wonderful feeling, to be a mommy is wonderful. Being Regan's mommy is the best, most miraculous, amazing thing in the world.
Waiting for surgery, not aware of what is about to happen.
She looks so little.
What a difference a year makes, now she is happy, healthy, and a pip! This picture was taken today.
Regan often cracks herself up. She finds humor in the littlest things, it really is a gift! She found this pacifier today and knew she was being so funny walking around with it. She has never used a pacifier in her life and yet I had this one from the hospital when I was trying anything and everything to try to get her to comfort herself and sleep. It never was in her mouth for more than about 5 seconds. I had kept it for her to use with her baby dolls. I haven't seen it in months, but she drug it out of somewhere, today of all days. Can't you tell she knows she is being funny?!?!?