Children and holding them close…

After JT passed away I was a paranoid mess. I wouldn’t let my children do much, I was scared something would happen to them. I was deathly afraid of the steps. That one always got me. I was afraid that Mikayla would fall down them and break her neck. If they were wrestling around. I would make them stop. I was just so afraid I would lose another one. I would wake up in the middle of the night and I couldn’t breathe because I thought that they were gone. I would check them numerous times during the night to make sure that I seen their chests rising. If Mikayla didn’t wake up at her usual time and slept in I was poking her to make sure she moved. I still do that sometimes but, it is few and far between now.

I wouldn’t let them go anywhere without me. And no spending the night anywhere because well things could happen. They didn’t understand it. They had no clue what was going on with me. Why, all of a sudden they were on lock down and could do nothing. I even limited their time outside. And that isn’t like me at all. I think children should be outside and playing and running and having a great time because sunshine makes you grow. I was growing my children to be couch potatos and totally didn’t like what I was seeing. But, I couldn’t let go of that anxiety and panic enough to let them go outside and just be kids. So, I let them watch as much tv as they like and play as many video games as they wanted to and just made sure that they were close. I lost myself in the computer world and they lost themselves in the electronic world. They could have their friends come over that was no problem. That never really was. I always had no less than 10 kids in my house because well, I love kids. I was feeding them and taking care of them while they were here. My husband didn’t like the grocery bills so much, but, he didn’t really ever complain to much.

But, one day I was had an epiphany. Either that or God kicked me back into shape like he likes to do. I feeling suffocated. I just told them go outside. Go play get out of here. You need to be outside. What was I thinking??? Then they went out to play and I was being a crazy lady yelling at them not to do this or do that or to leave this alone or that alone. They couldn’t have any fun that way. It took a long time of me just holding my breath praying for God to keep them safe and just letting them be. But, I did it.

I have always been the kind of parent to let my kids make mistakes. To let them learn and I help them to see what they did wrong and let them fix it if they are able to. We are very open and talk about sex, drugs, what have you. I want them to be able to come to me and ask me about something. I want them to know that I won’t judge them on it and that together we’ll look at it and find the best possible solution together. I don’t go rampaging (to much) and not let them live their life. I wasn’t that kind of parent anymore. I was a closed up piece of mess.

My husband saw it also. He said, in the most loving way, “Honey, I think you need counseling”
So, I got it.

While that may not be for some it helped me immensely. I’ll talk more about that tomorrow.

Back to our reguarly scheduled program….

Ok, back on track with the “grief series”.

The days leading up to the funeral where well, they went to fast I think. I was not ready for it to be over. Because I knew that would be the last time I would physically “see” my baby. I went shopping for some funeral clothes. The lady at the store was very accomadating and we got my clothes on sale. I think Stacy or even maybe I told her what they were for, and both of them were throwing clothes at me as fast as I could try them on. Shoe shopping was the worst. I really really don’t like shopping for myself. I have what I have and make do. I don’t see the point in spending money on myself when the kids need this or that. This was no exception. I felt guilty about it the whole time. I think that is what made it so hard to find something.

I know that everyone was pushing me to do it to get out and get my mind off of stuff, but, that really wasn’t going to happen. I just wanted to be. To just sit in my room and just be. But, that wouldn’t of been good at all, not at that time.

Those first few days, me and God had long talks. Really long talks. I told him it wasn’t fair, and he was wrong and why would he do that to JT? Why would he do that to me? Why would he take my son away from me like that? I was very selfish for a long while. I just wanted my baby back. For 8 1/2 months it was all about him. I had no direction anymore. I had nothing to do basically. I tried several times to get into the car and leave to go to Children’s only to remember that there wasn’t anything there for me anymore. Then I would try to talk myself into going up there to check and make sure he wasn’t there. Maybe it didn’t happen. Maybe he was up there waiting for me to come back. I knew he wasn’t but, my mind and my heart were playing tricks on me.

The hardest part was waking up and remembering he was gone. He wasn’t up there in the NICU and I was not going to be going to see him anymore. I missed it all. The arguing with the doctor’s the care, the kisses, the hugs, the frustration, all of it. I wanted it back and nothing I could do or say would bring him back. NOTHING.

Then I would start to feel guilty. Guilty about things that well, I had no control of. I felt guilty that he was born to early. Guilty about those first few days when I argued with the nurses and doctors not to feed him Similac. That he would probably be allergic to it like all of my other children. No one could predict what was going to happen. Guilty that my body wasn’t strong enough to keep him in there longer. Just guilty thinking that I put him through all of this. That I put my family through all of this. But, I didn’t, it happened. God has his reasons why He chose us to be his family. He chose us and that in and of itself is an honor to be the mother of him and know what he did to change my life.

I would go from angry at God to thanking him for JT’s life and all that he gave me. From crying to laughing and back again in 3.2 seconds. This would go on for a long time. Even today I still have days like that. Though they are fewer and farther in between. I welcome them. They remind me that JT was here. He was loved. He was real.

May 17th…

Dear Johnathan,

You left us for a better place a year ago today. I remember holding you and telling you I love you so much and that it was ok you could go. I wouldn’t be mad at you. I was excited for you. You would get to meet Jesus today. I told you don’t hang on don’t fight for us anymore. There is no reason to. You are tired you fought a great fight and I am proud of you.

You enriched my life far more than you will know. Because of you I met people and became friends with someone who loved you as much as I did. Who fought with you as much as I did and to this day we still love and miss you.

I miss so much about you. I sometimes wish I could just have one more moment with you. Where I could tickle your fat rolls and just stare at your face and shower you with kisses. I miss sitting with you and just laying my head on the bed and watching you sleep or the times when you would just play with my fingers. You were so amazed with fingers. After you came out of your heart catherization and I came back to see you that night. I came up to you fighting your vent and you pulled it out you wanted that no more. I can’t blame you. But, as soon as Jenny gave you her fingers you were just content as can be. She only had you that night and you played with her fingers for hours. And she enjoyed every minute of it. We just sat there all night and watched you and played with you and talked and we were just amazed as you were about your amazement with fingers.

You was a great son. You were all I ever would have wanted in a son and I got it. I was always amazed at your ability to be so calm and so content even when your body was failing you and you were going through so much. I know that was Jesus, he was walking beside you. He was holding your hand and comforting you and keeping you calm. He was tickling your fat rolls from Heaven to keep you content and happy I just know it.

You built up my faith and let me see a loving God who gently walks us through the forest who is there to lift us up when we have no strength left to do it ourselves. And believe me this last year there have been many days where I couldn’t with out his help.

When we found out that you wouldn’t make it home with us, I used to think how am I going to live with out you? I don’t think I can. God might as well take me with you because I won’t be able to live with my bubbas. My heart is still broken but, I am managing to put some of the pieces back together. I am beginning to see the blessing in my life that was all made possible because you came into my life and showed me that blessing can come in the smallest packages. It isn’t always the big things. It is the little things. Like being able to get out of bed in the morning with a smile on my face because I know in a few minutes Mikayla will be running to me telling me I awake Mommy, I love you. She has a wonderful way of making me feel so loved.

We were watching your video and she said hey that’s my Donthan. I said no, that is my Johnathan. She took my face in her hands and said NO Mommy that is Desus’s Donathan. I said you know what sweety? You my dear are right!

You my son, are in Heaven with Jesus. God gave you to me for a short while and back to Heaven you went. But, you will always be on my mind and in my heart. You are my son, you always will be but, you are Jesus’ too. I am so thankful you are being so well taken care of. I Know you are gloriously happy. Worshipping the Lord, dancing on clouds playing amongst the angels and eating chocolate pudding. Free of all the wires and procedures that you were encumbered with in this world. Oh how awesome it must be to be whole and healed like never before. I am thankful and excited for you.

So, until we meet again, my sweetness, I will be down here living, living a life that you have taught me that I need to live. No more hiding or running away from life. I will live it to the fullest because that is what you did while you were here. And I can’t see doing it any different than you did.

I love you!!!!!

Johnathan Thomas Michael Poling !!!!!!!!