On Friday, September 25, 2009 Jason and I got up early and tried to prepare for the day. We were scheduled to be induced at 7:30a.m. I was running around the house frantically trying to get things packed in the hospital bag. Making sure I didn't forget anything. As we were getting ready to head out the door, I think my nerves got the best of me. I ran to the bathroom and got sick. After that little episode, we managed to find an empty ice cream bucket to take with us in the truck, just in case.
We made it to the hospital alright. Luckily, it is only about a 5 minute drive. We stopped at registration to get registered. The registration lady (one of who I work with now) was probably thinking we were the most nervous parents by the look on our faces. Unfortunately, I don't think she knew what was ahead for us! So she kindly registered us and sent us on our way to the elevator to the Birthing Center. On the elevator ride up to the 4th floor, a young gentlemen who worked at the hospital asked us if we were having our baby today. What were we supposed to say to that?!?! I responded quietly by stating that our little Ben had passed a few days prior. It's amazing how such a short elevator ride can leave a lasting memory.
We arrived on the 4th floor and buzzed ourselves in. The nurse kindly walked us to our delivery room and gave me instructions as to what I needed to do. After getting into the lovely hospital gown, I was then put onto the hospital bed and hooked up to all of the machines. The doctor came in shortly and began giving me the doses of medicine to start induction. This was mainly how the day went. I was visited by the doctor around the clock for more medicine and exams. The grief counselor also stopped in to give us some information on how to deal with our loss.
Some of our family also came for support that day. My mom and dad arrived early in the morning to see us, but left after a little bit to give Jason and I our time that we needed. Jason's mom also came for support that morning. For the most part of the day we were alone and were given the time we needed. Our families both knew we would keep them posted on any changes. Jason had brought me a few DVDs to watch while I was laying in bed.. the first of which was Ice Age. It was kind of chilly in the delivery room so Jason also ran out to get me some warm socks and a robe. Every once in a while I got up and walked around the hallways, only to return to our room (which was marked with a purple postcard meaning we were loss parents).
Family returned later that night. I still hadn't made much progress as far as labor went. Jason and I made company with our family and then most of them left for the evening. I believe we had a nice conversation that day about how Jason seemed to be drinking the entire hospitals' stock of coffee. How he slept that night, I don't know! It was later that evening that I started having some contractions. I had all back labor so I just felt like I had a constant backache all night long. I tried to get Jason's attention to come rub my back, but he was so peacefully sleeping on the couch I didn't want to disturb him. So I dealt with the pain and getting woke up every so often by the doctor to be examined.
Around 7:00a.m. on Saturday, the pain started getting worse so I opted to get the epidural. The anesthesiologist came in and hooked me up. Jason watched in fascination. It wasn't near as bad as I thought it would be. After the epidural, I moved back up onto the bed and we waited some more. It was a little after 8:00a.m. when I started to feel a little sick. I asked Jason to grab me the bucket from the cupboard because I wasn't feeling well. Sure enough, as soon as he got it to me it became very useful. I used the nurse call button to let them know I wasn't feeling well. The nurse and the doctor came in to check me and before I knew it, they were telling me it was time. Jason text family members to let them know as the doctor broke down the bed and prepared me for delivery. Everything happened so fast...... and then, there was Benjamin, in our arms.
Had we not known he had already passed, you wouldn't have even known. He looked so peaceful all wrapped up in his blanket with his little cap and gown. Jason and I took some time together with Ben before we let family come back to meet him. It was a very bittersweet moment. We checked his toes and fingers to see who they resembled the most. He definitely had Jason's feet and my fat fingers. He had Jason's dark hair and my little ears. Family came in shortly and all took turns holding Ben. After a while, family left so that I could rest of for the rest of the day. We chose to have Ben blessed, which took place at 3:00p.m. that Saturday. Family and friends came to be with us at this time.
After such an eventful day, the doctor came back in to check up on us. He gave me the option of going home that day or staying one more night. I opted to go home. I just wanted to be home in my own surroundings. Jason packed up all of our things and later that evening we went home. From then on out, it was now time to get our lives back to normal (as much as you possibly can).
Jason had to keep himself busy- so as soon as we got home, he was already doing a million things. One of which, was running to Taco Bell to get me some supper. Jason stayed busy for the days to follow. As for myself, I had no ambition to do anything. I stayed home, watched TV, and didn't answer my phone. Everyone grieves differently, and this is what we had to do.
The days after, soon led to the months after. Today, I look back and realized those months are what has made this last year. From here on out, it's all new beginnings! AND our first new beginning began with:
A WEEKEND GETAWAY!!
Jason and I decided to take a little time to ourselves for Ben's first birthday. We headed out of town for the weekend. We didn't really have any plans in mind, other than to get away. Once we arrived in Des Moines, we stopped at the mall to do some shopping, but ended up not getting anything. We then stopped at Arby's to get a little something to eat. After Arby's, we went and checked into our hotel room:
YES, there is an outlet on the side of the jacuzzi.... I was a little concerned, but it didn't stop me from getting in!
After we checked into our room, Jason and I decided to go to the casino. It wasn't looking very good at first. Jason was losing all his money, but that was typical :) My machine kept teasing me- first, letting me win money, then taking it all back. Jason had decided to switch machines, but I sat patiently at mine just waiting for some good luck. AND THEN... bam, I must have done something right. I cashed out my machine at $280.15- which I was super excited about considering I only put $20 in to begin with... so sure enough, I was done gambling for the day. I took my ticket and found Jason so I could go cash out. Jason suggested we 'walk around' for a little bit to kill some time. UMMM, little did he know that it's not easy to 'walk around' a casino. I ended up sticking more money into those darn machines and sure enough-- it sucked it up! It was a good time and we still ended up walking out of there with more than we went in with.
Next, we decided to stop at the Bass Pro Shop. Jason found this:
the shirt he wanted to get the last time we were there. So he bought it. I, on the other hand, bought a bag of popcorn. Yes, I bought a bag of popcorn at the Bass Pro Shop (and it was good).
We didn't do a whole lot else that day. We did a little shopping and then decided to go out for supper. We decided we were going to eat at Hu Hot Mongolian Grill. Jason typed in the address on our GPS and we went on our way- or so we thought. The GPS did NOT take us to HuHot, but to a random strip mall in the middle of nowhere. SO- we tried again. Only this time the GPS took us in circles about 4 times (I'm not exaggerating- ask Jason). For the last try, we entered a location on our GPS that was near HuHot to see if that would get us there. After 45 minutes we arrived at HuHot, only to be greeted by a full restaraunt. We gave them our name and waited to be seated. I made my way to the restroom- my bladder had went from the size of a watermelon to the size of a pea in the 45 minute drive to HuHot. We enjoyed our supper and then headed back to the hotel for a little swimming. We called it a night and went to bed.
Today, Jason and I got up and enjoyed our nice continental breakfast and then headed out for the day. Since most of the stores didn't open until 10a.m., we decided to head to the casino for one last chance at our luck... Unfortunately, our luck had run out. We left the casino and headed for a day of shopping. First, we went to Babies R Us to pick up a few things we still needed for our little man:
His coming home outfit...
AND THESE........ we didn't NEED these, but Jason wanted them.
So we picked out a few more things: diapers, wipes, safety kit, etc.. and then checked out.
We then made our way over to Old Navy so I could do some more shopping. Jason went next door to PetCo so he didn't have to wait for me to try a bajillion things on. He walked into Old Navy as I was getting ready to head to the checkout. He looked a little discouraged that I was buying A LOT of items, but after the cashier rang them up- it cost half as much as we thought it was going to... That made me feel a little better.
We drove across the road to the mall--- only to find one of these:
A parking spot just for expecting moms-- these have disappeared in Fort Dodge!!
AND it was so CONVENIENTLY located next to:
THE CHEESECAKE FACTORY!!!
As tempting as it was, I did NOT get any cheesecake!
As soon as we got into the mall we headed for Build-A-Bear Workshop. Jason and I had decided that we wanted to make Ben a special bear for his birthday. So we chose this little one:
Isn't he cute?!?!
And of course, we had to get him a friend--
So we got our little man a MONKEY! (and YES, we paid extra money to have monkey sounds put in him). Jason and I kissed our little animals' hearts and made a wish before they were sewn up!
We continued to walk around the mall to see if we could find anything else, but had no luck. We decided to grab some lunch and then head home. We took the back way home, which we have found takes less time. I sat in the passenger seat white-knuckled as usual from Jason's driving. I think he's learned to tune me out, because as I'm yelling "BRAKES" , his foot remains on the gas pedal...... I think our little man was just as scared as I was. I could feel him constantly trying to grab onto anything possible inside of my belly. Unfortunately, our uterus' is not equipped with "OH, Shit" handles... but we made it home alive.
So again, it's back to reality. Back to work tomorrow for both of us, but we had a good time away for the weekend. It was a weekend I'm sure we won't forget and the start of something special for Ben's 1st birthday and the ones to follow.
P.S.-- I'm pretty sure it's not considered a complete birthday without some cake--- so I think I'll be sending Jason out for one of these :
A Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake!!