I’ll never forget his face when he read “Due Date 9/9/09”
That was the beginning, it was the most exciting happy moment in our life. Both laying there in bed in amazement that we were going to be parents.
The next 2 months were filled with uneventful Dr’s appointments, telling parents and co-workers and dreaming about baby stuff. I ate, talked and breathed everything baby. I was just so darn excited. No lie.
We bought a new car, we considered it my soccer mom car! I knew I would need a bigger car and what better time to get one.
We decided on a nursery theme, even though it was kind of a given on what we would do. It was perfect and I couldn’t wait to get started.
Then May 6th happened. My follow up ultrasound showed our baby’s growth was now down to the 5th percentile and we needed to be referred to an MFM right away.
I came back, had tons of appointments, attending many more trips to L&D triage for some scares, many more ultrasounds for dopplers and fluid checks. I was placed on bed rest and was given a goal to get to 32 weeks. Nolan was measuring 3.5 weeks behind, had next to no fluid. I was drinking protein shakes and water like crazy trying to help his fluid and growth.
I did everything in my power. Everything. I fought and fought and fought.
8 hours later, my BP stopped responding to meds and my headache was back and my labs came back that I had HELLP. In order to save my life, I had to deliver our baby. I cried, I bawled, and bargained with my OB to let me wait a few more days. I knew he wasn’t ready, he was just too small. She promised me that if I did not deliver in the next few hours, I would fall deathly ill, end up in ICU and possibly lose my life.
So there I was, my world turning upside down for real this time. My best friend, Val at my bed side helping the nurses prep me for the OR while Chris was out making phone calls. All I can remember was crying, I felt helpless.
We went downstairs to my room, I fell asleep pumping and that’s when the nurse came in and told us to get to the NICU now.
The next time I saw Nolan, he had 10-12 people surrounding him, his giraffe incubator was fully open and he was coding. They had him off the vent and bagging him, doing CPR on his tiny chest. I lost it. They encouraged me to hold him while they did this, actually they insisted he be in my hands. I reached in the incubator picking him up and praying out loud.
We then had to make the difficult decision to stop the code, they had been fighting it for awhile and there was not much hope for survival and just 3 short mins later, Nolan was gone.
That’s when Valorie ran in, she opened her arms and held both Chris and I.
We lost our son, our life was immediately something we never imagined. I held my baby for the first time in my arms with no heartbeat.
For the next few hours, we held Nolan in that stupid family room that no one ever wants to be in. Only bad things happen in that room. My nurse even had to come up to give me my meds because I wasn’t ready to leave Nolan yet.
That morning, I refused to leave the hospital or have any visitors until Chris and I laid in my hospital bed and read every single post on Nolan’s blog from day 1. Then I started to write his last post. I felt I had to do it before I left the hospital, it was something I just had to do.
I had to formally say goodbye to my son the same way I started telling his story, through a blog.
We left the hospital less than an hour later, I left my innocent world behind me when I was wheeled out the hospital doors that day. Who I used to be left, and a fight for a new normal started.
The following weeks were followed with a million cards, planning our sons service and remembering what a courageous fight he had. I was so overwhelmed with how many people came to his service. Everyone even wore red and navy in honor of his favorite colors. Valorie made the most beautiful video of our Nolan’s life and there was not a dry eye in the church when it played. The last song we played was “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” and during the song, the sun shined through the stained glass windows and made a rainbow on the floor right in the front of the church. It was a miracle from above, I couldn’t make this up, everyone saw it themselves.
It seems like I could say so much more about my son’s life. I know it was short, but it just doesn’t seem right that I can write it all in one post. But here I am, trying to share with everyone my awesome, perfect and beautiful son’s life. I never want anyone to ever forget him.
I love you Nolan, always will.