Friday, February 1, 2008

A new month, a new journey

Today is the 1st day of February. It's a new day, a new month, a new beginning and a new journey. This new journey will certainly be different than one we've ever traveled before as I have never suffered the loss of a baby. I have also learned that you can never be prepared, just as we are each different individuals we each grieve differently. All 3 of my sweet "Internet" friends lost their precious babies before me. I would read their entries trying to understand what the grieving process would be like to prepare my heart for the inevitable. I now know that it is in no way the same as my friends. Although our pregnancy journeys were the same because our precious babies were diagnosed with T-18, our grieving is totally different. I did not realize I could love my precious little boy so much, become so attached and miss him as much as I do after sharing a mere 56 days. He impacted our lives in such an unbelievable way, one that is truly unexplainable. We were touched in a way that has forever changed us.

We've been so busy since Tristan passed away Sunday night so I really didn't feel the loss until yesterday morning! There was such a difference about the house, it was so quiet without the oxygen concentrator and there was such an emptiness without Tristan here. How is it that EVERYTHING in our home reminds me of Tristan? From our night stand light that we kept on all night long (I never did have enough faith to turn it off - now I'm so glad I didn't, I was able to see him all night), the area beside our baby where his bassinet once was, the counter top in the bathroom where we had all of his feeding tube supplies, the Dreft detergent (I never realized how much that little baby looked like Tristan - his fist are even clenched), drawers of preemie clothes, tiny diapers, cabinets of formula, cabinets filled with feeding tubes and oxygen tubes, the shelf in the refrigerator where his feeding IV bags were, the oxygen concentrator, the oxygen tanks, the car seat, the list goes on and on. I was fixing dinner tonight (facing the opposite direction from the TV) and I heard a beeping noise. I stopped and literally turned around to run up the stairs and then realized.......it was the TV....... not Tristan's apnea monitor, my heart just sank. I fought back the tears and didn't say anything to Trayc because Tanner was right there but later I mentioned it to him and he said, "Oh I know, I heard it - it's the same sound you hear when a construction truck backs up too!" I have to keep reminding myself that I'm ONLY on day 6 so this is all normal, I'm sure. The pain is so real right now, I'm ready for it to subside so that I can think of the 56 days we had with excitement instead of being so sad.

I know that for me the best thing is to stay busy and fortunately I have Tanner and Tayden with me all day to help with that. I sat down tonight and made a list of upcoming things for me to start focusing on. I'm better when I get up and get going and have a plan - I'm a planner. So, I got out the calendar and scheduled everything for the rest of the year. I usually do this the day I buy a new calendar however I did not do it when I bought the 2008 calendar because of all the uncertainties with Tristan and not knowing what the year would bring. When Tristan was here I would wake up every day and write what day we were on so I would never have to use white out if he didn't make it to the next day - we lived in the moment and lived for the day only! Now, in order to keep my mind consumed I need to get focused on the rest of the year. We have church, soccer, piano, vacation, Easter, Tayden's birthday, Tanner's birthday, etc. Oh, and of course add home-schooling Tanner to that.

Honestly, overall I really feel great and am surprised at how good I feel during the day, however, the night time is a different story. As the sun starts setting and the darkness appears that's when my emotional sadness and struggles begin. Tristan had his days and nights mixed up so he'd slept all day long so I really only feed him and changed him during the day but as soon as Trayc would come home around 5:00 pm Tristan would wake up, look around, move his sweet lips and try to talk to us and he would be alert the entire night so we'd hold him and love him and smoother him with kisses at night and then I spent my nights either holding him or leaning halfway into his bassinet. This is why the night time is extremely hard. I've laid in Trayc's arms for the past 4 nights crying myself to sleep because I feel so sad and so alone, I miss my little boy so much and I just want one more night to hold him, to rub his little face, to pray with him and to sing "Jesus Loves Me" to him - just one more night! Of course, Trayc feels the loss too but in so many different ways. His heart breaks when he turns on the water in the kitchen because he feels like he should be cleaning out/making more IV feeding bags and he struggles with not being able to feed Tristan every 3 hours. Our bodies are set to wake up and feed Tristan and that has not changed yet, so the loss is felt over and over and over.

Tanner is doing really well! We are so proud of him. Of course it was so emotional for him as Tristan was passing away and he was talking to him but we've all been so open with each other and sharing our feelings so we're all working through it together. He was so excited to go to church Tuesday night, there was a special rehearsal for the upcoming Pastor's Conference so my step-dad took him. He was able to see all of his friends, he loves going to church so it's been hard for him to miss the last 8 Sundays and Wednesdays but he understood why we weren't able to go.

The Lord is continuing to carry our family just as he did throughout our pregnancy. He is continuing to bless us with sweet family and friends to love and support us as we begin this new journey.

I would ask that you please continue to keep our family in your prayers in the days ahead as we deal with the loss of Tristan and begin our lives again and please pray specifically for me that I will work through the pain, the loss and the emotions I feel so much during the night hours.

38 comments:

Anonymous said...

As I was reading the part about how you are mourning not having him in the evenings, to pray with him and sing Jesus Loves Me, I had a really strong mental image suddenly of Tristan sitting on Jesus's lap, with Jesus singing the song to him, holding him close. It was a powerful vision and I won't forget it.

You are covered in prayers everyday. The past week or so I have been waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to sleep, and I have used that time to lift you up to the Throne.

You are loved and Tristan will not be forgotten.

A sis in Jesus from Seattle,
Kimberly

Kim (marygracesummons.blogspot.com) said...

Sweet Yvette,
It's another reminder to me, no matter how much or little time with our babies - it's never enough, it's never what we would plan or how we would do it. I am not sure about most of the "why's?" but I know one thing for sure....I would not trade knowing you and Tristan for anything.
Praying for you and loving you still.....
Kim

Collins Family said...

We will continue to pray for you all and all the families who have suffered losses of their babies the past few months as well. Yvette it will take time, time will help heal your pain and help you to focus on the wonderful memories you have with Tristan. I suffered 2 pregnancy losses although very different because I never held or saw my 2 babies I do know that it took time, that was not always good because it seemed to take forever and creep by but time did help heal that wound. No I will never forget the dreams and hopes I had for those 2 babies but I just know that was God's plan for me to maybe make me stronger and in his plan he had may Isabelle Grace for me and I know that whatever I had to go through or any of us have to go through is part of his plan even though we do not know what that will be. I say all that just to let you know to take the time to grieve and in time your wound will heal, you will never forget but that wound will heal to where maybe it is a bit more bearable to deal with everyday. Sending much love from Kentucky to you and your family.

Stacey said...

My heart hurts for yours. Our son passed away at 8 months old almost 8 years ago and I still find myself looking for him occasionally when I count noses or look around the dinner table.

Laurie said...

Yvette,

My heart hurts for the pain you are going through. It must feel so empty after caring for him. In the beginning of his journey at home, you had mentioned that you did not want to hold back loving Tristan in fear of having to let go. As I read each days new update, I knew you were falling in love with him more and more. Part of what hurts so much now, and I am so sorry. I know when the joy of the memories outweighs the pain of loss, you will be so blessed to know how much you fell in love with him and know he felt it every minute. It is perfect. I read this and wanted to share it with you:
"In the quiet moments when the hurt is hard to bear, may love become your shelter and the beauty of precious memories be your comfort. You are held in gentle thought and prayer."
I will pray for you every sunset and lift your family to Him,

Love, Laurie in Ca.

Anonymous said...

I'm reminded of something Angie Luce wrote in her blog one day...her Papa used to say, "Do not doubt in the darkness what God has shown you in the light.” That has ministered to me since the day I read it and I pray that it will be on your heart to help you during this time.

Annie- Nashville- TN said...

Sweet Yvette. You are in my prayers daily. I know that God will carry you through. Much love to you.

The McCunes said...

In the dark moments of your days I pray God will reveal the reality of Isaiah 45:3 to your heart...

I will give you the treasures of darkness, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the LORD, the God of Israel, who summons you by name.

We are still praying for you often!
Jamye

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to give you a big HUG!

Shane and Devin said...

Yvette,

I can completely relate to the night times being the hardest. When we lost our baby, I did fine (for the most part) during the day, as long as I kept busy...you know, I could keep my mind off the reality that was surrounding me. But when the night came and it was totally quiet in bed, it was....well, it was a completely different story, to say the very least.

I want to encourage you that time does help ease the sting. I differ with others who say 'the pain eases with time'. For me, the pain is still as real as it was when our baby died, but the sting of it all isn't as strong anymore. I hope this is making sense; I hope that you can make something of that.

A song chorus that I cling to is one by Ron Hamilton and it goes like this:
God is good
Thru every trial and test
God is good
and I know His way is best
Even when I can not see
the purpose of His plan
Still I understand
God is good

He is good, loving, and wants only the best for us--that is true, no matter the circumstances. That also gets easier to remember each and every day that passes.

Continuing to pray for you each and every day,
Devin in Illinois

Anonymous said...

We are still praying for healing for your sweet family. You have blessed so many lives by sharing your story & letting us all have a glimpse into your private journey. Thank you for sharing.
Emily

Rebecca said...

Big hugs and prayers...

Rebecca

Christena said...

Dearest Yvette,

You are remarkable and wonderful. I know how difficult it is to start a new journey that doesn't physically include Tristan. Of course he will be an integral part of your heart's journey through life, but kick starting the day to day right now must be just like going through the motions.

All I can say is that the nights will slowly get easier. Maybe you'll cry yourself to sleep for weeks and then one morning you'll realize that you fell asleep without crying the night before.

I know that the purpose of your journal has now shifted, but I do hope that you continue sharing for a while. It's not a journey any of us would pick, but an unfortunate 1 in 3000 a year are given the journey of Trisomy 18. You have shared every step of your journey; the shock, the doubts, the fears, the sorrows, the joys, the miracles and now the grief. Through all of it, your faith, your love and your humanity have shone through as an example of what is possible. Your link on the legacy pages of the Trisomy 18 Foundation site has led and will lead other mothers to this blog. With your words, you have painted a beautiful legacy for your darling son which will endure and help others.

My prayers for you will continue on and on and on...

Love,
Christena

Alison said...

Praying for you and your family. I could not imagine the strength that you have. Tristan was a sweet little angel, one that touched many lives.

I am so sorry for your sadness and feeling of loss.
Praying for you and your family,
Alie in TN

Anonymous said...

Lifting you up in prayer.

Anonymous said...

The nights are always the worst. It seems that darkness and quiet make our hearts/minds become unsettled. Find some verses that really calm you and recite them during that time. Remember it is okay to grieve and feel what you are feeling. You will always miss him ~ you will learn how to make it through the days without him. He has forever changed your life. Embrace this chapter in your life ~ there are so many people praying for you. I am one of them!

Emily said...

I'll pray you through tonight, sweet friend....

Patty said...

Still sending prayers and positive thoughts your way.

Cathy said...

Praying for you that when you see these precious reminders of Tristan that the pain will subside and you will be filled with the gentle sweet, sweet memories of your precious Angel. Praying for your entire family.
Cathy and Annabel

Jen in Al said...

My heart is breaking for you! thank you for sharing where you are on your journey. The Lord is with you through every moment. i will continue to pray that you feel His presence every moment as well as for all your requests. it is truly an honor to pray for you. you all are so loved! tristan and your family are a part of my life. Precious Tristan touched so many and is continuing to touch lives. How amazing that God is using a sweet baby boy to show Christ to the world! praying every day, jen in al

Anonymous said...

Those of us who watched you from afar never doubted that you would, given the chance, relish every moment of your time with Tristan. And we also knew that although his stay in your home was all too brief for you that he went to his destiny knowing he was deeply cherished. If only all children were loved this much...
He was a gift of God and you made every moment of his life a celebration.

Laurie said...

Thinking about all of you today and praying for you.

Love and Hugs,
Laurie in Ca.

Christy said...

Praying for your precious mommy heart to find comfort and as much healing as possible, so that you are able to sleep through the night. Praying for your husband, as well, as he also struggles to find comfort in his own way. Blessings to your family.

Anonymous said...

Dear Yvette and family,
My heart breaks for you and your family. I check your blog every day, and feel as if I know you. Your children are beautiful and are so blessed to have you as their mommy. Lots of prayers and hugs go out to all of you.

Kim (marygracesummons.blogspot.com) said...

There is not a day that goes by that I do not think of you and Tristan...but today I wanted to make sure you knew that.
Love you,
Kim

Vicky said...

You know Yvette, as I was reading your heart on the pages of your blog I was reminded of losing my Mom. Oh, to be sure, it's very different than losing a child, but grief is grief. I remember how much it hurt so bad in the beginning...all of the little things, but today as I look back and think about those little things that were so painful then...they are today sweet precious memories. My Mom came to visit us for a couple of weeks right before we found out she was sick. Everywhere I looked for months after she died reminded me of her...it was so hard THEN. But now...I'll never get over her loss, but the CONSTANT PAIN goes away and is replaced with a peace and comfort of knowing that there is no more pain or suffering in glory for her. It's hard for us because we want their presence...

Just know that it's OK to hurt. And it's OK to feel the pain. Talking it about it will help. Like I said, I've never lost a child, but I'm here if you just need someone to hold your hand and let you cry and talk about your sweet son.

Vicky Anderson

Julie said...

Thank you so much for continuing to write about your family. You all are precious to us though we have never met.

I too know about the silence of the machines and that darn "beep". It is also the same beep that you'll hear at fast food restaurants when the fries are done. Be prepared. I only know because of losing my nephew who was medically fragile and passed away when he was two weeks past his fifth birthday. As painful as it was and still is I know it's only a fraction of what you guys (and my sister's family) feel after losing a son.

After my nephew was born I would rock him in the rocking chair and sing "Jesus Loves YOU" (I would change it) and pray that some miracle of healing would occur in the singing of it. I suppose it does in that I know my nephew is no longer bound by the limitations of his ailing body but is perfect and in the arms of Jesus.

Peace to you!

Anonymous said...

Dear Hostetter family,

I have been following your blog and thinking about your family a lot. I will continue to pray for you in this difficult time.

I came across this song, and thought it might be of some comfort to you. It is called "Godspeed (Sweet Dreams)" by the Dixie Chicks.

"Godspeed (Sweet Dreams)"

Dragon tales and the "water is wide"
Pirate's sail and lost boys fly
Fish bite moonbeams every night
And I love you

Godspeed, little man
Sweet dreams, little man
Oh my love will fly to you each night on angels wings
Godspeed
Sweet dreams

The rocket racer's all tuckered out
Superman's in pajamas on the couch
Goodnight moon, will find the mouse
And I love you

Godspeed, little man
Sweet dreams, little man
Oh my love will fly to you each night on angels wings
Godspeed
Sweet dreams

God bless mommy and match box cars
God bless dad and thanks for the stars
God hears "Amen," wherever we are
And I love you

Godspeed, little man
Sweet dreams, little man
Oh my love will fly to you each night on angels wings
Godspeed
Godspeed
Godspeed
Sweet dreams

May God watch over your family.

KK Edgil-Hargett said...

I am praying for your family. There is a sermon that Rick Burgess just preached at his son Bronner's Memorial Service and it is at www.rickandbubba.com and I think that you might find it helpful. May God Bless you and your family.....

Laurie said...

Praying for you and your family this morning and all through the day. Asking God to help your hearts heal, a piece at a time, and to pour out His love and peace all over you.

Much Love, Laurie in Ca.

Anonymous said...

A little over a year ago, my daughter Hayden Grace passed away. She was terminally ill and such a sweetie. I can still see the lines in the carpet where the oxygen compressor was and those sounds. I find peace in knowing that she is not sick anymore. The night times are still hard for me. I just wanted to let you know that you are not alone. Shannon www.thecraverfamily.blogspot.com

Kenzie Stanfield said...

Yvette-

I have no words of wisdom... only love and prayers right now. As we each work through this time of loss and pain, all different, and yet all similar, I just want to tell you that I love you and your family so much! You have been a tremendous blessing to me and it is wonderful to know our boys are together.

I love you...
Kenzie

Christena said...

Dear Yvette,

I so wish that I had some magic dust that could alleviate the emptiness and sadness. My heart hurts for you. The prayers won't stop, so please, please take good care of your aching heart.

Love,
Christena

Renee' for The Van Clan said...

I am not sure if I ever commented before, but I have been reading for several weeks. I cried many tears as I read about your pain. I was thinking how if I, a stranger, can ache with you, how our Heavenly Father must ache right now knowing how much you hurt. And yet I am so glad that He sees the entire picture and knows that one day soon He will give you beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, and a garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness! God bless you all.

Laurie said...

Hi Yvette and Trayc,

I want to let you know you are in my thoughts and prayers this weekend. I am asking the Lord to hold all of you gently and lovingly as you travel this new road of missing Tristan. I can only imagine how hard it must be to not have him there to care for and to hold and love on. I miss him too through your updates. I will continue to pray for all of you.

Love, Laurie in Ca.

Pat said...

Just dropped by to let you know I am thinking and praying for you and your family as are others at my church.

Anonymous said...

I actually think that the grief of your friends whose babies never came home can be very similar to what you are feeling now - and in some ways even worse. We ache for the minutes, hours, days, and weeks that we would have given anything to have with our babies. It is different, I guess, but so very much the same and very much just as intense. I delivered my still-born daughter (who had Trisomy 18) over 4 years ago, and I am still grieving deeply. I envy your pictures, videos, and memories more than I can even say.

Praying that you will find peace,
Another mommy with a baby in heaven

The Phillips Family said...

I have read this post over and over again and still I am in shock. I don't know you and never will, but followed you from day one via Poppy Joy. I know you have felt the amount of prayers and love that have surrounded you throughout this journey and know that part of them came from me. Especially the day of his memorial as I fixed myself lunch. I stood in my kitchen and wept for you. I keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

In Christ's love
Renee in Lexington, KY