This post is bound to tug at anybody's heart strings. Mary from Building Our New Normal has quite the story:
“Congratulations” is what I wrote him in a text message early on that Sunday morning. I was congratulating him because I had just found out that in 8 months, we would be welcoming our third baby into this world! He was thrilled, he even said that his toes were doing a “happy dance” because he was cutting his hair and he couldn’t.
I was staying with my family in Indiana while he was getting ready to leave for his fourth deployment. He left in April of 2011, and time was flying by with this pregnancy. I had chosen to take a more natural path with this time and had decided on using a midwife instead of a doctor. Things were going great, the baby was right on track, and in June we found out that we were having ANOTHER baby boy! He was so proud to know that he was going to have three boys. He loved to dress them like little men, and teach them to act like gentlemen. Things were going great, until that 5:30 am phone call on August 1st, 2011.
As soon as I looked at the phone number, I knew who it was. He had been injured in Afghanistan. Hours went by with no new information. I prayed and prayed, hoping that he’d call me, or someone would call me. After all, it’s good if they call, bad if they visit, right? Right.
Wrong. About five hours after the initial shock, I received the news that the love of my life had been killed in Afghanistan. I was left with two sons, ages 2 and 4, and I was 5 months pregnant with our last. I remember being told over the phone “On behalf of the President of the United States…” I stopped the Gunnery Sergeant and told him I knew what that meant. I grasped onto the bed and cried out “Oh, God, no!” But the reality eventually set in later that day; I was now a 25-year-old widow with almost three children. My main concern was the boys, how was I going to tell them, and was the baby ok?
The day after he was killed, my friend took me to the Naval Hospital to get the baby checked. He was great, as strong as ever. Hearing that heartbeat was so amazing, I knew he was ok. Over the next 4 months, I continued care with my midwife back in Indiana, and was planning on having a home birth in my new home. I wanted a small, intimate setting, as I knew this would be an emotional delivery.
December finally came; I was due on the 6th. I was so anxious to meet baby “Q,” as his daddy called him. But, I wasn’t ready to not have him inside of me. While inside, I could feel his every movement, his every nudge and kick, even his little hiccups; they were like “I love you’s” from his daddy. He was my last link to My Love, and I wasn’t ready for it to be broken.
Little Quentin finally arrived 16 days past my due date. He was not born at home; he was born on the way to the hospital in an ambulance due to the fact that we believed he had a condition called gastroschisis. Thankfully, he was born perfectly healthy, weighing in at a whopping 9 lbs, 5 oz. The Lord knew what he was doing when I went into labor, as he was born within 2 ½ hours from my first contraction. There was not enough time to focus on the fact that My Love was not there, that he would never meet his son, and that our son would never meet his earthly father.
Quentin is now 13 months old, and every morning and every night while walking through the hallway by his room, we stop to see daddy’s picture on the wall. Quentin puts his tiny, little hand on his daddy’s face, looks him in the eyes, and leans in to give him kisses.
This is when I am reminded of what is important and life, and not to take the ones we love for granted.
Again, if you would like to follow Mary, here's her link: http://www.buildingournewnormal.com/
Thank you so much for the guest post Mary. I will never forget it!