Sunday, January 31, 2010
I woke up this morning to my husband sleeping soundly, and oddly enough the sound of a baby crying. Imagine my surprise when my eyes adjust to the dark room around me and I see a bassinet on my side of the bed with a baby nestled snuggly in Wyatt's blanket. My first reaction was to jump out of bed in dumb founded fury at the idea of some random baby using Wyatt's blanket. How did this baby get in my room? Who had the audacity to use Wyatt's special blanket to cover this baby up? Didn't they realize this blanket would never smell like Wyatt again after this?
I immediately start unwrapping the blanket off of this mystery baby when my entire body freezes at what I'm seeing.
I saw tiny hands...
The cleft in his chin...
Bright blue eyes I imagined Wyatt would have...
Could it be? This was Wyatt... But how could that be possible? He died.
This had to be a dream, but my life has never felt so real as it did in this moment. I didn't care if it was a dream, I wanted to hold Wyatt close to me. I stare into his perfect eyes and his hands reach up towards me as to say "Pick me up mommy, I want to be close to you too".
I carefully pick him up so I won't hurt him and was surprised that his head seemed to be hard like a normal baby's head should feel. What happened to it feeling like holding a water balloon like it did when I held him at the hospital? Oh, I didn't care. I was holding my baby!
I could feel his breath on my cheek as I brought him close to my face. I start crying as I look into this beautiful baby's face, and Joseph wakes up.
"What's the matter honey?", he asks me in a sleepy but concerned tone.
"I know I'm dreaming and I don't want to wake up. I don't want Wyatt to be gone again. Please don't let me wake up!" I plead with Joseph through tears.
He looks at me puzzled. "Your not dreaming Danielle", he said slowly, "Why would Wyatt go away? He's our son. Where else would he go?"
"He died. Don't you remember? He was diagnosed with a fatal condition and died two minutes after he was born. We never brought him home alive. You brought him home after they cremated him... this isn't real."
"Honey, Wyatt didn't die." Joseph says exasperated. "You must have had a night mare. Don't you remember bringing him home from the hospital a few days ago? You have been pretty loopy from your pain meds the doctor gave you to help with the pain from your c-section... "
"So..." I stammered slowly "It was a nightmare? But how? We were just about to celebrate Wyatt's eighth month in heaven. I was pregnant again with another baby boy that we were naming Seth. He was due a month after Wyatt's 1st Birthday..."
"Danielle, I assure you that was a nightmare. Look at him... He is clearly a healthy baby. He's not going anywhere." Joseph assured me.
I look down in my arms and stare in amazement. How in the world could I have imagined such a horrible fate for my sweet baby boy? Even if it was in a nightmare. It made more sense this way. This felt real. The life I was living in my nightmare is what felt wrong. Why didn't I realize I was having a nightmare sooner?
I lay Wyatt on the bed and unwrap him down to his diaper. It was clear he suffered from a form of dwarfism, but other than that he was healthy. There was no tear on his legs from the delivery like I'd imagined in my nightmare. He was kicking his feet around and trying to climb through the air to get back into my arms. I needed no more prompting. I scooped him up tightly and held him close. He smelled like heaven. Don't you agree that's the closest scent we must have here on earth to what heaven must smell like?
Wyatt started rooting around wanting to be fed. I happily indulged. As he lay across my chest I held his tiny hand in mine and studied it carefully. I wanted to take in every bit of this amazing baby that I had missed while I was asleep and in the midst of such a dark and horrid place.
I caught Joseph studying me studiously out of the corner of my eye. I look over at him and say "This just seems to wonderful to be true." before I turn my complete attention back to Wyatt. He was done nursing and let out a huge burp! Joseph and I both laughed at the idea that such a big noise could come from such a tiny baby.
Yes, this was the way life was meant to be in our family. We did a great amount of other "normal" baby stuff with Wyatt and I thoroughly enjoyed every moment. Including one funny incident where I had to change Wyatt's diaper only for him to pass gas as I was putting some powder on his tush and a cloud of white exploded from his bottom. Joseph and I had a lot of laughs with Wyatt...
Maybe I just had that nightmare so that I would cherish my time with my kids more. There was no way I'd be forgetting that particular nightmare any time soon!
And then I woke up.
Joseph was already gone to work. It was still dark. The bassinet beside my bed was no longer there. And Wyatt was back in his urn on our dresser like he had been in my nightmare.
I had been dreaming.
I realized I had just received a glimpse of what our life would have been like had Wyatt come home with us. As beautiful and vivid and REAL as that dreamed was to me, I wish I hadn't had it. It was torture to realize my nightmare was my true reality. I started sobbing. I didn't want my dream to end. I wanted to go back to sleep and hold Wyatt close to me again... I wanted to feel his breath on my cheek... but here in my reality, all I had to hold close was a pillow. And instead of feeling the sweet warmth of Wyatt's breath on my cheek, I felt the hot sting of tears.
I really miss Wyatt today. I do everyday, but I am especially missing the life we could have had with him after having it flaunted in my face last night. I'm really at a loss for words...