Gabriel has been doing so well in the NICU at Brenner’s. He is up to 4 pounds and 13 ounces! After regressing on bottle feeds a bit at Levine’s, he is back up to taking 30-40 mL by bottle! We are so proud of this sweet nugget. I spend my time visiting him just rocking him, holding him, feeding him, and soaking up each little moment. Prayers are so appreciated for his health, growth, and for any goal he needs to reach to be able to come home with us!
Healing at Home
This week has come with it’s trials, but we have been surrounded with amazing kindness, love, and support. We had no idea we had this kind of village behind us until faced with the unimaginable. We are so moved by each gesture. I keep saying this, but you just have no idea how humbled we are by the cards, gifts, meals, and messages.
Adam had to go to the urgent care on Wednesday and found out that he has shingles. This is undoubtedly from the stress of everything lately and of course losing Caleb. The body is an amazing thing, but sometimes it just can’t take those difficult moments in life. Please pray that his body heals quickly and that the pain subsides. He isn’t able to visit Gabriel with me right now because of this. Hopefully once it goes away he can resume visits!
Coming home to a nursery that was prepared for twins we extremely difficult. We spent so much time planning and working on it and making it warm and inviting for our sweet boys. I spent some time in this nursery when we got back home. I sat and cried and grieved the loss of a future with twin boys. There stood two cribs, twin themed framed signs and space for two growing boys. I knew immediately what I needed and what we needed in order to move forward as a family. I decided it would be best to move Aaron into this much bigger room and have Gabriel move to the smaller room. This was Aaron’s original nursery and it’s the perfect size for one. I don’t need a physical reminder of what could have been. We already have some extra special reminders from friends, family and Levine Children’s Hospital that are perfect for honoring his memory. This room doesn’t need to be a shrine. We will hopefully finish these rooms up this coming week and want this to be done before Gabriel gets home as well. We know that everyone grieves in different ways. This will help our family to heal.
We attend Westover Church in Greensboro and so many from the congregation have loved on us this past couple of weeks. Another amazing moment occurred earlier this week. We needed our internet wifi adjusted for Adam to start working from home again on Monday. The guy noticed we were doing things to our nursery and moving furniture. Adam explained what was going on. He then asked if we go to Westover. Adam, obviously surprised, said “Yes we do!”. He asked if we just lost a baby named Caleb! Apparently, he was reading the Westover Intercessor Prayer Guide email and saw the section that asked for prayer requests for our family. He said that he had been praying for us. It is such a small world- and God is all around.
This week we met with Barry from Cumby Family Funeral Services. I can’t say enough about the gentle kindness he showed us. As we walked into this funeral home, I couldn’t help but think about how heartbreaking it is that we have to walk into this facility to make arrangements for our baby boy. While going through paperwork, he pulled out a paper that contained the handprints and footprints of our sweet Caleb. Tears began streaming down my face. This baby LIVED. His hands and feet, though small, were not tiny. They were the size of a baby that otherwise would be here right now. With us! I keep reminding myself that he is with us. Just in a different way.
We decided to have Caleb cremated and to hold a Celebration of Life to honor his memory. We do not want to rush arrangements for this since we are in the midst of Covid 19 and right now weather is unpredictable. We also want Gabriel to be home as well. We will likely wait until March. Until then, we are making plans to celebrate his life in a small get together. Because so many have reached out to us and have prayed for sweet Caleb, we want to include anyone and everyone who would like to be included in our Celebration of Life. I thought that a nice way to do this would be to light a candle for Caleb. I have purchased red, heart-shaped tea lights. We would love to send one to anyone who would like to join us in this. These will be lit to honor his life and help provide CHD awareness. The day and time will be determined. We ask that when we light these, that you take a photo and tag us, spreading “Love and Light” for Caleb and the CHD community. Please PM me or add your info below with your address in the message section if you would like to receive a candle!