I’m sure if you have ever read my blog then you have most likely also read Rachael’s blog. We have known each other forever and she’s actually the one who introduced me to this world of blogging. I’ve looked up to her as a mother since she had Macy and have enjoyed our friendship so much. I enjoy laughing at all her funny comments on my posts as well as while reading her entertaining spin on parenting on her blog!
Last night Zach and I had just finished up watching tv together and were getting ready for bed when I hopped on Facebook to do a quick check. I read the first update on my news-feed and it was Rachael’s status saying that her 2 1/2 month old son, Tripp, had gone to Heaven. I broke down in total shock. Zach said he has never seen me that way and that it was worse than when my own family have passed away. It is worse. So so much worse. You expect adults to die. We all know we will someday die. You don’t expect a 2 month old baby with his entire life ahead of him to suddenly be gone from this world. It’s unthinkable.
I ended up calling and waking up my mom just sobbing. I know I probably scared her but I needed to talk to another mom. As a mother myself this news hit me so much differently than it would have in the past. I can put myself in her shoes. I can’t imagine losing Kye but I can imagine how unimaginable it would be (read that twice, it does make sense I promise). I spent all night thinking about it and was unable to sleep. It was so incredible though to be online and be in contact with so many other people who were, like me, grieving for Tripp and who, also like me, couldn’t sleep due to the heaviness on their hearts. People can say all the negative things in the world about the online community but it is an awesome power and such a blessing in a time like this. For Rachael to be able to go on her blog or on Facebook and see the out-pouring of love is amazing. It gives me chills to read what people are saying and to hear of ALL the prayers being lifted up to Heaven for this family.
I wasn’t really sure what to do. I want to help so, so badly but there is no way to help in this situation. The only thing that would help would be if I could somehow go back to Tuesday and magically skip Wednesday. That’s the only thing and it’s simply impossible. I wanted to call Rachael, to tell her how much I care about her but I didn’t know if it was appropriate. I’m sure right now she’s being bombarded with people and while we’re friends, we’re about 90% online-only friends. While that friendship means a lot to me, who knows what she thinks about it ya know? Well today I actually got a text from her. I couldn’t believe that in her sorrow she thought enough of me to let me know what was going on. I obviously do mean as much to her as she does to me and I wish so badly that I lived closer so I could do something…anything. She let me know in her text that her mom and aunt were keeping the kids (Macy and Tripp) like usual. Rachael is a working mom and she’s been so blessed that her mom and aunt are able to watch her kids for her while she works. She told me that her mom went in to get Tripp from his nap and he wasn’t breathing. He was gone before she even made it to the hospital to see him.
In all her pain she has written a beautiful blog entry about this horrible experience and you can read it here. I’m so impressed with her amazing strength to do that. I know I deal with things through writing and I hope that writing that somehow brought her a little comfort, as I know it would for me. More than just her personal strength I am so in awe of her faith. Most people would blame the world. Blame God. Hate Him. But she is looking for the love in the situation. She’s looking towards the Lord instead of running away from Him. It’s an amazing blog entry and when I read it to Zach even he ended up with tears just running down his cheeks.
Waking up this morning I prayed that it hadn’t happened, that it wasn’t true. I am still in a state of shock and disbelief. I kept looking at the clock all day and thinking how this time yesterday he was okay. How, without any warning, this family has been forever altered. I have spent the day on the computer, talking on the phone, or texting others who want to reach out to Rachael. Who are praying for her. Who are hurting with her. Someone wrote that we are all in mourning together and that is so true, we are.
We all know that things like this happen. They happen all the time. Assuming it was SIDS that took sweet baby Tripps life, then he was one of almost 7,000 babies who died from it yesterday alone. We hear numbers like that and we think “how sad.” But we never think it will happen to someone real. Someone who we know. Someone who we love. We especially never think it’ll happen to us.
I am overwhelmed, like all the moms I’ve talked to, with so many emotions. I feel so so much sadness for Rachael and her family. I feel so bad for her mom and aunt, who really need our prayers, as I’m sure they feel so much guilt for a situation that was not in their control or in anyway their fault. I feel so bad for Rachael to have carried her son for 9 months inside of her. To have only given birth 10 weeks ago and to now be burying her baby. I feel so bad for Greg. Looking so forward to having a namesake (as Tripp is the third generation with the name in their family). Having a son and being so excited to teach him all about baseball and football and watch him become a man only to have him taken away. I feel so sad for Macy who will never understand any of this and will grow up always wishing she could somehow remember her brother.
I also feel so much guilt. When we were on vacation last week away from Kye it seemed like every boy I saw made me think of him. I missed him very much. When I saw baby boys I reflected on how he was at that age. When I saw boys his age I wondered what he was doing while we were gone. When I saw older boys I thought about Kye’s future and all that he will be. My heart breaks to think that Rachael will look at boys the rest of her life and think of Tripp. Of what might have been for him. I feel so guilty that my son is healthy, alive. That I will post blog entries about him and the cute things he does and that she will have to see them and think of Tripp but know that she’ll never see him again in this world. I hate that. I hate it so much and I almost feel as if I should not blog again as I don’t want to do anything to cause her more pain.
At the same time I also feel so lucky. So thankful to have Kye. I know just as much as it’ll hurt Rachael to see posts about Kye, that she would tell me (like Kelly reminded me just moments ago) that I should cherish every moment. Appreciate every second with him as we really don’t know when that last time will come. The whole situation also makes me afraid. All night last night I wanted to go into Kye’s room and just shower him with kisses. I cried over him this morning and just couldn’t stop touching him. If nothing happens to Kye..what about our next three children? How is it possible to have four 100% healthy babies. It probably isn’t. Having this happen to someone so close to me. To a baby I read about everyday and feel I know so well makes death so real. So final. So near. So frightening.
I know Tripp is with the Lord. He is in Heaven and he is blessed to never experience the sin and pain in this world. But without him here so many people who love him have to experience so much pain. So much heartache. It’s just hard to fathom finding any good in this situation. I’m trying so hard to find something positive, but what could is there? Sure, somethings about the situation could have probably been worse but it’s still the worst thing to have happen.
I am an outsider looking in and I am struggling so hard to find anything positive in this. When I read Rachael’s words on her blog about holding her baby for the last time and I read that she felt God in that moment. I read that she’s attempting to focus on the love she is feeling from so many people. I am just so inspired by her. If she can find something good to hold on to in the worst imaginable situation then she will somehow, someday, be okay. She’ll get through this. She’ll be strong. Their family will be okay and will honor Tripp’s life while raising Macy to be an amazing girl!
I have decided that I need to go to the funeral and I will be leaving tomorrow afternoon with Crissy. Ashley offered to go with me as I know I’ll be a MESS driving home and she wanted me to have company. It was so sweet of her but then Crissy said she feels her heart is telling her she should go to show support too so it works out that we can just go together. I know it’s going to be so difficult for us all but being there to honor Tripp and support Rachael is the most important thing.
I really want to help Rachael in some way and do something for her. I’d love some suggestions on anything anyone may think of that could somehow bring her comfort. More than anything I ask you all to pray for her and her family. Pray that she holds on to her strength and keeps her amazing faith. Pray that she is able to find a way to get out the hurt, anger, frustration, and pain. Pray that she can again find joy in her life. That precious Macy will help the entire family to be able to still smile. Pray that none of us will ever forget these feelings we have now. That we all will continue to hold our children a little tighter, appreciate each moment a little more. More than anything I pray that God will give her peace. For Him to provide the kind of peace that only He can give and that it will wash over all of the family during all of this time.
“I love you, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold” -Psalm 18:1-2