Friday, October 1, 2010

Two Years Ago Today - In Flashbacks

Two years ago today, the fungal infection from the chemo had spread, and you, my perfect pink little Peyton, looked bruised and battered, tired and old.

Two years ago today, Daddy held you in his arms calling you his "Little Sugie Sugie", and we joked through the tears about who had lost more hair over the previous month, Daddy to stress, or you to chemo.

Two years ago today, I saw a group of doctors in the hallway. And then your social worker Mary appeared looking concerned, and I knew bad news was to come.

Two years ago today, more white coats than I could count shuffled into your room. They told us about a plum sized mass that they found in your brain, and I wondered how that could be possible when you showed no signs outwardly.

Two years ago today, you stayed awake with us for hours, staring deeply into our eyes. This was the greatest gift you ever gave us - these moments of bonding with us one last time.

Two years ago today, I received a prayer shawl with a prayer to Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in it from my boss. The note said it was "never known to fail," and I wrapped you in the shawl, praying and rocking and crying and begging in a way that was desperate and pleading and manic all at once.

Two years ago today, the look in your eyes told us not to worry. We believed in you, our little prize fighter. That you would pull through, and be that 1%.

Two years ago today, you stared past me at the wall, to an area where a red painting from your cousin Emily was hanging just over my shoulder.

Two years ago today, the neurosurgeon told us not to worry. He assured us the mass was not affecting anything, and that in two days, on that Friday, it would be easily removed.

Two years ago today, we felt hope and promise about your infection. The surgery the day before had been successful, or so they told us. It still makes me ill knowing what chemo did to you.

Two years ago today, you tried one last time to root. And I told nurse J that you were hungry, and she in turn broke my heart. She said you didn't know what you wanted. That you were only rooting because it came naturally, and that feeding you was impossible because of the blackness that had spread to the roof of your mouth. I am so sorry baby girl. I had no idea it was to be our last chance together in this life for that.

Two years ago today, I still held out hope for your future. I continued to pump and store milk, believing my antibodies delivered through your feeding tube would help you get well and be strong.

Two years ago today, you had come through your first white blood cell transplant with flying colors. We had been up with you all night the night before, hadn't changed in days, and were exhausted.

Two years ago today, the greatest regret of my entire life. At the nurse's urging and reassurance we left you at the hospital around 10PM, to rest up for the two long days of surgery you had scheduled ahead.

Two years ago today, your favorite Nurse Katie and the doctor on call spent all night with you having a "girl's party." I learned about this weeks later, in a handwritten Papyrus condolence card.

Two years ago today, your last night on earth before dying. I had no idea what I would have to do the next day, or how even years later, I would still be struggling to live with it.

Two years ago today, I didn't know yet what it was to hold my dead child. I didn't know how small you would look in your casket, or how permanent your absence from our lives would be.

Two years ago today, we listened to John Legend on the ride home. He asked "where did my baby go," the cruelness of this foreshadow still unknown to us.

Two years ago today, I wasn't that woman who cries out for you on a hilltop. I had never clutched the earth wanting to dig and get my child back, or cursed God for what he had done.

Two years ago today, I went home to rest still believing - that God and prayers and miracles could save you, holding onto my last bit of innocence.

Two years ago today, I still roamed this earth complete. I have since learned to walk on once again, but it is with the limp and struggle of an amputee, adjusting to a new awkward stride while never again feeling fully whole.

Someday it will be five years, and ten, and then fifty, and even then every moment of your life, every decision, every everything, will remain as clear in my mind, as burned into the core of my being, as it was when it happened two years ago. 

I miss you baby girl. I am so sorry I didn't see it coming. If I could go back I wouldn't have put you down for even a second.

If I had just seen what was coming, two years ago today.


  1. I can't even begin to imagine how hard today is for you. Every day is hard but I am sure today is especially hard. Please know I am praying for you and feel so blessed to have gotten to know baby Peyton thru your journey.

  2. So sorry.... these dates hit hard and suck!! My 2 years ago today will be in just 3 short days... I wish I could take away your pain!! Sweet Peyton is amazing and beautiful. Sending much love!

  3. What a beautiful, hard post. Time is so cruel and yet kind to remind us...

  4. What a beautiful heart wrenching post. Your in my prayers.

  5. Sending up extra prayers for you today.

  6. Oh I can't stop crying. I honestly do not have any words that could possibly make what you are feeling any better. I am so sorry my friend that sweet Peyton isn't here and that she went through so much in her short little life. You have no idea how much you both have impacted my life. Love ya both, ((HUGS)). As always thinking of you and sending prayers to you.

  7. so beautiful....

    i have those regrets too. like why didn't i spend every waking moment in the NICU? why did i leave?

    thinking of you today and your sweet little peyton.

  8. Wanting to go back and do it all over....knowing how little time would be had. It breaks my heart...I think of you every day....every day.

    I'm so sorry she isn't sitting near your growing belly patting the little sister and brother than are on their way with a smile. It should have been that way.

    Sending you love.

  9. I'm so sorry Kristin. You could never, ever have seen what was coming. I was holding out for being in that 1% too. Because the alternative was too unbearable. And yet, here we are.
    Thinking of you and your beautiful Peyton. I'm so glad you have those special moments together, I just you could have had longer in each other's company. xo

  10. I am crying after reading your post. I lost my son Bryan 8 years ago and when I read your blog I feel like someone actually understands me because I feel exactly the same way you feel. It seems like each year just gets harder instead of easier. You miss more and more what could of been. Thank you for this blog, you are just a wonderful person keep on praying for you and your babies. :( Blanca from Columbus Ohio

  11. Kristin--I don't have any words and even if I did, I couldn't type them through my tears. I'm so, so sorry...touched by your precious little girl's life, and and praying for your heart today and in the days and years to come.

  12. thinking of you and your baby girl.

  13. I am crying as I read this. I understand some of those same regrets and struggle with some of those feelings everyday. I wish I could go back and change the last hours of my daughter's life too. I didn't realize that she was about to pass and had finally tried to get some rest right before she passed. My mom held her the last hour...I would give anthing to go back and hold her that hour. Huge hugs to you. I am praying for you.

  14. I pray for peace for you and your hubby today....very heartbreaking....:(

  15. *tears*

    She's so beautiful. I'm so sorry.

  16. Prayers and hugs. Today and everyday. You were a perfect Mommy for Peyton, if not, you would have never been given to her.

  17. my heart to yours. it was your job to hope for her, to believe absolutely in a future for her. as her mommy, in that moment, that was your job and you did it so well. sending love. xo

  18. My heart breaks with yours. my prayers out to you...

  19. This is one of the most heartbreaking things I have ever read. I often look back and think "if I only knew then what I know now." I don't even know how I stumbled on your blog, but I'm glad I did and I pray for your little snowflakes.

  20. So beautifully written. You have honoured your daughter today. I am so sorry about your precious girl xx

  21. Tears stream down my face. I am so sorry. I am still thinking of you and always thinking of Peyton.

  22. This is so heartbreaking. Your story & Peyton's story is the worst of what can happen. Babies shouldn't be born into this life with Cancer.

    I'm so sorry.
    It's a beautiful tribute you wrote.

  23. tearing and sending hugs and hugs and hugs ...

  24. I'm so sorry that Peyton isn't where she should be Kristin.



  25. Kristin, Peyton is never far from our thoughts here. We have the card with her beautiful photo on sitting on our mantlepiece.
    Sending you love.x

  26. Praying for you...with an aching heart...

    Just no words for this agony of missing...

    Love to you...

  27. I am so sorry. Sending much love. xx

  28. This post is so heart-wrenching, Kristin. I look at the pictures you have of sweet Peyton, at how beautiful she is, and my heart just breaks.

    I'm thinking of her, of you, and your husband...

    ((Big Hugs))

  29. i dont know why tragic things happen to good people. i wish you never had to go through the pain of loosing your beautiful little girl.
    thank you for sharing this beautiful tribute you wrote to Peyton....
    i remember a post a while ago you wrote about letting ballons go with a friend...and there were 2 clouds one with your daughters face, and one with your friends childs posted the photo. reading this tribute, reminded me of that post.

  30. I miss your baby girl and I never even met her. Your words are beautiful, I am so sorry for your loss and your pain. Sending you prayers for strength.

  31. My heart is breaking for you and your little girl. Thank you for sharing so many personal, sensitive moments. I have felt the urge to dig too, to hold them just once more...
    I'm so sorry that you have to hurt so much.

  32. Your story rips my heart into little, tiny pieces. It is just so horrible. So terribly unfair that she's not here. She is so, so beautiful. Missing her with you.

  33. Sending you lots of love today, missing your beautiful daughter with you.

  34. This shouldn't happen to anyone. I'm sorry... it's so wrong and unfair. What a beautiful baby. xo

  35. Kristin - My heart is broken for you and your husband. Your post was beautiful and heartwreching and I can't imagine the pain that you go through everyday. Please know that Peyton and your family have touched so many people and so many of us will be thinking of you all today. Please know that so many of us are crying so many tears for you today. I'm so sorry for your loss, today and everyday. - Amanda

  36. I have been thinking alot about you and Peyton... You're right, I think the details will always be as clear as the day they happened. I've held onto every detail of my memories and replay them in my mind many times each day. So much of what you wrote is so painfully familiar to me. I can't believe it's been two years for you, and two years is just around the corner for us. I struggle to make sense of how this much time has passed when I still feel like part of me is frozen in time, hanging desperately onto those few days that our daughter breathed the same air as us. Lots of love to you.

  37. Peyton sounds like she was a most wonderful little girl, with that beautiful gaze at her momma that I see in the photo and can imagine in my mind.
    Heartbreaking post.

  38. I'm sorry. A thousand times I am sorry.
    Love to you.

  39. Hugs. So much of what you have written is so painfully familiar to me... I too wish I had hugged more and spent every moment in the ICU with my daughter...
    ..know that she is there listening, she knows your love and she loves you very much too.

  40. I'm heart breaks over and over. I'm so sorry.

    Amelia just spent a couple minutes talking to Peyton's picture. She likes to talk to Peyton. Not any other baby, just Peyton. I'm not sure why.