Monday, October 17, 2011

I Have A Brother In Heaven

October is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. If you are reading this blog, you know that we have two sweet angel babies in Heaven. But what many of you may not know is that losing my babies last year was not my first experience with pregnancy and infant loss.  I have a brother in Heaven also.  Today, I am sharing his story.

I am the oldest of 4 children.  Yes, 4.  I know I don't talk about them much on this blog but I have a sister, Kimberly, who is 7 years younger than me, and a brother, Carey, who is 8 years younger than me.  You're doing the math I see and realizing that's only 3.  No fear, your calculator is working.  Because what I didn't mention is that that one of my siblings is in Heaven with my angel babies.  My brother Carey is an identical twin, and his brother, Christopher Alan, was stillborn after a cord accident. 

I was 8 years old at the time but I remember the day like it was yesterday.  My father picked me up from after school care - and that was unusual because my mom usually picked me up, so right away I had a feeling something was going on.  He told me that mom was in the hospital to have the babies and that we were going up there.  I was so excited!!!  He didn't tell me until we were on the road that they had discovered today that one of the babies had passed away; my father drove a grey truck at the time and all I remember was staring at the door lock for the rest of the ride to the hospital.  I'm still not sure if I fully understood what was going on.  My brothers were born a few hours later and they let the immediate family come into the chapel so we could see Christopher.  They brought him in and - to my surprise - he looked like a normal baby, except that he was blue and purple.  It almost looked like he was wearing lipstick.  They asked me if I wanted to hold him but I was afraid to - something that I still regret to this day.  My father held him and my grandparents held him and I got to see him and we all got to say our goodbyes before they took him away.  The remainder of the week was a bit of a blur - I remember going to Mississippi with my parents to pick out a casket for him and then his funeral a few days later.  My mother put him in a cute pair of yellow duck pajamas - it was my favorite outfit that had been given to the boys before they were born.  She packed away Carey's - which I can understand because it would be too painful to let him wear it.  He was buried in a family plot in Bartlett-Ellendale Cemetery, which is near our home so we can visit him often.  My grandmother and grandfather are laid to rest right next to him.

My brothers celebrate their 23rd birthday this Wednesday - Carey here on Earth with us and Christopher in Heaven.  I know it is a bitter sweet day for my parents, and sometimes life overshadows the ones that are no longer with us - which is another reason I decided to honor his memory with my post today.  We love you Christopher and miss you :)