Awhile back, after getting many questions from friends, I asked readers to send me their questions so I could put together a post answering them...here goes
How did you and Michael meet?
We were teenagers when we met. My best friend worked at Arby's so we would hang out there a lot and I finally just got a job there too. We were a very close staff. Michael worked there and we became friends. There was a group of about ten of us who would hang out together all of the time. When we got off work, we would sometimes just sit in the parking lot and chat. We all went to movies together, bowling, everything. Michael and I had been friends for awhile and all of a sudden one day,things just changed. We started dating and quickly became inseparable. Everything happened very quickly. God brought us together to spend our lives with each other and I am so thankful for that. We were married very young and we have spent our time since growing together as Christians, as parents, and just as people. I love that man so much and I thank God for giving me exactly what I needed in a husband!
Did we get to spend a lot of time with Levi holding him before he died?
Yes! On the day he died, we got to hold him for the first time. Levi was getting significantly worse and we just prayed about everything because we did not want him to suffer. We decided to hold him and see if that could help him at all. They told us that Levi was very unstable and that we should only hold him if were prepared that he might not even make it from the bed to my arms. So they handed him to me and he tolerated it. Michael and I both took turns holding him all night. We held him and loved on him and I didn't think I would ever let go. One night is not much, but we could have had only a minute or no time at all so we are extremely thankful for that special time with him.
Was Levi in pain?
No. We were very careful with Levi as pain was the last thing we wanted for him. He was not in pain as we held him and not as he left us. He seemed comforted by us holding him, actually and I truly believe he felt how much we love him. He had gotten to the point where they were definitely struggling to keep up with his pain but we hope that those who know us know that we could not and would not selfishly keep our son here in pain.
Will you have more children?
Lots of people have asked us this. We have no idea what God has in store for us. The thought of more children is overwhelming because Levi's younger sibling/s being older than him here seems so hard. Either way, our family pictures would always be missing someone and that makes my heart ache. As of right now, we are not planning on "trying" for more children. We believe that if God wants us to have more children, then He will bless us in that way. We can not say what will happen in the future because it is not up to us. We do not feel like we "have" to have more children just because Levi is no longer with us although I have heard many parents who have had children die have felt that way. If we are given more children, then we will definitely thank God and they would be such a blessing but no child could replace Levi EVER!
Are you worried that this will happen again?
Hmmm...I have always been an anxious person. With every pregnancy I have had, I have worried about each sweet baby. I worried with Caleb as a first-time mommy. Even in my last trimester with him, I had to try not to think about the things that could go wrong. Don't get me wrong, fear did not and does not control me, but I am naturally somewhat of a worrier. We are not any more worried about future pregnancies than we were with Levi's pregnancy. Before Levi, I had two miscarriages so I was a little more anxious with him than I was with Caleb. At this point, we have had some testing done to see if Levi's issues were passed to him genetically from one of us and if there is something that could have caused this or the miscarriages. There is nothing. All of the results came back normal so there is no increased risk for this happening again. Does that mean that it is impossible? No, but we should not worry because God has a plan for us. When I have worried in the past, it is just me being a little nervous before each appointment and anxiously waiting for good news. Because we know that there is no need in worrying, if God does bless us with another pregnancy sometime, we will be praying specifically that He help us with that because as humans we struggle with those things. Even though we know there is no need for the worry, we cannot always stop it from creeping in.
Are you feeling better?
No. I hate it when people ask me this question. I had people asking me this question about a month after Levi died. I am not trying to be ugly when I say this, but it is so insensitive to ask that! At least that is how it feels to us. Like you expect us to just move on with life as if he never existed. I know that most people do not mean things as we take them and yes, we may be extra emotional and sensitive (or at least me) but I do not care, to be honest. I feel like I have the right to feel however I feel and to grieve however I need to and I refuse to pretend like it is so easy because that is not the truth and no one will ever know how to approach me if I am not honest.
How is Caleb doing?
He is such a sweet boy. I don't really know how to answer this. I think he is doing about how he should be. He, like all of us, has good days and bad days. Sometimes, he gets really upset out of nowhere and other times, he is fine. I think he is doing great for a little boy who has to spend the rest of his life on Earth without his little brother.