“Mrs. Lassen, the umbilical cord was wrapped around your son’s ankles.” I remember breathing a sigh of relief when the Neonatologist came in the operating room and explained why my son, Tyler, was whisked away so quickly.
I immediately thought to myself that her words were a relief because it would be much worse if the cord was around his neck. What I didn’t know at that time was Tyler had become so tangled in the cord that the loop around his ankles took his life. My husband left my side in the operating room that day and watched a team of doctors and nurses try to breathe life back into our son.
In an instant my husband and I went from looking forward to the birth of our second set of twins, to trying to wrap our minds around the fact that in an instant our son was gone.
I would never teach Tyler how to walk.
I would never help Tyler pick out new shoes for his first day of school.
I would never wait in the car for Tyler to come out and tell me if his name was posted on the team roster.
I would never straighten Tyler’s tie before he walked down the aisle to meet his bride.
Several days later we were discharged from the hospital. I remember sobbing as the attendant pushed me in my wheelchair from that hospital room. Yes, I was so blessed to be taking Tyler’s twin sister, Ashley, home, but someone was missing. In that hospital room, it felt like I didn’t have to deal with the reality of what his death would mean. I didn’t have to take a twin stroller, fully assembled, back to the store and ask them to please give us a full credit. I didn’t have to pack up the stack of clothes my sweet friends gave me at a shower just weeks before.
I could hide from reality.
Many of you have been in the same situation. The pain is so great it feels as if your heart is literally breaking in half. You may have lost a child in pregnancy, as a stillborn or as a young child. The hurt is the same. I remember reading a scripture shortly after Tyler’s death that I had read hundreds of times before, but in this season the words were a bandage to my broken heart.
My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. Psalm 139:15-16
I knew that my Savior had a plan. I knew Tyler was with Him and I had a promise that one day, we would be with him again, but those words were a comfort and a reminder to this mama’s broken heart.
Today, we will celebrate Ashley’s ninth birthday. I can hardly believe it has been nine years. The events of that day are frozen in my mind. I can remember the sounds, the smells, and the words spoken as if it happened today. Those memories are a gift. Our family will head to the cemetery and put balloons and a bear out on Tyler’s grave. We will tell Ashley about the brother she never got to play with. And this mama will once again read those comforting words from Scripture.
Today, you may be grieving a loss. I want you to know that our Comforter cares about you. He has a plan and a purpose and He can turn your grieving into joy. He has done it for our family and He can do it for yours.
There is still time to make a year-end donation to The Do More Foundation. Your gift is used to help families dealing with medically needy children and to help families pay for funeral expenses after the death of a child. The Do More Foundation is a 501(c)(3) Corporation and all gifts are tax deductible. Donations must be postmarked by December 31, 2014 in order to count towards the 2014 tax year. https://www.thedomorefoundation.org/donate-now/