Saturday, September 28, 2013

Has it really been 2 weeks?

It's been two weeks since Mitchell passed away.  I have so many emotions and thoughts running through my head constantly I'm hoping by writing this down my brain can slow down for a few moments and give me some rest.  I can see my kids two other kids are changing and learning slowly as they are dealing with completely new parents.  Ones who are around more often, can spend more time with them... have such low energy they move like robots, cry so often they don't even notice half the time.

YESTERDAY.  Jake had the day off so we drove the kids to school together.  Late.  Reesa ran off to class so we walked Jansen to his class where the door was locked and the lights were off.  Another kindergarten class was walking by and the teacher told me there was an assembly and Jansen could go with her class.  So we waited to the end of the line and started walking with Jansen to the cafeteria.  Just then Reesa rounds the corner crying because obviously no one was in her class room either and she was scared. So Jake went over to her and explained there was an assembly.  I watch him take her hand and tell her he would help her find her class and away they went.  I just started crying.  I was sad Mitchell wasn't going to this assembly.  I was sad to see all these kids and know one of mine wasn't here anymore.  I was sad because the pain in my heart seemed unbearable.  Jansen of course is talking a mile a minute to all the kids in the other class while comfortably holding my hand.  He announces, "My mom is crying because she is sad that Mitchell died."  I chuckled to myself because in the previous years if I EVER cried around Jansen he would get very upset and tell me to stop crying. He has always had a very hard time seeing my emotions and being ok with them.  I was also a tiny bit amazed that Jansen had caught onto the reason for my countless tears.

Our kids were being recognized for our schools fundraiser so Jake and I stayed in the back to watch and just cried.  Several teachers came up to us including one of Mitchell's and hugged us.  Everyone is so nice.  We feel so loved to have others sharing this painful time with us, and offering support.  We snuck out as soon as we could and drove to Fresno to buy Jansen a dresser.  At the store we pointlessly walked around. Zombies.  Jake said, "so this is what it's like to exist now."  We came to the mattress section and sat down.  Probably for 45 minutes.  It was so hard to focus and try to get anything done.  It really does feel like "the blind leading the blind." How do you motivate someone else when you have nothing?  Then you finally get 2 ounces of energy to stand up, only to realize your spouse doesn't have 2 ounces to move so you sit back down.

Well we finally found the one dresser my mom had picked out 2 days before Mitchell passed away and told me to bring Jake back to see it.  Of course Jake looked at it, and said "let's get it.  Can you load it in our car?"  And we were done.  We went to Cheesecake Factory for lunch because I wanted cheesecake.  There we took turns crying in between the waitress coming and going.  It seemed like we should explain to everyone we saw we were so WEIRD because we had just lost our son.  We hardly talked, as friendly as we could be to strangers, which wasn't much.  But I was glad we were 40 minutes from home where we probably wouldn't see these people ever again.  Jake and I talked about our relationship and how hard the coming years were going to be as we were both entirely different people.  It was hard to provide the comfort to each other that in the past came so naturally as usually only one of us needed comfort and the other could provide it.  Now we are both broken, hurting and depressed. I love Jake.  He is an amazing father, husband, and person.  It's hard to see him hurting so much, but of course he is hurting.  How could he not be?  We have lost part of our meaning in life, our identify, our precious son!!!  It was so nice to have a day with Jake where we didn't have a HUGE list of things to accomplish to get done.  We even talked about how if Mitchell was alive we probably would have left him with the nanny and come to Fresno without him because he hates that drive so much...

Yep that's right.  He hired a nanny!  She worked one day before Mitchell passed away!   What timing.  We signed a year contract, so we have a nanny to help us take care of our two easiest kids.  I feel like a joke. I spent Holly's entire first day showing her how to care for Mitchell and how to meet his needs.  Her job description has drastically changed.  I guess Heavenly Father knew we needed someone to take care of us, not Mitchell. For the first week Holly fed me almost every meal.  I probably wouldn't have eaten otherwise because nothing but desserts sound good.  Holly has been great.  She is very unassuming and easy going.  She can take our kids and distract them when it gets too much for me or Jake, or if we just need sometime to cry.  Our kids love her!  She cleans our house and does the laundry and all the things I haven't even thought much about.  I'll start a load forget about it, and come back to it being done and put away.  Magic!!!  I am so grateful for her.  Honestly it would be SO HARD without her.

Last night Jake took Reesa to the ward's daddy daughter campout.  I got to have a date with Jansen, and my poor 7 month pregnant body was in no condition to leave our house.  In my attempt to be fun we had cold cereal for dinner, made popcorn and put on a movie.  Jansen told me "Don't forget the soda!"  So I let him have soda too.  I cried through most of the movie, while Jansen snuggled me.  When it was over I told him he could sleep in my bed.  He was ecstatic!  No fighting bedtime tonight.  As I tucked him in I couldn't stop crying.  It was that deep painful cry where you think your life is going to end.  It hurt so deeply and I was trying as hard as I could to suppress the tears, making them so much more painful.  I just wanted Jake to hold me and cry with me.  It was our first night apart since Mitchell left and I was aching for both of them.  Jansen wanted me to lay by him until he fell asleep, but due to the massive amount of pain I was experiencing I knew I needed to spare him. I got up to leave, and darling Jansen jumped out of bed, ran to my nightstand grabbed a box of tissues and put them next to me and said, "mom, now you don't need to walk anywhere to get some tissues!"  I was so touched.  Here was my 6 year old son telling me I would rather have you sit here and cry then leave me.  Jansen, who I told you in the past lost his temper over seeing my tears... was now asking me to stay.  I laid down next to him and tried to cry silently until he was fast asleep.

The best way to describe my tears is dramatic.  I have cried lots in my life.  I thought I knew what hurt was.  I kept thinking last night... when I was younger, I cried thinking my life would end, when I broke up with high school and college boyfriends.  That crying was very tense as it consumed my whole body.   I have matured so much since those years... But here I was again only this time I can't see how I'll ever recover.

We chose this life. We knew it would be painful.  We knew we would have to pass through sorrow in order to love and be loved.  We knew before Earth life that Mitchell would not stay with us long, but did we understand how much it would hurt to lose him unexpectedly, before we wanted?  Did we understand it would change us forever?  I have imagined losing a child, but because it wasn't real I did not feel this kind of pain...

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Toys for Jansen

Got this email from Simone and just had to share...

"Before the funeral Benson told Jansen to fill his pockets with toys to keep him entertained. So Remy and Jansen filled up every pocket in his suit even his butt pocket. He had a teacup in the his butt pocket. I was dying laughing! oh yeah that is why he had that weird one tied to his tie."

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Oh grief! Oh Mitchell!

We've had some great advice on helping us learn how to deal with the grieving process, and pain.  Cry, pray, talk, blog...  I could never do the emotions I have justice or describe the painful heartache I have from losing my precious precious baby boy.  But I think I will feel healing from the very small amount I can do.  I wish I had the energy to blog evey photo, and describe every detail that goes through my mind... but I'm too exhausted, both physically and mentally.  I want to try and post as much as I can, but know it will never be adequate or do Mitchell justice.  

Mitchell's funeral on Monday was very painful yet perfect. Family and friends did so much to help us make this a very special and commemorative day. Thank you, thank you. We were so blessed to have so many attend. All of mine and Jake's siblings, plus several spouses, and both sets of Grandparents were there to help us mourn along with so many or our dear friends. The tables, decorations, videos, photos, food, programs, cards, flowers, pictures everything.... was just right and helped us feel so comforted. The pain is very really. It doesn't seem possible to feel this much heart ache. I miss this little boy it is so hard to think about anything else. Oh what I would give to have him back..

Step one... the program.  It was so amazing in real life, with the cover tied together with a ribbon.  I absolutely loved it!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Our Angel's last day on Earth...

Yesterday we lost our precious, precious, sweet darling 4 year old baby boy! That is such a sad sentence and what's so sad it that it's our sentence. We are so over come with grief as we our mourning the loss of a best friend, son, and a brother. We thought we would share a timeline of the miraculous events that occurred yesterday. 

At 6 am Jake wakes up and finds Mitchell happy and smiling in his crib. He changed his diaper and puts Mitchell in his favorite place on earth... his swing! At 7 am Jake went in to give Mitchell his meds and thought Mitchell didn't look right. He called me in to help check him out, and when I came in, we soon became painfully aware that he had passed away. Jake frantically told me to call 911, and I could not! I just felt we could help him. I took Mitchell into the living room while Jake called 911 and checked for a pulse. His heart had stopped beating and he was gray. I laid Mitchell on the floor and started CPR. We both were screaming, crying and trying to save our little guy. The lady from 911 had to direct us every step along the way because we were so heartbroken that we had lost our son. I did rescue breaths on my precious little boy who laid perfectly still and let me. It was amazing to see it work after taking a zillion classes and practicing on so many dolls I couldn't believe I was actually doing it on my own son. Jake did compressions but was so broken up I had to help him several times. 

The paramedics arrived in what seemed like 10-20 minutes later. They took over and continued CPR while we stood back and bawled! It was horrible, scary, and frightening while all so final. I just sat there amazed by these men who were so young, and brave to not cry, show distress or ever lose hope! Jake gave him a priesthood blessing while they worked, administered epi, analyzed his heart rhythm with an AED... precious time continued to slip away. He heart never had a shock-able rhythm so they could never shock him. After another 30 minutes, right when we thought they were going to give up, they heard a faint heart sound although still no pulse. He was obviously dead and part of us thought they should have given up, although we were not ready to let him go. 

With what seemed like a formality, they loaded him up in the ambulance and whisked him, Jake and me away. They continued to do CPR for 15 more minutes and suddenly Mitchell's heart started beating all on its own! The firemen and paramedics were just as shocked as we were!!! It was a miracle, we have always known that Mitchell was a fighter, but coming back to life after an hour and a half seemed like a stretch even for him! 

At the hospital it soon became apparent that he would still die, but he came back for us to be able to say our goodbyes properly. It was a hard, sad, horrible, wonderful day. He laid there unconscious with a hundred tubes attached, but he was alive. We had the entire day to hold him, caress him, and speak softly to him and we pleaded with the Lord to help us though this horrible time. We were informed we needed to make a decision to either withdraw support, or watch his body deteriorate until it finally gave up on it's own. Neither option sounded good. But we couldn't bear to watch him suffer anymore and decided to remove life support at 4 pm. We were blessed to have very close friends and Jake's parents come to be with us and comfort us while we tried to say good-bye. They removed all the tubes, and lines and made him look beautiful and normal again so Reesa and Jansen could come in and say good-bye too. The Dr. told us she thought he would pass away in a couple of minutes, but to our amazement he held on for another hour!!! We had a very special moment with Reesa and Jansen as we held our baby and cried our good-byes to him. It was the hardest thing we had to do, but it would have been unimaginably tragic to have said good-bye that morning on our living room floor. In Mitchell's final selfless act he decided to come back and suffer a little while longer so we could say good-bye. 

We got to give Mitchell a bath, a hair cut... that I had been planning on giving him that day, and hold him for a few more hours. It felt so perfect holding that beautiful baby boy. I never wanted to leave and wailed over and over as I thought of leaving him there. Jake and Lenora had to help me over and over to finally leave, and at 9 pm we walked away from our poor baby boy alone this time. After so many happy endings at this hospital this one was unimaginable, unbelievable, and heartbreaking! 

We have appreciated everyone's thoughts, prayers, texts, and emails. We are so honored to be Mitchell's parents and will miss him forever! We will be waiting to see that precious little boy of ours. We know he is in a better place, and his suffering is finally complete. How in the world do we do the impossible? Mitchell was my life, my identity, my passion, and my baby. We are hurting and leaning on each other and dear loved ones. 

We appreciate your support and prayers and will be honoring his life and mission at a funeral service this Monday morning at 11:30 am at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Oakhurst (49969 School Rd). There will be two viewings. One Sunday night at 6 pm at the Funeral Home in Oakhurst (49629 Rd. 426) and another viewing before the funeral at 10 am at the church. We would be honored to have you there. 

Jake and Kellie

Wednesday, September 4, 2013


Yesterday, Jansen came up to me and said, "Mom I have something to say that's not for you."
OK, then he whispers to my big belly, "I love you!  You're the best! We're gonna be best friends forever!"  Finally he kisses my belly and walks away with a huge smile on his face!  It was so darn cute.  I hope they are best friends forever!