By Sarah S.H. Postpichal
March 2, 2002
Dedicated to my son Weston Garret Postpichal. I will never forget the time we
shared together. I will love you until the sun turns cold and all the stars fall from
During the sonogram the nurse told my mother and I that so far everything she had seen was perfect. I watched Weston move around the screen so fast, I remember saying he had reminded me of a kick boxer. We all laughed.
Then all of a sudden the nurse got quiet. We asked her what was wrong and she said she thought there was an abnormality with his head. She said she had to check with the doctor and she’d be back soon.
For the next 30 minutes I wondered what was wrong with my baby. I thought he would have a small abnormality- one that I could deal with and learn to care for. About half an hour later she returned, along with two other doctors. They came in and began to tell my mom and me the heartbreaking news.
We both hugged each other and began to cry uncontrollably. Weston was her first grandchild and my first child- not to mention, my first son. The doctors said that I could either wait another three weeks until my due date or go ahead and induce labor later that night or when I made a decision. There was nothing else that they could do for my unborn child. His fate had already been decided.
I went home in tears, trying to comprehend what I had been told. All I could think about was never being able to watch my child grow up; or even leave the hospital. I was so confused and so angry.
I was angry with myself. Did I do something wrong to cause this? Was it because I smoked? Was I not eating right, or not exercising enough? Was I being punished? Most of all, I was angry at God. I couldn’t understand how a God of love could cause me so much pain and sadness. I thought He hated me and wanted to watch me suffer. I wondered why He could do this to a person who loved Him and believed in Him so much. I would later come to regret ever being angry with God for this.
I had decided not to put Weston, my family, or myself through anymore heartache so I went to the hospital to start inducing my labor. On the way back to the hospital, I stopped and bought Weston a little yellow baby blanket with a little ducky rattle attached to it. I wanted him always to be wrapped in the warmth of my love.
After two long painful days of being in labor, not eating, having my veins blown with each I.V. and every sample of blood, and of course, the injections of Morphine every two hours, they decided to release me. They said my contractions were not frequent enough or strong enough. I was so upset- not to mention – the pain. That night, December 28, 2001, I felt my son move for what would be the last time. He had kicked me so hard that I woke up out of a dead sleep. That last movement stays in my heart and in my soul in a way, I guess, that was his way of saying “good-bye”.
I went back to the hospital the next night knowing that there was something seriously wrong. He hadn’t moved in almost 24 hours. I was so scared for him. I was checked in again and given another sonogram, which confirmed that his tiny heart had finally given up. My biggest fear was now a harsh reality.I was told I wouldn’t leave (the hospital) until I finally delivered him. I still couldn’t really understand what was going on around me. It all seemed like a movie you’d see on Lifetime or something.
At some point in time, someone at the hospital made an anonymous phone call to Patti Lewis and Marie Hauser of Alexandra’s House and told them about what was going on with Weston and I. Patti was asked if she and Marie would come and talk with me. (Patti is the founder of AH and Marie is a volunteer) So there they were. At first, I thought they were just more people who were going to tell me how sorry they were for me, or how they understand how hard it is for me to go on. But they weren’t like that at all. Patti and Marie sat with me and listened to me ramble on and on. They comforted me when I was in pain. But most importantly, they cried with me about the heartbreaking reality of losing Weston.
It had occurred to me that God had sent them to me to help me understand that He had a very special plan for Weston, and that this wasn’t a form of punishment of any sort.
I remember resting that afternoon and Patti and Marie prayed the Rosary over Weston and me. They prayed for a safe, quick delivery, and that God would keep my son under His wing forever. I felt a great warmth come over me and a great sense of peace surround me.
I finally gave birth to Weston on Tuesday January 1, 2002 at 9:53 A.M. He was only 2 lbs., 14 oz. and was 15 1/2 inches long. When I was delivering him his shoulders got caught and out of nowhere, I sat straight up and said, “Somebody tell him he can’t spread his wings yet!” When Mom saw him, the first thing she said was, “His lips are the exact color of red roses.”
I held Weston for a long time. I told him how much I loved him and how grateful I was that I was able to be his mother.
We took pictures of Weston and me together. I held him so close to me I could barely breathe myself. I never wanted to let him go. My mom also held her grandson and kissed him and told him how much he will be both loved and missed. We both were in a monsoon of tears.
Both Patti and Marie came to see him that day. They too held and kissed that precious little angel. They brought a quilt for him to go along with the blanket I had gotten. He looked so cozy and warm, all wrapped up.
Finally, it was time for him to go. My last words to him were, “Mommie loves you, Weston. I always will. Be good for Mommie, okay? And, one more thing – thank you – .” At
the time, I wasn’t sure what made me say ‘thank you’ or why I did, but soon I’d find out. The day of Weston’s funeral was complete chaos to me. I couldn’t seem to remember where anything in our house was, and wound up almost having a nervous breakdown, because I couldn’t find my shoes. I didn’t know what to expect when we arrived at the cemetery. We only attended the funerals of adults; never kids. I almost fainted when I saw how small his casket was. The flowers on top of it were almost bigger than the casket itself (but the red roses reminded us of his sweet littIe lips.) I had to go outside. I had to breathe. This was it; the end of what I thought would be the very beginning. After everything was said and done, this would be the very last time we would physically be together.
Patti, Marie, and I all sat together right up front. Father Peter (priest advisor for Alexandra’s House ) gave a wonderful service and read the poem I had written to Weston with such feeling. It was beautiful. I knew he (Weston) was smiling down on all of us that day.
It has now been two months since I had my son and I still wake up every day, hoping this was all just a very bad dream. Then, I realize it isn’t.I am slowly learning how to deal with all of this pain I hold inside my heart. It gets a little easier every day. I know I will never get over this completely, but at least I can go on and try to be strong, for myself, for Weston.
This experience has taught me so many things. Life is so fragile and each child that is born is a miracle of God’s great work. It showed me that I can be a better sister, daughter, niece, cousin, and friend to those I love because; they could not be here one day.
I have a second chance now. This time, I am doing it for Weston. Just knowing he is watching me every day drives me to achieve the goals I have set forth for myself. Without him, my life would be a big tangled up ball of fishing wire in a tree. I hope now that Weston knew how much he meant to me and how grateful I am that I was able to be his mother for what has been, and will always be, the most important and precious eight and one half months of my life.