We had a terrible tragedy yesterday.  Lu had a long, hard labor.  The child would move a bit and then stay, then move a bit more and then stay even longer.  She rode the labor like a goddess, though.  Moving, talking, shouting, many position, in and out of the tub, she did everything she should and more.

The memories of she and I in the tub during the final phase where we were both exhausted–her fatigue lightyears beyond mine–when she was pushing harder than what seemed physically possible, I will never forget it.  It was transcendent and extremely physically real in a way that I have never experienced before.  Lu is my hero.

But the shoulders were stuck.  The midwives went into emergency mode and essentially pulled the child out of Lu, but by then it was nearly too late.  He was blue when he emerged and the cord was only pulsing weekly.

All hell broke loose.  911, paramedics, the hospital, Lu on the ground sobbing, it was horrible. And it is seared into my mind forever.  I was the only one with him at the hospital while they worked on him at the trauma ward.  They got his heart beating and he started breathing, but it had been a long time.  I was so scared and just out of my mind I could barely think, but I knew I had to go to him when they offered me the chance.

He was beautiful.  Perfect and tiny, everything intact and finally there was a heart beating.  That gave me a shred of hope for one second, but it was a bare, thin thread.  I knew things were extremely serious.

Soon after, the doctors called me into a room and I said “oh FUCK” as soon as I saw what kind of rooms it was.  It was nicely appointed with pictures on the wall, and just barely bigger than a closet.  This was the place were horror lived.

The doctors told me that they had done a a variety of tests on him to see how well his brain was functioning, and the news was not good.  Terrible, in fact.  He was brain dead, they told me and that once off the ventilator he would would pass on very soon later.

They brought me to him in the NICU and I sat and held him in my arms for a while, just us.  Lu had him inside her for so many months, but this was the first time he was also mine, in my arms.  At first I didn’t want to hold him because I didn’t think I could handle it.  But quickly I realized this was so terribely important.  And I know that I will always cherish those hours with him despite the cords and beeps and horror of hosiptal.  His heart was beating, he was pink and alive, and he was in my arms.

Family and friends showed up soon after that, I had to make horrible phone calls and soon Lu arrived from her recovery in the apartment.  I told her what the doctor told me, she held him, and then she had to be taken off to be sutured from the trauma of her difficult ordeal.

Soon the entire family had arrived and we had him taken off the ventilator so he could pass quickly.  At a spur of the moment, we asked about donating his organs and it turns out that they can use the valves of his heart.  Hopefully he will help save the life of another tiny child.

Lu was admitted to the hospital and I stayed there with her.  At 3am this morning they brought him to us, once he had passed.  His name was Silas Orion Gallagher and he will be a part of us forever.

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