As I tightly cuddled Lennon and continued to marvel at his sheer perfection, my mother watched us, obviously eager to embrace her only grandchild, the grandchild that she had made so many plans for. I studied her tear-stained face and watched as a forced smile slowly crept upon her face as I slowly uttered the words “Do you want to hold him”, I didn’t need an answer. Not only did her face say it all, but she darted around the bed and held out her hands as fast as lightning. I carefully handed him over to her and I managed a small smile, as all of the love she held for him formed an unseen shroud around the two of them.
I am aware that some people who read this will ask why Lennon’s father wasn’t the second person to hold him, the reason being, he refused. During the birth he was fabulous and he did a great job of guiding me slowly through Lennon’s appearance, he even cut the umbilical cord. Afterwards though, he was completely distraught. Distraught to the point where he refused point blank to hold, or even look at Lennon. As mentioned in my previous post, shock is (sometimes) a wonderful thing and in the very beginning, it was my best friend. The fact that Lennon’s father didn’t want any interaction with him (at first), didn’t bother me as such. I knew that eventually, when we had time alone we could discuss this. Although time wasn’t on our side (Lennon’s little body wouldn’t last long) I felt as though I had this covered!
Eventually after an enormous amount of cuddles with Lennon my mother decided to leave. Before her decision, she asked Lennon’s father outside for a chat. To this very day, I have no idea what they talked about (Lennon’s father could always confide in my mother). When he came back in the room however, he couldn’t wait to cuddle Lennon. It took some doing, but we eventually got there. And the sight of the love of my life, nestled safely in the arms of his twin (they are truly identical), completed me. Although it proved to be a struggle because, once his father had gotten a hold of him, I thought I’d never get him back.
We spent the majority of that day “making memories” with Lennon, the only way we could. Although not all of it was pleasant….. I opted to have a stupidly large amount of tests taken, to try and determine a reason for Lennon’s death. I also had to discuss and plan his autopsy, a procedure that I specifically requested before I even knew if it was a possibility (given my educational background). I had only held my newborn son in my arms for a few hours, and yet here I sat whilst some consultant asked me if I wished to donate parts of him here, there and everywhere….. “It’s just a question on the form” he stated, “It’s just another dagger in my heart” I thought!
Once all of the “form filling” and tests were completed, we remained at the hospital for another couple of hours. I had made arrangements to return the next day and see my baby otherwise, I never would have left him. And as the nurse gently carried him out of the room in a moses basket, I reluctantly left. Walking out of that hospital that night was an event, that no one could have ever prepared me for. It was 9pm and it was pouring with rain, I clutched a bag containing all I was able to take home of Lennon – whilst all other new mothers had a car seat/buggy containing their very vocal, new baby. As a soaking through me, eventually reached the car park, I remember my feet grinding to a halt as I noticed the luscious green and fully decorated Christmas tree that occupied the centre of the car park. This wasn’t here before, or was it? Who am I? Where am I? How did I get here? But above all, this hit me like a ton of bricks, as I could hear the whole world mock “Merry Christmas Christie-Leigh”