Yesterday we went back. Back to the only place Killian ever lived. The place where I spent every moment with him. The place where he lived his short life. The place where he died. Dean and I went back to Sick Kids.
We went to see the people who spent his life with him. That was Killians home. The people there knew him, held him, changed his diapers and fed him. It was a very bittersweet day. Seeing the people, seeing the hall where he lived. It was hard. It just brings all those memories and emotions back to the forefront. It reminds me, again, that my time there is done. That my baby is gone. I remember going onto that floor for the first while we were there and being scared of it. Scared of the machines, the tubes, the beds, the medical equipment. I was so anxious to be able to leave that place. To pack Killian up in his stroller and walk through those doors, and to go home. Yesterday, seeing all those things, I just wished I could be back. I wished that I was sitting in those hard, uncomfortable chairs. That I was learning medical terms and how to give needles. That I was tired from the constant buzz and busyness. I wish I was still there, because that would mean Killian was still there too.
The PACT team (what we would have previously called palliative care team) is amazing. They stay in contact with us through social media and email. Once you leave Sick Kids for the last time, they don’t wave goodbye at the door. They make an amazing effort to stay involved with the families of the children who lost their battles within those walls. Thats such a wonderful thing. We brought them some stuffy blankets to distribute to families. My mom had given Killian a beautiful blue elephant one when he was born. He had it in his bed with him every day. I don’t know what I would do without that elephant now. I haven’t washed it yet, so it still smells like the cream I put on him everyday. I sleep with it every night. Tuck it in beside my face so I can smell him. It gives me so much comfort. I feel a connection with him through this silly blue stuffed elephant. When you lose your baby, you hold on to them any possible way you can. Im so thankful to my mom for giving him that. I simply wouldn’t have thought about it when he was born. When your mind is so overwhelmed with the trauma that has hit you, that last thing crossing your mind is getting a stuffed animal. Your mind is overflowing with medical terms, fear, machines, beeps, sadness and terror. Thinking about a toy is just not on any radar. I learned the hard way how valuable those little things become. So we wanted to give them some to pass out. I hope for every single child that gets one, it becomes a nice memory for them. I hope that it goes home with them and gets packed away in a cupboard and eventually forgotten. I truely do. But if things don’t go well. If things turn out for those momma’s and daddy’s the same way our’s did, I hope it gives them something to cling to.
Walking back up to the floor Killian was on was scary. But I was greeted with hugs and smiles. One of the nurses came out and hugged me so hard and cried with me. She had been out of the country when Killian died, and actually found out through other nurses that he had. The night that Killian was born, I was stuck at Mt. Sinai to recover, so Dean went with him and slept sitting up in a chair, with his hand in Killian’s incubator. This same nurse, Kathy, covered him in a blanket and tried to keep him comfortable. Members of the team we worked with asked to come and see us, to give us hugs and see how we are. These people are the best kinds of people you’ll ever find.
We left the hospital to go have some lunch, while eating, we were talking about how much we would have loved to see the Doctor who worked on him that last day. The one who called all the shots those last 45 minutes. The one who made the final call that they couldn’t do anymore. He was the one who told us our baby was dying. He was the one who called his time of death while he was in my arms. He was phenominal. Seeing him work, we never once questioned the quality of Killian’s care. He was compassionate, kind, and the best Doctor i’ve ever seen. After lunch, we walked back into the hospital to go get our car, and there he was. Standing right in front of us was our Doctor. I’m pretty sure we both looked stunned. He came right up to us and shook our hands. He remembered everything about us. Down to the colour of my hair. This man. This ICU Doctor remembered a family who he spent an hour with, 8 weeks ago. It felt so nice to see him, to thank him again. To know that Killian is remembered by these people makes my heart so very happy.
So going back to Sick Kids was the most bittersweet moment i’ve ever experienced. I hate that we had to be there, but i’m so thankful that it’s there to help me remember my Mr. Bean