The baby was not dead, there was a heartbeat. What next?
Where was the doctor? He was called at the time the hospital was notified, but he wasn’t there. It was Saturday night and he was a race car driver and getting ready for the stock car races at the local track. Very soon after the nurse found the heart beat and he appeared and quickly took charge.
He reassuring the couple and told them they were truly going to be welcoming their baby into this world tonight. The doctor consulted with the nurse to get the rundown on all that had transpired sense entering the ER. It was determined an emergency delivery was needed and the baby would come by cesarean delivery.
Medicine and white clothes being draped to block the view of the fast approaching delivery process began. Her husband was at her side. Everyone was gowned up, the procedure began.
Tears began streaming from her eyes again as she was having a hard time staying in the present moment. Feeling no pain from where the incision was made yet being told each step of the way what was happening. All she wanted to hear was the baby was alive!
At 6:34 p.m. the loudest scream was heard along with joyful congratulations from doctor and nurses. A baby boy! Her tears of sadness turned quickly to tears of joy. The baby was very much alive and was screaming like crazy. He had a full head full of black hair but was very small, 4 lbs. 5.5 oz.
Nurses quickly took him away, the doctor finished stitching her up and her husband was asked to come with the nurses. Minutes later after the baby was being examined and observed it was determined that he was not breathing very well because of his underdeveloped lungs. He would need to be taken care of by a bigger more equipped hospital for preemie babies.
The doctor was asking the couple where they preferred the baby to go – Bismarck or Minot. Minot was the choice. Trinity’s air ambulance was notified and would be arriving within a short time.
So many questions were being asked of both the mom and dad – what was their son’s name – Phillip James. What was the mom and dad’s full names, address, dates of birth? It seemed to go on and on and all she wanted to do is see and hold her baby. She only seen a glimpse of him when he was screaming and no one had brought him to her since. More questions – who would be flying with the baby and who would be staying with the mom? So many questions, and no really good answers.
Mom was put in a room with nurses and doctor coming in and out asking more questions, giving the status of Phillip and the estimated arrival of the air ambulance from Trinity Medical Center in Minot, ND. The time felt like eternity and it all seemed like it was make believe. Maybe she would just wake up from this horrible dream.
Again, she began to feel this out of body experience and was beginning to have no emotion because the reality was so scary. She had not seen her new baby boy Phillip for several hours. Worry was beginning to take over her thoughts when all of sudden the doors of her room opened. In came so many people – more nurses, doctors and a gurney with an incubator on it and her baby boy, Phillip!
It had been determined that her husband was staying with her to bring her back to Minot in a day or two to drive their pickup back. The motorcycle would be trailered back by their friends. Her mom would meet the air ambulance in Minot so there would be family with Phillip in case he did not make it through the night and went to be with Jesus.
All the people in the room and this baby inside this plastic incubator laying on his stomach and they are saying you can spend just a few minutes with him, we need to go. They all left the room-for the first time mom and dad were alone with their son. They looked at each other with tears in their eyes, not knowing what to do or say. She wanted so desperately to hold Phillip, she hadn’t even touched him yet. This was not how the ending of the story was supposed to go. She held back her tears, she wanted to be the best, strong mom she could be.
This wasn’t happening, or was it? A doctor peaked his head in and said we have to go soon. She looked at him in desperation and direction, what was she to do or say to this little boy who was only a few hours old and being taken away? With the most kind, gentle eyes the doctor looked at her and said, “talk to him, tell him that you love him, that everything will be ok and put your arm in this hole and touch him, stroke his arm, his back and let him know you will be there for him and see him in a few days”.
The first touch of a son so long awaited was like stroking a small baby animal. So tiny, so frail, he looked like a baby Robin bird, he was breathing and alive. The feeling was like that of the softest velvety material she’d ever felt. Warm and breathing with his chest moving up and down. She spoke words of love and courage to say she’d always be there for him no matter what happened. To not give up and to stay around long enough for her and dad to hold him and cuddle him in their arms. Just while she was getting comfortable talking to Phillip, the kind doctor said “we have to go”.
At 10:30pm the sound of helicopter blades lifting the air ambulance off the roof of the Dickinson hospital were the eeriest sounds a mother wants to hear. A sound that stays with a person for a life time.
Life given and life taken away - - - away by air ambulance. A life they had so patiently waited for and now they did not know if this was the first and the last time they would see their precious baby boy, Phillip.
By midnight, grandma had arrived to meet her first grandson. Being a RN by trade she was used to high pressure, medical situation and well prepared to be the family to stand by Phillip’s side to encourage him to be strong and stay around long enough to have mom and dad meet up with him in a few days. He was not alone!
As for mom and dad, very little sleep crossed their eyes. Only the thought of getting out of the hospital and get back to Minot and be with their son. The sleepless night passed slowly. In the early hours of the morning around 3 a.m. August 29th a call from now, grandma saying Phillip was doing fine and the doctors are taking very good care of him were the sweetest sound a new mom could hear. Grandma was staying close by him to make sure he was not alone. Oh thank God, he’s not there alone!
The rest of the story has many more years to it - - too many to share. That sweet baby boy grew and grew to a wonderful strong man. A man because in age that is what you would say he is, yet to a mom he will always be my precious baby boy!