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Wednesday, April 4, 2007

I Bought Her Chairs

I had another dream about Katie on Monday night. This time it felt like a dream though. She came into the apartment and grabbed a Coke Zero and started telling me about how they thought she was dead but she really wasn't and that she was back. I feel like I had this dream to show me what a dream was compared to the one the night before. Either way, I'm quite glad that I have been dreaming about her lately.
Yesterday was Katie's due date. Fran spent the day with me and we got into the basement and started organizing some things. I grabbed all of the boxes of baby stuff and brought them upstairs to repack in plastic bins. That way it would be a little more protected than in the boxes which were getting crushed. It was tough to look through all of the stuff. A few years ago, Katie discovered the John Lennon Baby Collection. She was such a huge Beatles fan and the collection was perfect for us. We didn't want to know the sex of the baby and it was very androgynous. Lots of bold colors and animals. Unfortunately, the collection was discontinued a year before we discovered it so Katie figured out how to use Ebay and we went a little nuts trying to find all of the pieces we wanted. We have everything from bedding to lamps to light covers and wall art, diapers, piggy banks and baby booties. We talked briefly about what I would do with the stuff and Katie said that I should just Ebay it, but I can't let go of it. I'm sure there's someone out there that would very excited to have it and it isn't fair to hang on to something that I can't use, but it is just difficult to let go. If I ever have a baby, it wouldn't be fair to make my new wife use this stuff. But maybe she'd want to. It's just too much to consider. I laughed at the stuff that we had fought so hard to win on Ebay and cried when I found the baby booties. Katie was so excited about them. She had bought them and kept them secret. She wanted to surprise me with them to tell me we were pregnant. But her plan backfired, because the day we found out, she had tested that morning and she wasn't pregnant. Then at lunch, she came home and said we should test and get it over with (knowing that she wasn't) and as she was bringing the test to me to show me the negative, it showed positive. She was so confused, she walked up and said, "what does this mean?" Then she explained her elaborate plan and how it had backfired and then she went and grabbed the booties. It was funny and exciting. She had me call the maker of the pregnancy test to ask them what it meant. We called the doctor and had a blood test drawn that day. We had been trying for so long that we just couldn't believe that it had finally worked. Tonight, I was talking with one my servers and she said that how she was able to deal with the whole thing was to think that Prudence happened so that Katie would have someone to greet her when she arrived in Heaven. It was very sweet of her to tell me that and more importantly that she cared enough to try and justify it.
I have been an emotional basket case today. I watched the beginning and end (not the middle) of Phenomenon today. I had never seen it, but it got to me when they mentioned George buying Lacy's chairs. At one point in our life, Katie told me she loved me because I bought her chairs. I had no idea what that meant and I forgot about it until I saw the movie. Then I understood. I have received a lot of cards this week from people wanting me to know that they were thinking about me. It has been nice. One of the things Katie looked most forward to each day was "mail call." I would get the mail and there would be any number of cards and I would read each card and pass it to her to look at. It was our little routine. Even when she wouldn't respond much, I still looked forward to that time each day. Maybe it was just knowing that other people cared enough to write a little something and spend whatever a stamp cost to send a note to a loved one or a stranger. I got a note today from the chaplain at HUP that spent time with us. It was precious that she still was thinking about us this many months later. She sees hundreds of patients a week and yet, she took the time to write. It made me think a lot about our time at the hospital, and the words of Katie's GI doctor continued to run through my head. I saw him in the parking garage a couple of days after he performed her biopsy and we stopped and talked and he told me, "of all the patients I have ever had, I wish I could rewrite your story." She touched everyone in the hospital the month that we were there. I never want to step foot in HUP again, but I am thankful to everyone there for taking care of Katie the way they did. So I have made it through a big milestone. I have dreaded April 3rd for quite a while. Obviously, nothing bad happened, but it was just a big reminder of what I thought was supposed to be. Our dream of having our baby at HUP and having the jacuzzi tub room with my family coming to visit Easter weekend. Being off work and up at all hours to help with feedings and diaper changes. Having my mom and Katie's mom staying at the apartment to help. Holding those little fingers and looking into her eyes. She looked so much like Katie, I wonder if she would have had blond hair and blue eyes. I thought I would be talking about how proud I was of Katie in the delivery room and hard she worked. I thought we'd be taking lots of pictures and emailing photos. And I thought I would be able to hold a perfect baby that was something that Katie and I made. It would be us. These days will pass and there will be some good days again. Katie's birthday is a couple of months away and that will be my next big hurdle. It seems as if time is flying by when I look back and standing still when I look forward. For someone who doesn't want to grow old, I sure would like for time to speed up a bit!

2 comments:

Tara said...

Hey James, I've been thinking of you lately. I didn't know Katie's exact due date, but I knew the first week of April was close. I'm very glad that you and Fran have eachother at this time. I feel better knowing you have someone close to you when I am so far. Give me a call sometime. Luv you, T

tinmil said...

GOD IS WITH YOU JAMES, YOU WILL TAKE THESE SPECIAL "DREAMS" AND MOMENTS AND YOU WILL CARRY THEM WITH YOU FOREVER. IT HAS BEEN NEARLY 9 YRS FOR ME, I HAVE MOVED ON IN LOVE BUT CARRY THE LOVE FOR MY LATE HUSBAND IN STORAGE IN MY HEART FOREVER..THE LOVE DOESN'T CHANGE IT JUST MOVES TO A DIFFERENT PLACE IN OUR HEARTS. I REMEMBER ACTUALLY WALKING INTO CHURCH A FEW MONTHS AFTER MY HUBBY HAD PASSED AND SWORE FROM THE BACK IT WAS HIM SITTING IN THE PEW AHEAD. I WALKED UP TO EMBRACE HIM AND THEN CAUGHT MYSELF REALIZING" SILLY JEN THAT IS NOT HIM" I PRAYED IT WAS BUT KNEW BETTER...ONE OF MY DAUGHTERS WAS 11 WHEN HER DADDY PASSED AND SHE SAID TO ME IN THE CAR ONE DAY...HEY MOM, DAD HAS BEEN ON A LONG ENOUGH VACATION HE NEEDS TO COME HOME NOW....I EXPLAINED TO HER HE WAS HOME WITH OUR LORD AND SAVIOR...AND WE WILL MEET HIM AGAIN ONE DAY WHEN IT IS OUR TIME TO MEET OUR MAKER...MAY YOU HAVE A BLESSED EASTER..MAY THE DAY BE A BREATH OF FRESHNESS FOR YOU AS YOU CHERISH THOSE WONDERFUL MEMORIES WITH YOUR WIFE....WITH FAITH AND FRIENDSHIP IN WIDOWHOOD, JEN MILLER KC,MO

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Through the worst tragedy I could never imagine, my life has become what it has become. Through this blog, I will continue to tell my story. Some days are good and many are not, but those are the cards I've been delt and I will continue to play my hand until the Lord makes me fold. Also, I hope that you will learn more about Pancreatic cancer and help bring light to this horrible disease so that other victims will be given more time to enjoy life than my precious wife had. Happy reading.