One Hour: For Anderson

Today I find my mind drifting back to Anderson and what he would be like today had he been choosen to walk this world.

You see, while I was pregnant my friend was also pregnant. I was due in January and she in March. But her baby was born too early, too weak to survive, to even draw a breath. At only 27 weeks, Anderson barely had a chance. His momma has very aggresive Lupus and her health and his became very precarious. She was hospitalized a week before his birth with the understanding that he could come at any moment, that he may or may not make it. 

On December 22, 2010 his daddy called and said they were taking his momma into delivery. We were all really scared and someone was driving him to the hospital. Anderson was born prior to his arrival, weighing in at only 11 ounces.

Anderson lived for one hour while his parents held him. They had one hour to live a lifetime. One hour to see everything he could be, to suck in the tiny life they had wanted so vehemently. One hour to say hello. One hour to say goodbye. One little hour to do so much.

Today, I wonder what he would be like as I watch my own daughter. My daughter who now crawls and babbles, eats and sleeps, cries and laughs. I wonder if they would have played together and been great pals. I know they would be. I wonder if he would have been serious like his momma or gooffy like his daddy. Would his hair be red or brown or blonde? Would he be crawling now too? What foods would he like? 

I feel like I lost a child with them that day. But I didn't. In fact, I couldn't even see them that day. And they didn't want to see me. After all, I was still pregnant. I had a belly that entered a room five minutes before me and after such a loss there is no way they could have born to see me. They buried their son almost a month later, a funeral I could not attend for the same reason. It is just unseemly for a pregnant woman to bear witness to an infant's funeral. My husband and father attended that day and my heart was with them, even as my own baby kicked in my belly.

The day my daughter was born, Anderson's momma and daddy were there. She brought me ice chips and cool rags for my head. She rubbed my feet. He watched the monitor and told me when my contractions were coming and how intense they were (as if I didn't know!). She watched my baby enter this world, eyes wide with wonder and a heart filled with joy and grief. 

So this is for Anderson and the hour he lived. One hour for a lifetime.

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