Dad's Story



Immediately after hearing the words, "as you can see we are looking at the heart chamber and there is no heartbeat, your baby is dead", my life was turned upside down.
Yet I could not be weak, I had to be stronger than I ever had been before.

Candy was lying on the hospital bed and was a wreck. She was screaming and crying and I had to be strong for her. I held her and I comforted her. We rocked back and forth until she was able to gather her emotions enough to be able to walk out to the car.

This was the first day of many that I had to be strong and hold myself together and be that support person, that rock for my wife to hold onto.
I could not break down and cry.

The next day I was at the hospital and my wife was going into labor and I was planning the funeral of my daughter who was yet to be born. There I was choosing the gravesite, the funeral home, the date for the funeral -all things I never ever imagined having to do and I was doing them for my first and only child.
Yet I had to be strong, there was no time to cry.

After 22 hours of trying to support my wife during her agonizing labor, we came to that moment, which should have been so joyous. There came Grace, and as I saw her body being delivered from my wife, all I could think was breathe baby, breathe, move, scream. Please do something, but nothing happened. Next thing I knew I was cutting her cord, she was being cleaned up and then I was holding her. What an incredible mess of emotions flooded my heart. I was happy to have a child, proud of my wife and daughter, but there was my stillborn baby, laying still - like a porcelain doll in my arms. I felt frozen in time and I didn't want to give her up, but we thought we had to. No one told us there wasn't a set time limit.
It was not the time to be weak. My wife needed my support. No time to cry.

The funeral came and went and our friends and family were wonderful, but they had to go back to their lives and so there we were, just the two of us. I had to make my plans to go back to work, but my other plans and dreams were all dashed. I was a father, but with no daughter to hold, no diapers to change, no laughing or crying baby would beckon me to her crib side. We were alone, with only the company of unwanted strangers - pain, heartache and grief, and no baby.

It's getting close to 1 year now and I am still trying to be a rock for my wife while I try dealing with my grief by pressing myself onward. I have jumped into work, and my responsibilities as a husband. But to see my heart, you'd see a daddy who has a huge hole in his heart. I miss my daughter, my baby Grace. I want so much to hold her close, kiss her sweet cheeks, and play peek-a-boo. It's horrible to know that I never will get that chance.

I do grieve for you Grace. I grieve everyday. It may not look like it from the outside to others but inside my heart is torn in two.
But for now there is no time to cry. I need to be strong.




To any fathers out there who need to talk or just want to get some stuff off their chest, please feel free to email me anytime. I hope one day to help provide some comfort to other fathers who need some understanding and compassion when their life has been turned upside-down by this tragedy.

Stephen
Daddy to Grace



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