Justin went into the hospital last year on February 14th and we thought he would only be there for a couple days. Each day came with more bad news and we weren’t sure when he would get released. There were a couple days he gave us a scare and we weren’t sure he would make it. The baby shower was coming up and I didn’t want to do it.
During all the years Justin had cancer that was the first time I realized he might not live. Those months in the hospital were the darkest days of my life. I got to the point where I wasn’t even excited that I was pregnant. My excitement to meet the twins was replaced with worry and fear. The thought of living life as a single mom without Justin was unbearable. With all these thoughts going through my head it seemed impossible to go celebrate the twins. How was I supposed to be happy and celebrate life when my husband was about to lose his.
I started to think that maybe I should cancel the baby shower. I could see myself crying with each person who greeted me. I didn’t want to have to give updates or explain what was going on. I had this constant anxiety that something bad would happen while I was gone. I had been at the hospital with him every day and I was scared to leave him. I wasn’t sure what to do.
Something I miss most about Justin was his ability to calm me down and talk to me. He always knew exactly what to say to make me feel better. I’m getting emotional writing about this because I miss it so much. When I was undecided about what to do he knew exactly what to say to help me make a decision. After talking to him, he convinced me to go to the baby shower.
My sister came up with an idea to contact people before the shower and let them know what was going on. She asked that we not talk about hospital stuff and focus on baby talk.
The baby shower turned out perfect and was everything I ever imagined it to be. It turned out to be a nice break from my high anxiety life. I was able to step away from cancer and enjoy a moment of happiness. The shower helped lift my spirits again and got me excited to meet these two boys.
After the baby shower I went straight to the hospital and told Justin all about it. I showed him some gifts and shared all the fun moments. It wasn’t until later that evening my dad told me that Justin was almost rushed to the ICU during my shower. I guess his pain meds were making him unresponsive and once they lowered his dose he was fine. I’m glad they decided to wait and tell me later. I would have been a nervous wreck trying to get there if I had known.
I’m so grateful to all my friends and family who came to that shower. Even though the situation with Justin was serious, everyone still talked about our future. They all had hope in him living and spending his life with me and the boys. That meant everything to me. It made the shower positive and kept me hopeful!
I also want to say thank you for the gifts that were sent in the mail as well. I had so many wonderful people reach out and send me things! After Justin got out of the hospital our lives got so crazy and I feel bad I never sent thank you cards! Love you all!!
I remeber this day like it was yesterday. Mitch and I were with Justin and his vital signs were getting worse and worse. Justin was less and less aware of what was going on around him, but he wanted so badly for the shower to go off well. Finally, they came to tell us that he needed to go to the ICU and Mitch really took the lead. We were working with the weekend staff who are all, to the person, wonderful and capable, But, they didn’t have the history of the people who had been working with Justin. As a healthcare executive, this was so enlightening for me to watch. And more so when Mitch asked them to take off Justin’s Fentanyl patch. In just an hour he was feeling better and even able to get out of bed when Jennifer came home to report. I was so thankful for small miracles. In a horrible situation, we had many of these small and identifiable miracles and Justin and Jennifer were SO strong through it!