Baby Maverick

This blog was created to keep family and friends updated on what's going on with the pregnancy, birth, and surgical plan for Maverick. We'll also be able to keep everyone updated during his surgery and recovery and hopefully be able to show you some cute pictures of him, Maddie, Carter and Chloe along the way.

This was the original intent; however, when we started this blog we had no idea the twists and turns our lives would take. Our sweet baby Maverick was born September 12, 2008 with Transposition of the Great Arteries, ASD, and VSD. We expected to have a baby boy to bring home three to four weeks after his surgery. He had numerous complications after his arterial switch and fought through many that would have taken the life from an adult. He passed away February 24, 2009 - without ever coming home.

This blog is now a place I share my feelings, work through the grief, remember Maverick, and try to make sense out of our life without him. I hope in doing so I am giving a name and a face to babies everywhere born with congenital heart defects.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Happy First Birthday in Heaven, Mav

One year ago today...


We had such high hopes for a successful surgery. We were prepared to bring home a sweet baby in three weeks - four weeks tops (my words). I held Mav without any wires or tubes for the first and last time during his life.
If all of this has taught me anything it should be that no matter what plans I have, ultimately, I am not in control. I was reminded of that several times today; even though we had everything planned out perfectly. The first issue, it rained all day. This afternoon, kids and I went to Staples to make the tags for the balloons. When we got home and tied them on, they were too heavy for the balloons to float. We had to tie two balloons together to lift the tags. We were leaving to go to the cemetery with balloons and the cake (we weren't eating the cake there, I just wanted my talented photographer friend, Dejah, to take a "good" picture of it) when on the way out the door, it slipped from my hand and landed face-down (still in the box) on the porch. I screamed. The cake was so perfect - we had it made here in Shawnee (if you need a cake let me know and I'll give you Michelle's number). It had the airplane that was on Mav's dry erase board in Dallas on it (if any big D people are reading, let Morgan know we used it on his cake). I hadn't taken any pictures of the cake of , yet. It was pretty messed up. Greg told me it was okay and that today wasn't about the cake. We headed for the cemetery. We had a few "test" balloons, so Greg and Carter got out of the vehicle to let one go and one piece of the umbrella broke when they opened it. Then, balloon headed straight for a tree and stuck there. We decided to change plans and release the balloons from our front yard. We drove back home and went inside. During all the shuffle, the balloons became entangled - they were a mess. We finally untangled them, went outside and four got tangled again. When we finally got them untangled, the rain was so hard or the atmospheric pressure was so high that they wouldn't float. They drifted into the road and into the neighbors' yards. So, we gathered the balloons and went back into the house soaking wet and thanked our friends for their attempts to take pictures of Mav's day. When 7:02pm rolled around we took the disheveled cake out of the box, lit a candle on it and sang "Happy Birthday" for Maverick. The kids blew out the candle and a few seconds later it lit back up. It's not even a trick candle. Maybe it was a sign from Mav, or maybe it was God letting us know we're not even in control of something as small as a candle.
So, we're going to try to release the balloons another day. I suppose it doesn't have to be exactly on his birthday. That was just my plan.
Greg and I were talking on the way to the cemetery about our other kids first birthdays. We were always stressed out about getting the house clean and decorated and making sure everyone was invited; making sure the cake was just right and child was rested and happy for the event; making sure the batteries were charged for the cameras; making sure the clothes were right for the pictures we would be taking, etc. Today put a lot of things into perspective for us. This entire past year has. We shouldn't stress over the little things. We should enjoy each day no matter what problem it brings. Most problems are small in the grand scheme of things. I would have loved to have the "stress" of those small problems today.
Last night I had a hard time getting to sleep. I spent the afternoon with my friend, Dejah, talking about ideas for Mav's grave marker. She was going to design it for us. Greg and I were talking later yesterday evening and he threw out some ideas for the design. They were great. I called D and asked her to stop working on it. I cut out a piece of craft paper in the size of the marker and started drawing. Before I went to bed, I had it finished. Greg looked at it when he woke up and loved it - we think it will be perfect. I'm relieved we were able to at least finish the design before his birthday. We'll get with someone this week and talk about having it made. We've had such a hard time sitting down and trying to come up with something for his grave. Some people have the markers ready and placed in a few months, and we've felt bad that we haven't done that. It's just been so hard to look back through all the pictures and pick which ones we want on it. I'm glad we've finally decided. I can't wait to have the finished piece to share with everyone.
Before I get off here for the night, I just wanted to thank everyone for their sweet sentiments, cards, gifts, flowers at the grave, and prayers. It means so much to know that our sweet boy hasn't been forgotten - really, you'll never know how much it means to us. Thanks so much. We're so blessed to have you all. Love you all, jc
For momma's sweet boy on your first birthday,
We miss you so much. I miss walking into your room in the morning and saying, "How's momma's sweet boy?" and kissing your soft little cheeks. I miss seeing the look you would give me when you wanted your mobile turned on. I miss holding your hands. I miss rocking you during our special time during the day. I miss seeing you feel your favorite little monkey. I miss reading you "Brown Bear," you always liked looking at the bright colored animals on the pages. I wish we could have shared those times at home. You're in our thoughts everyday.
Thank you for being such a fighter and for trying so hard. I know you gave it everything you had and we're so proud of you. I'm so sorry for all the things you had to go through. I'm so glad you no longer have to endure the tubes, pokes, fevers, dressing changes, procedures, and pain. I would've given anything to take your place. Daddy and I both would have. You are truly my hero and Daddy's, too. I know you don't miss this place at all. I know you're happy and healthy and free now and that makes me happy for you. I just sooo wish things could've been different. It just seems so unfair.
You have touched our lives and changed us forever. Your spirit will always live on as long as we're alive, I promise. I hope you know how much you were, and are, loved. That was one of my constant prayers for you while you were here with us.
We love and miss you, little man. One day we'll see you again.
Love you forever,
Mommy

4 comments:

Mary Ellen said...

Thank you for sharing with us. Praying for you! You are so right that the little things dont matter we should step back and just enjoy our loved ones everyday that we are blessed when them

Bill and Mary said...

Juli ~ Virtual hugs coming your way....we are going to do our balloons for Mav soon, our ride home was not as planned (but what is, right?). I will send pics. We have a note for Mav to send with them...and I'd really like Drew to send them off. I know Mav loved his first birthday in Heaven and is smiling down on all of you, loving you all everyday.
Love,
ME

Anonymous said...

What a dear post...I'm sitting here replying, with tears rolling down my face. My 3 yr old son is asking if daddy made me mad...kids say the darndest things, dont they? I replied to him, "No, honey, mommy is reading a story about another sweet, young boy" and he told me not to cry. I'm sorry your day did not turn out how you dreamed it would, but I also love how you explained that we're not in control...there is a lot of truth in that.
Christie

annamarie said...

That was a beautiful post. Sorry I am so late in seeing this. I said a prayer for little Mav today. Brown Bear is Eve's favorite book. I would recite it to her many times a day - when she was a newborn in the NICU. Those were long months in the hospital and it is still a comfort to this day. Thank you for sharing...