One year ago today March 18th at 6am….
The doctors couldn’t do anymore for Levi and the medicines to keep his heart beating were not working any longer. They were giving him the maximum dosages and he wasn’t responding the same. Through the night we knew it was bad but we still had hope that this was just a nightmare and that they could fix him. When they told us that there was nothing left that they could do we asked to hold Levi we wanted to be close to him when his heart would stop so he would know how much we loved him. They placed Levi in my arms and that’s where he was when his heart stopped. Glenn was next to me holding his feet, my mom was on the other side with her arms under his head and grandmaw Bobbie was behind us with her hands on Levi. Our other family was there standing around us during this most difficult time.
We got to stay with Levi after he died for several hours. By this time we had no sleep because when Glenn found him it was 3:00 pm in the afternoon on March 17th. We were all crying, we so tired and our bodies were in shock. One of the hardest things was to wake up Victoria and tell her, her brother died knowing that before she went to sleep she felt everything would be fine because God told her that it would. She was asleep in a little room at the hospital where we made her a pallet on the floor. I woke her up and told her the horrible news, I will never forget the look in her eyes and her random nervous response. Victoria’s struggle over the last year has been hard to see which is why we feel that there needs to be more grief support for siblings or children who lose a significant family member.
The absolute toughest thing was that we had to leave Levi at the hospital and go home without him. I drove because no one else could. We stopped at almost every exit coming home because through the tears it was so hard to see and the exhaustion and shock were almost too much for me to handle. I would pull over and I would have to get out of the car to try and get myself together to make the next 15 miles before pulling off again i did this until we made it home. It seemed like it took forever and honestly this was the first day of many where time had no importance. Pulling up in the driveway at home was another emotional memory we had to go in the house knowing Levi would never be back. We knew that this was the place where the nightmare started and we would have to see his room with him no longer in it. But we as a family gathered our strength to go in the house. I went immediately to my room and not sure that I left it for days.
The shock, confusion and sadness engulfed us. Glenn and I were in a daze. We now had to plan a funeral for our son instead of wondering what we were going to put in his Easter basket.
Planning a funeral for a small child seems so wrong because it just isn’t the way it’s supposed to be. The feeling is like you are doing something so wrong. I knew as wrong as this was that there was no way we were just going to do a normal service. I knew that what we did for Levi had to be right and perfect. We didn’t chose the ONLY casket that the funeral home had. We said we wanted Levi to be buried in something very special. So we began to search for the perfect casket. We found the Trappist casket which is hand made and blessed by monks in the New Melleray Abbey. Each casket comes with hand made crosses made from the same wood and engraved. We ordered several of these crosses to give to our family so each of them would have a piece to take home.
Here is a link to their site and the blessing said for each casket: http://www.trappistcaskets.com/about/casket-blessing/
Another thing we were working on was putting together pictures this task was so difficult that even with the help of family we just couldn’t do this. So we reached out to our church to see if there was anyone there that could help us with this very difficult task. We wanted the Video of pictures to have the uplifting music from the Reign forest. The songs on the Video are ones that Levi was very familiar with and he and Victoria would sing them in the back seat of the car.
My memory escapes me from the next few days during the funeral but I can remember a few things. The one I can remember most vividly, just like it just happened yesterday was when Glenn and I walked in to see Levi in the casket before visitation. That is when it hit me that this was not a dream. I remembering screaming and crying so loud and falling to the ground. I could not control myself but I didn’t want to either, my child was in that casket, the pain was excruciating. I remember Glenn saying honey there are other people waiting to come in and I said “I DON’T GIVE A SH*T” who is waiting there was no way I was going to rushed through this part of my life. Who really cares if I wanted to be in that room alone for the rest of the night, that was our child and that would be our choice but at some point not really sure how long it took, I was able to contain myself enough to let our family come and see Levi. We chose to do a closed casket because it just isn’t right to see a child in a casket. It just isn’t the thing that anyone other than our immediate family needed to see. It was hard enough on all of us. I will say again it just isn’t right to bury a child.
I do wish I had a picture of Levi’s flowers they were so beautiful we handpicked each flower that was put in his spray’s and we also included some of his favorite toys. This was also a task that shouldn’t of had to happen but it did.
Our Pastor Ron Watts and our music leader Brad Miles came on the day of the funeral service and I remember who peaceful I felt when Ron talked to us. Brad brought his guitar and sang some beautiful songs, we basically rocked out loudly to some Christian music but it was exactly how Levi would have wanted it. Everyone joined in and sang. I’ll never forget that.
We went home and family gathered. I don’t remember much but I do remember that our family was there for us for days, months, and now a year. We have a very close family and group of friends and we are blessed by having them. This has been a very difficult road one that can’t be walked alone. We have kept our faith in God and that he has a plan. One for Levi and one for us. We have seen some wonderful things happen this last year that cannot be explained as coincidences. The hand of God has been a part of why certain people are led to us there’s no doubt about it.
I will end this weeks sadness for our family with this that I am borrowing from a website http://www.gotquestions.org/hand-of-God.html
“The hand of God is a symbol of God’s guidance, instruction, and discipline. The more we recognize the hand of God, the better we will be able to follow His lead. Through the study of God’s Word, a strong prayer life, and an abiding trust in God, we can learn to recognize, trust, and enjoy the hand of God moving in our lives.”
Today we are going to eat peanut butter “samdwhiches” (how Levi would say it) in Cape by the river because the last day he was with his Mimi and papa Mosley he asked to do this but they never got a chance to. So today that’s what we will do.
<3 Levi’s Mommy