How crazy life can get... Thursday, June 24th started out as a wonderful day - and ended tragically. It is a day I will never forget because I experienced every emotion possible that day! Let me explain... I work with individuals that have disabilities. One of my clients, an almost 3 year old little girl with multiple disabilities was adopted by a wonderful family, and I was there to witness that on Thursday morning. As I sat in the court room and watched this family answer questions, and promise to love her and care for her... I began thinking about how precious family is, and how blessed this family was to have so many loved ones there to celebrate that day! I'd like to think of myself not just as a professional working with them, but as a friend as well. It was a beautiful morning full of tears! Tears of joy of course!
Late that afternoon I received a phone call from a fellow support coordinator asking if I had spoken with my dear friend Corrine that day. I told her that I hadn't, and asked why she wondered. She said Corrine had called with a crisis and asked her to call immediately, but that she never answered. She called families, providers, and nobody had heard from her but thought they heard background noise during a phone call that indicated she had been in a fender bender. I told her boss that I would call Corrines husband, and then let her know what I found out. When I called Damon, as soon as he picked up the phone I could hear in his voice that something was terribly wrong. He told me that Corrine had been in a horrible accident that morning and that it was on ksl.com and that she was in surgery, and they had lost their unborn child. I asked if there was anything I could do for him and her, and he asked me to tell her boss. I asked him to keep me up to date and he said he would.
I called Corrine's boss and gave her the information, and immediately read the news story and then called our two other best friends (there were 4 of us that spent a LOT of time together) and let them know. The 3 of us talked and cried and set times when we would visit, and how we would keep each other posted. Late that evening, Corrines husband said that they didn't want visitors but that Corrine wanted to see us, and asked if we could come. I let him know we would be there in the morning.
Friday morning was extremely humbling for me. I arrived at the hospital with Bethany at around 9:00 am, and found the room where Corrine's family was waiting for her to get out of surgery. They rushed her in that morning to repair her legs which had been crushed in the car. I hugged Damon immediately and asked what I could do to help. I sat and listened as Damon explained the crash to me, and then told me how their precious daughter, Livi, had saved her mothers life. During the crash, the engine of the car was pushed right into Corrines lap. It ruptured her uterus and Livi's body fell out of the uterus and was pressed up against Corrine's organs acting as a human bandaid and preventing her mother from bleeding to death. At that moment, Damon's father introduced me to baby Livi, and put her into my arms. I sat and cried as I held Livi, looking at this beautiful and perfect little infant who was due in just 6 short weeks. The tears came even more as Damon bravely said "maybe that was her purpose in this life - was to save her mother". What strength he had! Livi was perfect and tiny at just over 3 lbs. She has curly hair the exact shade as her mothers, and she has her fathers ears. She looked so peaceful and I half expected her to start breathing and wake up. Corrine was still in surgery when I left, but I promised I would come back to visit today.
Corrine and Damon are two of the most wonderful people in the world and they spent years trying to have a baby, and after 6 artificial inseminations were blessed with Livi. My heart aches for them at this time, knowing how much they wanted her in their family. The thing that impressed me the most, is the strength that Damon had. Undoubtedly this is the hardest thing he has had to endure, losing his unborn daughter and almost losing his wife... and yet he was strong. I know this is because of their Faith in God! I felt some comfort knowing that because of their temple blessings, that they will be able to live with Livi again, and she will be a part of their family forever.
It really made me start to think about my own family. Travis is not a member of the LDS religion, thus we are not sealed in the temple. I couldn't help but think that if that were us, what would happen to our child? Who would she live with in the next life? It kept me awake last night... I'm not sure how to react now and what to say to my dear husband... but i'll let you know.
If you're interested in following Corrine's story - please feel free to follow her blog!