*Starting to star the ones that might be sad for family, read at your own risk
I think every person who experiences a loss asks the question "why?"...I think every person questions their own existence, God's existence...every person eventually has to make some sort of peace within his or herself in order to go on.
When Rip was in the hospital, I was so helpless. I could do nothing to help my child. It sounds like such a cliche, but it was quite literally like waking up in a nightmare...I was in physical pain from the surgery, my mind was all over the place from pain killers and hormones and emotions, I hadn't slept in days, and all I could do was sit there and watch as my baby got worse.
At some point, the doctors allowed Parke and me to sit in on their "rounds"...which in theory is a great idea, where you as the parents can listen to the doctors discuss "the patient" and then ask questions...in practice it was horrifying to hear your child discussed as "the patient" followed by longer and longer lists of medical terms, none of which sound good. As Rip's mother I felt desperate to understand, trying to grasp on to some handle of the situation.
It was during one of these meetings when I felt like I just could not take anymore, I could not sit there and listen to them discuss this "infant male" for one more minute without losing my mind, when I heard a voice in my head say very clearly, "Anne, you need to relax, I will protect him."
Of course I thought it was God. And I relaxed immediately. Rip was going to be okay, God was protecting him! I told everybody in my family what I felt and heard, I didn't listen to anything else the doctors said.
And then Rip died. I have never felt so betrayed.
I was confused for such a long time...I know what I heard (despite the painkillers). I know what I heard and I know that I felt peace after I heard it.
It's taken me four and a half months but this is how I see it...I still believe that was God, and I believe he did protect Rip.
I believe that Rip is God's child who was in pain, and he protected him in a way that he will never have to feel pain again. He protected Rip in a way that I could not.
Now, it's not like I am fine with Rip's death because this happened. Far from it, I am in turns furious, shocked, despairing...but like everyone else, I have to make my peace in order to go on.
There are still a million more questions out there, all of which have been asked with no answer...why Rip, why us, why, why, why? But I don't have the answer to those questions, and I don't think that I ever will. What I do have is a belief that when I heard "I will protect him"...that was a promise that was not broken.