What did my day look like a year ago today, Thursday, March 3, 2011?
It was a regular work day for me, but I had a little bit more pep in my step. It was my last day at work before my maternity leave began. I would work one more full day and then work from home to finish my progress reports. I had to come back the following Tuesday so that I could hand them out. My Principal asked a few times if I was coming back on Tuesday. I reassured her I was each time. I thought, “Maybe she is planning a surprise shower for me. Why else would she want me to come back?” I couldn’t stop smiling because I knew I was getting closer to having Bella and I would be able to stay home and rest for a few days before she came.
I was eating lunch and conversing with a coworker and one of the nuns in the faculty room. She was telling me how she was going to be 78 years old the following week. I remember asking her how long she had been a nun. She replied that she had been a nun for 49 years. She said, “But it only feels like 10 minutes…under water.” She began to laugh hysterically as so did I. She told me how she once was in love and dated a young man for three years and after she accepted his proposal, she decided to become a nun and had to return the ring and the proposal. She also went to Mexico for 25 years because it was more fun than the United States. She always knew how to make me laugh.
Throughout the day I said some temporary goodbyes to my students. I was in my last class when I was called into another room. The class had surprised me with some blueberry muffins as a farewell. They wanted to do a little something for me since I was going to be gone for a while. It was a great way to end my day.
That night I remember being so tired. I had my weekly OB/GYN visit the next afternoon. I was so excited to set a delivery date. Paul was watching a movie as I lied down on the couch. He paused the movie to put the kids to bed and I listened as he said his nightly prayers with the kids. They prayed for me and Bella. He is such a great daddy. I was going to go to bed, but Paul wanted me to stay with him in the living room. He loved being beside me even if I was asleep. He would cover me up with a blanket and wake me when he was ready to go to sleep. Some time had passed and I began to wake up because I was uncomfortable. I had a sharp pain in my back, a pain I had never felt before, and needed to go lie down in bed. Later I would question that very moment over and over again, and wonder if that was when we lost our little girl.