Pam keeps asking me, “John, what were you thinking on your trip home?”
Waiting for the plane I wept in a corner looking away from people. The flight home was no different. I was just quieter. The same plane that took me to San Fransisco was refueled and returning to DC with me on it.
Right before I boarded my dad called me and told me about an organization called, “Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep.” It’s a worldwide group of photographers that in the event of the death of a baby, they come to the hospital and take pictures of your child free of charge. How can I even process this kind of question? My baby is dead? Take pictures of my dead baby? I don’t even know if we are having a boy or girl. All I know is our last checkup – our baby and my wife were in good health not a week earlier. It’s just a horrible morbid thought to have someone come and take pictures. I told my dad no.
Words will land on me,
Then abandon me,
Mangle, untangle me,
Leave me on the floor
Rhymes they sprang in me,
Summer sang in me,
But summer sings in me no more.
– Winter, From No Line On The Horizon’s companion video
I got on the plane and listened to a song by U2 on the video companion to “No Line On The Horizon” called Winter. I listened to it on repeat the entire flight home.
This is what I wrote on my laptop on the flight home:
March 9, 2009
I’m on my way back home.
“My bible is out of reach. My laptop is all I can really use. I’m trying to watch movies just to think about something else. It didn’t work for long.
When I get in, I’ll go back to where I left my car this morning. Pay the ten dollars. Drive 2 hours back to York, and go right to the hospital where Pam is waiting for me now to deliver a baby who died.
When our baby comes out we will find out if it is Mary Jane or Benjamin Edward.
Right before the plane took off I got an email dad sent out to his network of friends. The subject read, “Our grandchild is in heaven.”
I burst into tears.
Father, help me to be strong for Pam tonight. Jesus, draw close to Pam. Give her life tonight. She needs you. How can a woman face giving birth to death. When our baby comes out we will die too. “