Saturday, November 9, 2013

Testimony In Life

Drowning In Despair

This past month has been the hardest in my life, and I've been through some pretty hard times. As I've posted before I am a survivor of NF (Necrotizing Fasciitis http://nnff.org/), and I thought I has survived hell. Then, through certain circumstances, I lost my home that I had lived in for the past 6 years. And now, I am left to walk this earth and bare the heart ache of loosing my only child.

When I was in the hospital, after having delivered my son via emergency (traumatic) c-section, was told that he might not make it himself, and he was flown to a different hospital. This was, I had thought, the darkest hour.

Then, a few days later I was rushed back into the hospital after being discharged (having a temperature which they could not locate the source of, but - yeah - why not, discharge her so we can't be held accountable) and was being told that I was going to die. This was, I had though, the darkest hour.

When my son Kaleb, was nearly 2 years old I had awoken to the night nurse not caring for my son properly (he was laying in his own feces) - long story short, when we rushed him to the hospital he had a temperature of 106 degrees (F) even though the doctor assured us Kaleb would be fine, he was in a coma. He started having seizures, which he had never had before. When he awoke he was a different child, where there was joyous life before now was a constricted, frustrated, uncomfortable child. This was, I thought, the darkest hour.

Three years later, my marriage was full of a depressed misery. I was the primary caregiver of our severely handicapped son, and my husband at the time was "working" constantly to make ends meet. Then the walls of this world we had built came tumbling down. The vows we had spoken, the coven that we entered into with God was broken, along with my heart... it was the first he spoke of his infidelity. Our marriage was over, he wanted out. Through the separation and divorce I stayed in His light, never did I falter or belittle the lives involved to get the results that I wanted. I stayed humble in the eyes of the Lord. I can't say that for the other parties involved. That night though, when he told me he had sex with someone else - I thought my heart was going to burst from the pain. This was, I thought, the darkest hour.

Last year when the despair had taken it's toll and this world blinded me from any hope and I had to be hospitalized. Life seemed to be spinning out of control, I had lost my means of transportation (couldn't afford car insurance and had to sell the vehicle to pay the fines through the MVA) and now I faced loosing my home as well (in the divorce agreement it stated that Kaleb's father was to pay the home mortgage in lieu of child support - his failure to do so resulted in the mortgage defaulting. The reason his father could not make the payments was that he was forced to resign from the county job, due to his failure of a drug test. He did not attempt to reinstate any form of payments once he started working again.)  When I was in the hospital program, it was a challenging time in my life. This was, I thought, the darkest hour.

Then, my ex decided to claim bankruptcy (why should he have to be held accountable - right? If you couldn't read the sarcasm there **re-read with extreme sarcasm**). In doing so he put the house his son and I had been living in on the fast track for foreclosure. The next several months I spent on the phone trying to figure out ways that we could keep the house. Unfortunately, my boyfriend (who agreed to help) and I could not find a way to obtain the funding required to keep the home. I tried applying for state help, but to no avail. The bank bought our home back for nearly half of what the original cost was. Reading the letters that the home was now bank owned and that we faced eviction was a difficult time. The blessing was that my parents have been so supportive, they agreed to let us move in with them (saints they are!). My boyfriend rented a dumpster, watching the past six years and items that I had collected through out my life (including my childhood Christmas ornaments and decorations) being thrown away (trying to converge two homes into one is never an easy process) was very difficult for me. My depression increased as the dumpster increased with the contents of my life. This was, I thought, the darkest hour.

Nothing would prepare me for the early morning hours of October 6th, 2013. My boyfriend and I were asleep in the basement (that's where we're living), my dad's unsure voice was informing me that there were police officers here to speak with me. Dazed and confused I threw on my house rob and went upstairs. The light was hard for my sleepy eyes to adjust to the scene and I do not recall what the gentlemen looked like, I can only remember their uniforms. They verified who I was then asked me to have a seat...

"We're sorry to inform you that your son passed away at his father's house earlier this morning."

I knew what they had said - but, I couldn't believe it. When his father had picked him up just two days ago for his every-other-weekend visitation, Kaleb was the vision of happiness. He was smiling and letting me tickle him and enjoying life! How could he be dead? He had just been to the doctor's for his yearly physical, his doctor couldn't believe how well he was doing! How could he be dead? I had to ask the officer, "what?" They said that Kaleb's father had tried calling me (my cell phone was always by my head in case of emergencies, there had been no call - as of the time I was awoken by my father). Then he repeated how sorry they were of our loss and that we should go to his father's house. 
     I went back downstairs and had to tell my boyfriend +Justin Barnhill the news. We dressed and made our way to Kaleb's father's house. The scene upon arrival was a little shocking, like hearing of my son's death wasn't shocking enough. I know I talked to a detective, but I cannot really recall the details. As my family huddled out front in sorrow, the night nurse that had been with Kaleb came up to me and explained, his perspective, of the events leading up to Kaleb's death.
     The fight was over ~ Kaleb wasn't suppose to live to see 3, was the diagnosis I was given once when Kaleb was fighting through being sick in the hospital (which was always ten times harder for him and us all). Here he was, nearly 11. His father's family had celebrated their birthday party for him the night prior to his death. We had been planning a party for the 27th (Kaleb's birth date was 10/28/02). But now, my baby was gone. His suffering ended, he was now with God in heaven. This was my only comfort during this unreal time. 
     A sickness enveloped over me when I learned of Kaleb's death that was suffocating and that I am still riddled with today. My baby was gone. This is, by far, the darkest hour.

Kaleb Campbell Townsend 10/28/02 - 10/06/13
https://www.facebook.com/KalebCTownsend1028
When I visit his grave now, I say that I'm going to see Kaleb. I miss him every day and the pain doesn't go away. The first visit to his grave site alone was the hardest. I cried and prayed, asking for guidance. My faith has been tested time and time again, the flesh wants to scream out "WHY!", but my faith tells me God has a plan. The peace settles in saying that Kaleb is no longer suffering, your tears are of fleshly things. Kaleb is now in heaven and enjoying in His eternal promises.

One Day At A Time...

Originally, I had created his Facebook page (when he was still alive) so that I could keep Kaleb's updates and my personal life separate. Because there were times when I would comment about his father, but not necessarily want everyone to know (I have a conscious and didn't want to hurt his family members that might not know everything). I actually did have someone that I use to converse with that I knew through my ex-husbands family de-friend me because they didn't know and couldn't or wouldn't accept the truth. My thoughts: whatever! I shake my heels (meaning I kick up the dust as I walk away) never to look back. Granted - I know there are two sides to every story - but, I don't deter from the truth, plain and simple.

Each day on Kaleb's Facebook page I have been posting different memories and pictures. This helps me to hold on to those good memories that fills your heart and Spirit up to continue on through the pain. It also helps knowing that there are people out there that Kaleb's life touched and they contact me, they may like the posts, or leave memorial comments. This supports me though the days, like today, that seem to be more difficult.

Kaleb would have been 11 this past October 28th. My family and I still rallied together for his birthday. We celebrated with ice cream cake, cupcakes, and balloons. Kaleb's condition wouldn't allow him to eat, but once a year for his birthday he was allowed to taste his ice cream cake, which he loved. He would smack his lips and anticipate more! This year though, we indulged on his behalf.
     We also went and purchased helium balloons (in his favorite color of course - red). It was so hard for me, containing and trying to keep composure. Why? I don't know - it was family, if anything I was surrounded by those that loved me the most. But, it was more likely because my nieces were there. They're having a hard time through this too and I guess I just wanted to be 'strong', but there are strength in tears too. However, we all wrote our messages to Kaleb on the balloons, walked them outside and set them free!
     Bubbles were also playfully prancing around in the air during this time. For Kaleb's funeral, I had the little party favor bubbles that I had for his birthday party, so we incorporated them for his funeral instead. My sister was the genius that decorated them with white and red ribbon and attached paper that read "messages to Kaleb". The kids were blowing bubbles as Kaleb's casket was lowered into the ground.
     So, it seemed only right to have bubbles being blown to continue the 'messages to Kaleb'. I even have a big container that I take with me to the grave site and blow bubbles for him. He loved bubbles, he thought it was hilarious when they would land on his skin and POP! He might now have been able to run and play with on earth, but when the bubbles blow now I imagine him running, laughing, and playing with them.

Like Kaleb On Facebook To Follow His Legacy 

https://www.facebook.com/KalebCTownsend1028