Happy Mother’s Day! 2021

Especially to all of you out there who wonder if you’re enough.

You are. You always were.

The amount of courage, instinct, soul and love that go into being a mother is something I can only witness, but not truly understand. I’ll continue to watch and to listen well; especially during those moments when my attempts have failed.

Matt

Megan, Gavin is so very lucky to have you as his mother.

One Strong Megan

I almost lost my wife. Last Tuesday Megan stayed home from work. Just before noon I heard my name called from upstairs. Followed by the sound of Megan landing on the bathroom floor. I was downstairs feeding Gavin his lunch.

Megan’s head was in between the toilet and the shower. She was just opening her eyes. Her breathing was highly elevated. She was perspiring heavily. I started asking basic questions. She wasn’t able to focus her eyes. From my point of view, Megan did not know who I was.

I flat lined emotionally. Everything slowed down. I had my cell phone in my hand while asking Megan, “Would you like an ambulance?” I was calling regardless of her answer. She was pregnant. We found out the previous Friday night that the pregnancy was ectopic. Monday morning she had a follow up with her doctor to confirm what the emergency room told her Friday night. Her doctor gave her two shots of metho, told her she might feel cramping, but that she’d be able to go to work on Tuesday.

There I squatted, on Tuesday, pushing the hair from my wife’s face. “Yes, she’s starting to come to. Yes, she know’s who she is. No her color seems alright. (I am color blind.) Hunni, they are telling me to tell you that help is on the way. Ma’am, I need to run downstairs and get my son out of his high chair. He’ll tip it over. Yes, I’ll be fast and I’ll come back up to be with Megan.” Thank God Megan is strong.

The doctor was wrong. The worst possible situation was happening. Megan had suffered a rupture and was bleeding internally.

“Be a good boy, Gavin.” I had just placed Gavin in his nursery area. I ran back upstairs.

“Ma’am I can hear the sirens, I’m going to let you go.”

“Megan, you’re going to be O.K. The ambulance is outside. I’ll be right back. I need to open the door for them. -Yes, please come in. She’s directly up the stairs and straight into the bathroom.- Gavin, Mommy is going to be OK. Please don’t cry. Please don’t cry.”

I called Megan’s sister while the ambulance drove away. ‘Get to the Hospital. Call me as soon as you know if she’ll need surgery.”

Megan was rushed into emergency surgery. She was bleeding so badly they were literally watching her stomach rise. Her blood pressure was becoming close to even. I arrived at the hospital too late. I stood in line to be told where she was. Her sister appeared and told me they couldn’t wait any longer. They didn’t know I was standing in line at the front desk. No cell reception.

The surgeon, Lillian, saved my wife’s life. Lillian was, and is amazing. “Mr. Taggart, she suffered internal damage. The pregnancy ruptured. She lost 1.3 liters of blood. She bled into her abdomen. There was other damage too. Would you like to see the pictures. We had no choice. We believe we did the right thing.”

My wife was dying on our bathroom floor. I am still flat-lined emotionally. Megan finally is home and resting. I am so thankful. I am so thankful. She has a long recovery in front of her. She won’t be returning to work until after Christmas. She can’t lift over ten pounds for six weeks. She can’t lift our son. She can’t rock our son. This has stolen a portion of her life. She has been afraid to sleep for fear of not waking up. When she does sleep she has nightmares. I love my wife. Seeing the hurt this has placed on my wife is something I may not forgive.

Her pregnancy hormones were 31k at her doctors office. The cut off for the medicine administered to my wife is 5k.

This never should have happened.

After Megan’s surgery Megan fainted in the bathroom. Two nurses held her in place until a team of nurses helped bring her back to her bed. I stood watching. Arms folded. Useless. Straight faced. Upset, for what my wife was being forced to endure. Megan was anemic and now needed a blood transfusion. After her surgery we were told they tried to remove all of the blood that had bled into her abdomen, but that it was impossible to do. The remaining blood would slowly be absorbed. However, the process would be painful. Blood is an irritant when placed where it ought not be. Megan struggled to move for a number days.

Family arrived from numerous states to help. Help support us. Help watch Gavin so I could sleep next to Megan at the hospital. This event surrendered us, placed us in a position of hope and sadness. It effected our entire family structure and friends.

Now though, as we near Christmas, we are thankful. I am focusing on the positive. Megan will be home with us. She can read to Gavin. She can sit with Gavin and play with dinosaurs. She can tell him she loves him and give him kisses. But please Gavin, no jumping on Mommy. Lets just be happy that you have your mother. The thought of Gavin growing up without Megan is too devastating for me to process.

The night we brought Megan home, I said to myself ‘my head closed today.’ And the repeating started. There’s ONE person who reads my writing who knows what that means. That was the closest I came. I’m flat emotionally and that’s where I need to be for just a bit longer. Until then we’ll drive after the sun goes down and enjoy showing Gavin the Christmas lights. We’ll drive on the dirt roads and look for dino’s in the forest. We’ll watch Christmas movies. We’ll place Gavin next to Mommy and let the cuddles begin. It’s time to build memories.

I said I almost lost my wife. Megan was too strong to let that happen.

Gavin

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summer maine

Megan and I

 

 

 

 

Little Guy

I tell Gavin I have much to show him. I pick him up and tell him I’ll show him the world. I walk him out of his room and down the hallway into the kitchen, then the living room. I open the sliding glass door. I step onto the deck.  I tell Gavin, ‘This is the beginning of the entire world.’

It's on the tip of his tongue.  His question about the world.
It’s on the tip of his tongue. His question about the world.

I answered his question.  He was pleased. Cheers.
I answered his question. He was pleased. Cheers.

He’s bright and happy. No more fever and all is well.

A letter to Gavin – Our soon to be born little man.

Gavin,

Your due date is August 28th, 2015. Though I’ve guessed that you’ll be born on the 17th. Soon we’ll know. We live on the coast and plan on bringing you to the ocean when it’s safe to do so. It has been a mild summer to this point. Perhaps you’ll see large waves from a storm that’s out to sea.  Winds from storms push waves higher and sometimes too high and they become destructive but are beautiful. Though, nothing is more destructive than man. We’ll talk about that at length.

Over the past few weekends we’ve prepared your room. Your mother picked two colors and the painting is complete. I’m unable to correctly see the light green but the blue is very nice. Your Aunt Shannon helped paint. In fact, she did the largest amount and was a great help. Your aunt lives a few miles from us and has been visiting often. There are a number of people waiting to meet you.

Especially your mother and I. You move more now than ever. We watch you create impressions on your mothers stomach. And yesterday we watched you via an ultra sound screen and you moved nearly non stop. We saw your feet kick and your hands open and close. We said hello. You’re doing great.

The fact is we’ve been waiting for you longer than nine months. We’ve been waiting for years. I’ve been waiting for you longer even than I’ve known your mother. It’s difficult to explain. I was meant to be a father and Megan was meant to be a mother. Finally we will be and it’s thanks to you.

You’re room is nearly finished. All that’s left to do is to place a few items on the walls. I’ll tell you something that you can poke fun at me with later. I didn’t want to paint your room. I thought the existing paint was nice and the color fine. Your mother wasn’t impressed with me. She was right. So now your room is two different colors and it’s what it should be. I was wrong.

In your room is a sliding chair. It’s a bit of a combination between a traditional rocking chair and a slider with a foot stool. The stool also slides. In the morning I take my coffee into your room and I sit on the chair and make it slide. I look at your crib and I imagine you standing there wanting to come out. I will see this soon. I still need to find a fitting Boston Red Sox hat for you. I’d like to see you standing in your crib with that on. And while you look at me I’ll explain to you who the best baseball pitcher in my lifetime is. His name is Pedro Martinez. Yesterday Pedro was elected to the baseball hall of fame.

I coached baseball for a number of years. Pedro was in his prime while I was coaching. For a time, Pedro had nearly perfect mechanics. I would study his pitching motion and try my best to coach his motion to players of his similar build. Though your Uncle Phil was built more like Roger Clemens and I coached him mainly using Roger’s mechanics. Your uncle was much better than I was at baseball. A few colleges wanted him to play for them. But, that’s another story.

Your mother had the baby shower at the Bridge. It’s not an actually bridge. It’s a nice restaurant that overhangs the canal and it’s near a bridge. There’s a room upstairs that can be rented for occasions such as a baby shower. Your great grandmother, Avis, both grandmothers, and all of your aunts were there. Your mother was told that she looked like a pregnant model. I know this because when I arrived at the end of the baby shower an employee told me the story. Below is a picture of your mother during your baby shower. I’ve mentioned before that your mother is beautiful. It’s hard to believe she is nearly 8 months along in this picture.

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Sometimes at night, I write. And if I come out of my office to find your mother she’s almost always in your room. A few nights ago I found her folding your clothes.

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I would not miss this process for anything. From the moment we found out to when your mother starting to show to the first time I saw you move with my own eyes. Sometimes I put my ear to your mothers stomach and listen to you. If I try and focus I believe I’ve heard your heart beat many times.

See you soon, Gavin.