Category:  General Non-Fiction | Posted: February 11, 2012 | Chapters: -Prologue- 1... 

This work has reached the exceptional level
A baby lost

A chapter in the book How Painful is the Best

The worst day of my life

by Jen Gentry

It is not that we do not trust that the Lord wants the best for us but we wonder at how painful the best will be
C.S. Lewis

Prologue to
How Painful Is The Best

It started out as a normal day on a very busy, and very full, skilled unit of a long term care facility. I often tell nurses before I hire them that working here is like being in a pressure cooker and if you can't take the pressure then tell me now, before I hire you. I am a nurse manager in this little pressure cooker. I love my job. I hate my job. There I said it.
I arrived late for work today as I had to take my daughter-in-law Anna to a doctor's appointment. My oldest son Cory and Anna have two young daughters. They are my pride and joy. It was nice to take Anna and my two granddaughters to breakfast at the clubhouse, before the appointment. My granddaughters are four and two. They call the clubhouse "Tiffany's Clubhouse" because my niece, Tiffany, works there. Tiff and her co-workers always make the girls feel special when we go there, and that makes it a special place for all of us. It was also a favorite of my mother's, before she passed. I have many fond memories of being there with her.
Since I arrived late this morning I am running way behind. This is never a good thing when you work in a pressure cooker. As I am trying to plan out the schedule for the coming weekend and help the other nurses prepare for incoming new admits, one of my more seasoned nurses shoves a paper under my nose.
"Just look at these labs on this new patient. We have to send her back to the hospital right away." She is right, the labs do not look good.
"I'll call the doctor and get orders to send her out." I took the paperwork from her and headed into my office to use the phone. I reached the doctor quickly and got the orders I needed. While I was talking to the doctor my cell phone began ringing in my purse. I hung up one phone and answered the other one. It was my husband.
"I am sorry, honey, I can not talk right now. I will have to call you back." I shouted into the phone.
My husband's voice over the phone was broken. I knew something was wrong. I started to tell him whatever it was he would have to take care of it. Then he screamed. "You have to talk to me now! Jarod has backed over Kimberlee with the truck!" Jarod is my twenty-two year old son, Kimberlee is his two-year old niece.
"What do you mean?" I stammered. "Is she alright?"
"The ambulance is here. They will not let Anna go with them. You will have to come and take her to the hospital."
"Derek, is Kimberlee alright?" By this time I am shaking with fear so badly that two of my nurses came running into my office to check on me.
"Jenny, the police are here and the ambulances are here. You have to come home, NOW!"
I hung up the phone and quickly explained the situation to my two nurses, who were rubbing my back and trying to calm me down. I vaguely remember calling my boss to tell her I had to leave and somebody offering to drive me but I left on my own. I tried to talk to Derek again on my cell phone as I got on the turnpike to head home. He was in bad shape and really did not tell me anything. I hit my hazard lights and made the twenty minute drive in ten minutes. I prayed the whole way. "Please dear God. Please dear God." It was all I could say.
As I turned into the road that leads to my cul-de-sac, I met with a scene of organized chaos. Police cars were everywhere. Ambulances were everywhere. The road was blocked off with orange cones and flares. I screamed at the officer blocking my way.
"Where is my grandbaby? Where is my grandbaby?" He shouted to other officers to let me through. One of the officers yelled at me as I passed by to "slow down." I know I gave him a look of pure hatred. God, forgive me.
I drove my car right onto my front lawn. Derek was on his knees, bawling, as a state trooper was trying to help him up. As I opened my door four-year-old Emily jumped into my lap.
"Sissy was under the truck, Nana, and she was bleeding on her cheek then the helicopter took her to the hospital." Then my daughter-in-law, Anna, shoves her face in the car. She is crying and sobbing.
"Please take me to my baby. Oh, Jenny." She begs as she sobs. "Please take me to my daughter now." As I tried to console her, and Emily, my husband yells at me.
"Jenny, check on Jarod. He has lost his mind."
I am in shock at this point. I still do not know what has happened. I still do not know if little Kimberlee is alive or dead. I think I handed Emily off to someone and I helped a sobbing and broken Anna into the car as I told her I needed to check on Jarod and then we would go.
I found my son in the garage sitting on my mother's old rocking chair. I have never seen my youngest son so desolate. His eyes were firetruck red and he was screaming at the top of his lungs "WHY!" I grabbed him and hugged him and his pregnant wife in each arm and I think I told him that we were going to be alright and that I would call him when I got to the hospital. I looked my son in the eye and said that I really needed him to keep it together for his father. He nodded his head 'yes' at me and I ran and got back in my car. Anna was hugging herself and rocking back and forth as she sobbed in the passenger seat.
The longest drive of my life began with an officer asking me if I was OK to drive. I told him "yes" and drove out of my neighborhood. I again hit my hazard lights as I sped onto the highway.
A motorcycle cop got behind me and flashed his lights at me. I thought he knew where I was going and was trying to help me. He pulled me over. I yelled at him that I needed to get to the hospital and he got in front of me and took me to the wrong hospital. He and I had a few not so nice words in front of the wrong emergency room. When he finally understood what I was trying to tell him he yelled at me to slow down. I yelled back at him "NO!" The officer threw his hands up in the air and stomped off. God, forgive me again.
Anna continued to sob as I found my way back onto the highway. It was now rush hour traffic. I tried to ask Anna if Kimberlee was breathing when the life-flight left with her. She stated "They told me she was barely breathing."
This gave me some hope. I thought surely she will be OK then. She was not dead.
We finally made it to the busiest emergency room in town. I did not look for a place to park. I just drove up to the ambulance doors and jumped out of the car. I told Anna to get off her cell phone and come with me. She yelled back at me that she was talking to her family and that I could not tell her to get off the phone. God, forgive me again.
We were met at the door by a chaplain. Both of us cried out "No!" over and over. The chaplain tried desperately to herd us into a side room. We both resisted and kept screaming at him. Finally I looked into the man's eyes and I just knew. I looked over at Anna and the chaplain and I shoved her into the private room away from the crowd of people gaping at us in the waiting room.
We both got very quiet as we stared at the man in disbelief.
"I am so sorry." That was all he said.
I doubled over in agony. In the back of my head somewhere I heard Anna screaming. "Not my baby! Not my baby!"
God, forgive me again. I could not help her as my belly rolled out a guttural, groaning scream that left me too weak to stand.


I am using this as a journal to help me work through this. It is a day by day account. Not really for publishing just for therapy.
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