It has been three years since Mason was born and I still wonder what he would be like at this age. We know for sure he was going to have significant medical needs but we didn't care. WE knew the hospital bill would be sky high but that's why we have insurance. We knew we would love Mason and we DO with all of our very souls. I did not understand the purpose of Mason entering our lives only to leave so soon but now I do. It was all part of God's plan. His plan to set us on a course that has brought 5 more beautiful children with special needs into our family and soon hopefully 2 more. God has a purpose for our family and my son Mason played the most important role in God's plan. How amazing and wonderful is that?! So when Carrington was so very sick, her color was changing to gray as we flew across that ocean, as she laid so silent and limp in my arms I prayed that her brother would just be with her and tell her to hold on because Mommy and Daddy were going to take care of her. I listened as the doctors told me just how severe Carrington's health was and all I could see, hear, feel, and remember was that day when our Mason left us. Today Carrington is a true living miracle of our God! When I look at her I see her brother. I know Mason loves his big sister and I truly believe Mason is Carrington's little angel that God sent to take care of her. So when I am asked why? Why are we adopting again? Why are we asking for donations to bring home 2 more children with special needs? I respond with a very simple answer: because we told God that we accept His calling to open our hearts and homes to orphans with special needs. How that happens is up to God and God alone. Not me or Brian but GOD! So many many days I just look up to Heaven and tell God I just want my Mason back and then I feel a little tug on my heart and I know my son just gave his mommy a hug. Thank you Lord for believing in me enough to bless me with each and every one of my children for I know they are Yours and You have entrusted them to me while here on Earth.
Monday, October 31, 2011
Mason 's Story
I didn't even realize as I was typing the post entitled Rough Days that I was sharing about Mason and probably had not even shared who our little Mason is. I apologize and appreciate you all asking. Mason is our youngest son and instead of snuggling in my arms he is busy playing in the greatest of all playgrounds-HEAVEN! His story started on October 27, 2008 when he was born to his birth mom at only 27 weeks gestation and weighing only 1lb and 07oz. We would learn of this precious little life via our home school group's emails. One Friday after noon we called to see how we could pray for this little guy whose birth mom was not of the mind to be able to care for him and who had terminated her rights as his mother. In less than 72 hours, in no other way except God's way, we were selected out of thousand calls to become this little man's parents. At this time we were told Mason had a very rare and deadly disease known as acinetobactor and more than likely would not live the next few hours. We began a 3 week journey to love on this very very little and sick baby. At this time he had no name and we chose Mason Quaid Burman. Little Mason rallied and his health started on the road to healing. He would know when his momma would come visit. Each day I would journey to the hospital 3 times in between my full time job and foster parenting. Soon doctors were taking him off of all the medicines he was on, began giving him donor breast milk, and we started talking about beginning to wean him slowly off of the jet ventilator that was helping him breathe. I could spend a lifetime writing about all of the emotions and intensity of love that was growing within my heart during this time. I never focused on the fact that Mason was not of my womb. How could I? He would take his two little hands to wrap around my one finger each night as I would read stories to him. I had his room totally decorated and all the nurses and staff in the NICU would come by to see the latest card or decoration we would put up. IT was getting close to Christmas which is my absolutely favorite time of the year so I picked out a little tree for his room, found all of the decorations, and was picking out his Christmas music. I could not wait for my boy to hear the huge collection of Christmas music his mommy had just waiting to be played. I stopped by for my visit on Thanksgiving to give some loving to my boy and to tell him Mommy was going to tell Santa all the fun things he would like for his very first Christmas. Later that night I was one of the crazy people who was out doing Christmas shopping for her family when I got the call that Mason took a turn for the worse and now had two more illnesses the doctors did not think he could beat. That weekend would be a time of stress and heartache for our family. But it seemed Mason was going to prove everyone wrong and would get better. That Sunday morning Brian and I went to breakfast before going to visit our son and when we walked around the corner to Mason's hospital room everything went into hyperslow mode as I looked at a whole group of grim faced doctors standing outside of Mason's room. I would be taken to another room and asked to make a decision no parent should ever have to make: when would we make the decision to remove Mason from life support. I can honestly share with you that there has been nothing else in my whole life that cut into my very heart and soul like that moment on that Sunday morning. Choose if my son is to live? Why God? Why would You want me to be Mason's mommy and then take him back so soon? I can tell you I was never angry at God. I just could NOT understand His plan or purpose. Mason was hooked up to so many machines and medicines going into his little body. The closest I ever got to holding our little man was when the nurses would let me change his little tushie! I did everything to learn how to take care of a baby who weighed less than a box of cereal. I never missed a visit. I always ALWAYS scrubbed in like we were shown so as not to bring any disease into him. WHY!! I am his mommy and I can't take care of this disease which is robbing my son of his life. The nurses and doctors allowed me to hold my son for the first time ever. That was a feat that took over 5 nurses and 15 minutes just to lay him in his mommy's arms. I had just finished making a quilt for his isolette that was denim and red and would go in his and his big brother Ethan's room. So they laid him in my arms and I held Mason for a glorious 20 minutes before we laid him back in his bed. There were a stream of people coming in to offer support and comfort but I cannot say that I recall anyone because my mind and heart was begging God to please not take my son. At one point that day I asked a nurse to get me a pacifier so my son could know what it was to suck on one. DOn't know why that was important but it was. Not too long after all that it was obvious Mason could not continue to battle this illness and his little body was getting tired. I leaned over to Mason and whispered in his ear it was okay and that he didn't have to fight anymore. He could go on to Heaven and I would see him there one day. We told the nurses and doctors that we did not want our son to go to Heaven on a machine and we wanted to remove the ventilator. I sat down to prepare my arms to hold my son for the very last time. Mason had never know the touch of human skin as he had always been touched by latex gloves. It was at that moment I removed my shirt as they placed Mason in my arms. I had to know my son was in no pain and was reassured that he was not. The nurse removed Mason's ventilator and I watched as my son took his two and only two breaths. Then I scooped him up and promptly put him to my chest so he would feel his Mommy without any gloves or gowns between us. I was told I would only have about 10 minutes before he would pass but God had other plans. Yes, I was crying as my heart was being torn to pieces. I looked up at Brian and said "our son will never know Christmas music." All of a sudden out of the dark the lyrics to Silent Night were heard and the first words we heard were "sleep in Heavenly peace." Mason's nurse had gone to the computer and found Christmas music to play. I am a terrible singer but that night I sang my heart out to our son. The doctor came in at about the 10 minute mark to pronounce Mason as gone but he wasn't and would not be for another 2 hours and 10 minutes. My son laid on my chest, rocked in the chair, and listened to his mommy sing to him for 2 hours longer than the doctors thought he would. Finally I felt what can only be described as a butterfly fluttering on my chest and I drew Mason away and I knew. I knew my son went on to Heaven. I would give my son his first bath and dress him in the outfit I had picked our for him to come home in. My son was so handsome! Yes, I watched all day as his color changed to gray and his brain activity was slowing but I never gave up nor ran away even when I felt like the pain was going to kill me. Mason's service was led by so many of my husband's fellow sheriff deputies and he would ride home in one of his daddy's patrol cars. What an amazing memory I will have of that day.