As I look back now, I can definitely see how God was working behind the scenes throughout the whole ordeal with our little premature twin babies – in spite of my sometimes belligerent and ungrateful attitude. Even though I still had not come to a real and true knowledge of who God was, God knew me, and loved me enough to guide and direct Gary and myself to the wonderful fragile care house that little Bryan’s primary care physician recommended at Children’s Hospital.
We arrived at the place to discover a beautiful large home in a very peaceful setting. When we walked in we were greeted warmly by the staff who, after we had explained why we were there, lovingly gave us a complete tour of the facility and explained how they operated. They knew what their roles were – to watch and care for the precious children living with them, giving them all the love they needed until the time came for them to die…
Inside was just as tastefully and beautifully decorated as the outside. There were many different rooms, put together to create a home-like setting to the age group of the children who were living there. They showed us a large room where little Bryan would spend his days, along with other babies in his age range. It had all the equipment he needed, just like at the hospital, yet it was also set up just like a nursery that you would have in your home.
Then they showed us to a couple large “family living areas.” These areas were set up similar to a hotel room, but again were decorated more like what you would have at home. They had a small kitchen area, beds, and comfortable couches and chairs.
The staff told us that the way they operate was that when the nursing staff feel that the time is getting close for a child to pass away they call the family, who are invited to come and spend the last day or night with their child in one of the modified living areas. Gary and I both left feeling very comfortable with the home, so we made arrangements for our precious little Bryan to be transferred.
We were there when little Bryan arrived in the ambulance, and were allowed to be in the room as the loving staff got him settled in his own little crib. After we said our good-byes, we went home and tried to live life as normally as we could as we waited for the phone to ring.
When the call came a little over a week later, since it was evening we loaded clothes in our suitcase for the whole family to spend the night. They provided an extra little bed for Matthew to sleep in, and a cute little crib for Jeffrey.
We got Matthew and Jeffrey settled in for the night, and either Gary or I ended up holding and cuddling with little Bryan as we waited for him to pass into the arms of Jesus. He really looked peaceful. Did he know we were holding him, and how much we loved him?
A couple hours later it happened. Little Bryan breathed one last breath and then stopped. It was not a struggle, nor was it a gasp, just a soft breath.
But an amazing thing happened. Right at the very moment when Bryan took his last breath – before Gary or I had realized it – both Matthew and Jeffrey awoke in their beds, Matthew sitting up and looking straight over at us. Somehow they had both known their little brother was now gone.
After we had finished our weeping, the nurse came and sat with us, giving us comfort and love. We found out later that this particular fragile care house was run by a Christian family.
Since little Bryan had always looked so weak and frail, Gary and I decided to have him cremated. We purchased a cute little urn in which to place his ashes. We held a memorial service at our church, and it was so incredibly awesome to have our church family gather around us in love and support. I was very thankful that God had taken our little boy home so soon, and that we did not have to wait for months, watching him wither away…