Saturday, November 15, 2008

Babies R Us and Rainbows

I realize the title of this blog may seem a bit strange but those two things were markers of my day.

First let me go back a bit….
The first time Jeremy and I entered Babies R Us was shortly after discovering we were pregnant with Carter (our oldest). We walked in and our jaws dropped. A store packed with anything and everything a baby could need and they convinced you that your baby needed every bit of it. I loved that store, registering for things, picking out exactly what I wanted, oh, I mean what the baby needed.

Brayden, being our third boy, I rarely venture into that megastore. To be honest, my experience there with Brayden leaves me with a heavy heart.

Shortly after Brayden was diagnosed (more or less, in many, many terms); we left a doctor’s appointment and had a few minutes to spare. I pulled into the parking lot of Babies R Us. I sat in the car for what seemed like hours, really was only several minutes, and watched moms hurry in and out of the store. I was angry and envious, here I was with my new baby dealing with gigantic medical concerns and they were fussing about which diaper was best for their precious one’s bottom. I really wanted to roll down the window and yell “If you only knew!” Instead, I sat in the car and cried.

Since that day I have been to Babies R Us only a few times.

Today, I went.

I pulled into the front handicap parking space, pulled out Brayden’s KidKart and feeding pump, hooked him up and headed in. I was there to look for a new pac-n-play since Brayden had done some irreparable damage to the previous one from a large vomit incident. Just walking in the door, one couple stared, stared hard but not making eye contact with me. Now I am used to people looking a bit but walking into the baby world people are curious not just about Brayden but everyone around them. What stroller do they have? What cute shoes! Why did they pick that bath tub? Where did they find that? So on and so on.

I proceeded towards the the pac-n-play displays. I walked past tons of baby items that Brayden could never use (but for the most part I am emotionally past that). Then a lady ran into Brayden’s KidKart with her shopping cart. She said “Sorry.” Then glanced down at Brayden’s contraption and looked back up at me. “Oh, Oh, I am so sorry,” seemingly extra apologetic for not just running to my child but a handicap child. No harm no foul. We went on. Then another pregnant momma passed by looking down at Brayden with such a look of concern I wondered if she might say something, then glanced at me with a pitiful smile.

I did not find a pac-n-play with a price I was hoping for so I headed towards the clearance section, my favorite place in any store. A sweet woman bent down, smiled, waved and waved at Brayden. He had no response. I did not have the energy to tell her that he could not see her. I appreciated her effort but no dice. I went on to the clothing section to look for buttoned one piece pajamas. Brayden needs the buttons so we can use his feeding tube through the night. But I found no pajamas.

At one point, I felt like the store was spinning, kind of like the storm in the Wizard of Oz, with mommies and daddies all around holding their healthy, developmentally on track babies. And I was standing in the middle with my nineteen month old who is developmentally close to a 3 month old and in his wheelchair. I was in the middle of the swirling storm.

I bought Brayden a little toy that giggled thinking he might giggle with it in one way or another and we left.

One more store and then I headed home. I could see up ahead a gigantic storm but the air was completely still. I had to go right toward the storm to get home. I drove a few miles and was then hammered with rain. Rain so hard you could barely hear a thing or see the car in front of you. It stopped raining a few minutes before I arrived home (it is a long trek from Waterford to the nearest Babies R Us).

I was standing in the kitchen asking Carter how his day was and I looked out the window towards our barn. There it was; a big beautiful rainbow. Carter and I ran out to the deck to marvel at the colors in the sky. I grabbed by camera. The picture does not do it justice.

I just stood there and thought: A beautiful rainbow as a result of a storm. There is a rainbow in this storm, my storm.

I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Gen 9:13 NIV

6 comments:

Christine said...

I just love how you put things. It is often how I feel, but can't put into serious words, and I often end up trying to make it funny...hence my blog....but I sincerely just love how you write with such passion and honesty about your situation with Braydon

the deKorne family said...

hope i'm not over commenting here...but you are such a good writer! so articulate and wise. i'm looking forward to seeing you july 11th! :)

Courtney said...

beautiful, carrie! you ARE so good with words...and with Brayden.

Carrie said...

Dear Carrie,
Thank you for your story about Babies 'R Us. I have been feeling that same way, but for me it has been at church. I know it's so hard; What a beautiful rainbow! God does give us these in the middle of our storms, doesn't he? :)
Carrie Holt

neverdullwithkids said...

I saw this rainbow- it was NEON!! Awesome reminder of God in the sky:) I have a spare pack n play if you want it. Brayden can destroy it, we do not need it. It is not fancy, just let me know!

Beth Demorest said...

God has blessed you with such a beautiful gift of writing!I pray that you will experience many rainbows as you share your life and experiences with others this week. We love you guys.