Our Little Warrior Owen

This blog is dedicated to our little sunshine angel Owen. We named him Owen because it means little warrior and we knew he would have to be with two older brothers. He was our little sunshine and his heart stopped beating unexpectedly on his 5 month birthday. We are devastated by the loss of our little guy. Hopefully, this blog will give readers a sense of what a beautiful spirit he was, how he completed our family and will help to keep his memory alive. We hope this gives light into our grieving process and can help other families that suffer a similar tragic loss.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A year and answers - finally

Dear Owen,

So it's been a year.  I meant to try and write closer to the actual date of July 12, 2013 but the past few days and weeks have been more than difficult.  

July 11 and 12 this year were so difficult to say the least.  I kept reliving everything I did with you on the 11th.  It was miserable.  I could barely breathe.  I felt so guilty holding Reilly remembering holding you last year.  I would give my own life to have you back.  

We had talked about going to the beach on the 12th because you loved it and we had so many fond memories of going with you.  Unfortunately it turned out to be a rainy day.  Heaven was crying.  We went to NYC instead and attended a mass that was said in your honor.  Hearing your name read was surreal.  Owen Michael O'Brien.  Really?!? My son is dead!?!? How did this all happen.

I cried in church as I fed your sister.  I felt your presence though.  We then had lunch and I just cried and cried.  We sat in almost 4 hours of insane traffic and rain getting home.  You know how much I hate traffic so that just added to the pain of the day.  We got back so late we couldn't go to visit your gravesite plus it was pouring rain.

We watched your video and it was so painful.  I couldn't hold your sister during it because I felt I needed to devote all of my attention to you.  You are still my son and I still have to mother you even though your body is no longer with us.  I feel bad cuz since your sister arrived I haven't had as much time for you and ok sorry.  It pains me.  Watching your video was so hard.  It reminded me of how real, how alive and how happy you and I were.  Connor cried with us and then proceeded to channel his pain by drawing pictures of you and him and writing your name and how much he loved you.

A few weeks after the 12th we finally got a firm answer in regards to your autopsy. The medical examiner had said you passed away from aortic coarctation but that didn't make sense since you had been screened by a cardiologist.  Well after having many many experts review your case, they have ruled that the medical examiner was wrong and there is no clear cause of death so it's a clear case of SIDS.  I'm glad in a sense to know that a doctor didn't miss a diagnosis that could have saved you but I'm sad because I don't have someone to blame. Having someone to blame allowed me to channel my anger and pain at someone.  I just wish we all knew why SIDS happened.  Jim was relieved with this news but honestly now I'm just so scared for Reilly since there isn't a clear cause of SIDS.  We did everything to prevent SIDS with you but you still died.

Sorry it has taken me so long to write.  My heart is with you every second of every day.  Wish you were walking here now.  Miss you more than ever my sweet angel.

Your one and only mom

Thursday, July 11, 2013

A not so little rainbow

Dear Owen,

I've been meaning to write you for awhile but I've been super busy lately.  I'm sorry.  As you know your little SISTER arrived on Father's Day.  What a gift.  Thank you.
Reilly Ann 

Born Sunday June 16th, 2013 at 9:20pm
Daddy's first girl arrived on Father's Day
9 lbs 14 oz
22.5 inches
Our biggest baby yet! 

We selected Reilly because it means valiant/courageous and Ann because it means gracious.  Reilly is Jim's grandmother's maiden name and Ann is the middle name of Carla, both grandmothers and influential aunts on both sides of our family.

Let me tell you Owen, I know you were with us when Reilly was born.  I had a total emotional breakdown half way through labor.  I completely lost it and just balled balled balled for you.  Thank goodness my midwife Aimee was there and totally understood what we were goin through.  She was so supportive.  She reminded me that you were there with us and I felt your presence.  You looked after both Reilly and I.  Thank you for being there and helping your sister to arrive safely.  
It is understood that the beauty of a rainbow does not negate the ravages of any storm. When a RAINBOW appears, it does not mean that the storm never happened or that we are not still dealing with its aftermath. It means that something beautiful and full of light has appeared in the midst of the darkness and clouds. Storm clouds may still hover, but the rainbow provides a counterbalance of color, energy and hope.
We are so filled with joy but its been a struggle too these last three weeks.  Owen, we miss you more than ever.  The dynamics of our family have changed.  No longer can we say the boys, we have to say the kids.  You should be here to enjoy your sister.  It's been a struggle to take family photos because there is the constant reminder that our family isn't complete.  You should be here walking around, sharing in this joy with us.  Having a baby around reminds me so much of my time with you.  It's all so fresh.  God I miss you.  Having Reilly has put me into a new stage of grief.  

I wish I would have wrote sooner and I'm sorry.  Today marks the anniversary of my last day with you.  I can't believe it's been a year. What I would give to go back a year from today and never ever put you down to bed.  

I love you more than you ever know.  

Your one and only mom

Your little sister...