“They were in a rush, trying to get their son to the ER as fast as possible. When they finally got there, their little baby’s evaluation came out a lot faster than they were expecting it to, but the news was worse than anything they ever saw coming. She sat close to her husband, holding his hand tightly as they looked up at the doctor.
They listened closely as he explained what was happening to their little boy, but as she tried her best to pay attention to what he was saying, all she could hear was a loud buzzing inside of her head because of how worried she was.
Taylor and Jeff were over the moon when they welcomed their firstborn, Brian, into the world. They couldn’t be more excited about their family finally growing. They tried to get pregnant for over a year before they finally conceived Brian. They were so grateful that it finally happened. Soon enough, Brian was born, and it made for a happy occasion, but soon it would turn tearful.
Taylor and Jeff were set on having a big family since before their marriage. They’d always discussed having multiple children that would fill the home. They had decided together that they wanted to have five to six children, despite the prospect presenting a chaotic reality. They were already ready to face it head-on.
They were married for a year when Taylor and Jeff fell pregnant with their first child. He was the most gorgeous boy they had ever seen, and Brian was their everything. He was the perfect son, active, and he always had a bright smile on his face. He had the intelligence and baby charm to make any parent proud. But soon, everything would change for them.
One bright and sunny Sunday afternoon, it happened. Jeff was working on a passion project downstairs while Taylor was spending time with Brian in their bedroom. Brian had been very active that day, and Taylor knew that she had to put him down for a nap; otherwise, he would be cranky by nighttime.
She fed him and bathed him before setting him down on her bed. She turned away for one second, and that was when it happened. She had turned away for one second, looking for a diaper, when she heard a soft thud on the carpet. She turned around and found Brian on the floor. He had a look of confusion on his face before he burst into loud sobs. Taylor ran towards him, checking if he’d hit his head. She rubbed the bump while lulling Brian until he stopped crying. But just then, she did the worst thing she could have done at the moment. She comforted him until he stopped crying and began smiling and cooing.
Jeff ran up the stairs to see what was happening, and she quickly explained the situation. They put Brian to sleep, and against her better judgment, Taylor told herself that her baby boy was okay. But if only she knew what had happened. Later that night, she woke up to the sound of Brian letting out a loud shriek.
She jumped up from bed and ran to his crib, finding him crying bitterly. The bump on his head was now bigger than before. Taylor called Jeff, who came running in. He looked down at Brian and dashed for their coats and phones. What if they were too late? They rushed to get their son to the emergency room as fast as possible.
Their baby’s evaluation came out sooner than they expected, but the news was worse than they ever could have imagined. She sat close to her husband as they looked up at the doctor, listening closely as he explained what was happening to their angel.
But as much as she was trying to pay attention to what he was saying, all she could hear was a loud buzzing inside her head because of how worried she was. She was hoping that the doctor would say that his injury was just a simple bump and that he would be fine, but the news was far worse than that. The doctor looked down at the MRI report in his hands. Brian fractured his skull and has bled half of his entire blood volume into his brain, he said. Although he continued speaking, the pain within Taylor muted everything around her.
The days after the visit to the hospital were the worst for Taylor and Jeff. They’d worked so hard to build everything they had, and with Brian, all the struggle had felt worthwhile. He was the best thing in their life, and now they weren’t sure if he would be all right. They checked Brian into the hospital before leaving, and with each second that passed, the grueling pain of not being by his side ate them alive.
A week passed with Brian still in the hospital. Taylor and Jeff would spend as much time with him, only leaving for brief showers and work. The reality was that their son’s condition kept them on edge. The hospital was still running its scans and discerning the best treatment path for Brian, but each time Taylor would ask if her son would be fine, they gave the worst answer: “We’re doing everything we can,” the doctors said. But these words only made the dread coursing through Taylor’s veins double.
As the final report on Brian’s health neared, she wasn’t sure if her baby would make it. She wasn’t sure if he’d be paralyzed either physically or mentally. She broke down while considering all these possibilities. As a mom, what could she do? Every minute that passed was the most agonizing weight.
For Jeff and Taylor’s life, sheer played every scenario over and over in her head like a broken record. The “what if” questions in her mind were endless. What if she never turned her back? What if she reached Brian earlier? These questions ran through her mind again and again, but they were futile. All that Taylor knew for now was that Brian had been semi-stabilized. None of the questions could change the outcome now.
She tried her best to stay positive, but any parent in that position will understand that it’s virtually impossible not to dwell. Even though they weren’t the spiritual type, Taylor and Jeff began praying while the doctors kept working on Brian.
What made the situation more heartbreaking was the fact that after all the dreams they had of their big family, Brian was the first. He represented the beginning of making that dream a reality. Even in their wildest dreams, they could never have imagined a son more perfect than the one they had. Now they were forced to consider the worst possibilities.
The days passed by mercilessly, and Brian remained in the same state. Taylor never knew that a human being was capable of holding as many tears as she cried. Her emotions swayed from hopeful and optimistic to hopeless and lost on a daily basis. As the hours and days passed, soon an even worse emotion took over.
Taylor cried until her eyes could hold no more tears. Her mind felt like it was on the brink of insanity on more than one occasion. Eventually, perhaps as a defense mechanism, she began feeling numb. After all the pain, heartache, stress, and fear, this feeling was somehow worse. Feeling numb made Taylor feel like a monster.
She was like a cold, unfeeling robot at times, going through the hours with a kind of frightening detachment. She felt like a zombie at times, dead to the world and just existing in an emotionless void, waiting for the news. At times, she felt like she needed to snap out of it but was terrified to do so.
Taylor knew that if she allowed the grim emotions back, she risked opening the floodgates and was afraid of being consumed by it all again. In her desperation, caught between being afraid to feel too much and her guilt at feeling too little, she turned to another source for comfort. Jeff had been dealing with his grief in a different way. Taylor barely saw him cry, and he seemed to be handling things better.
Taylor didn’t know if this was a good thing or not. Soon she began to wonder what was going through Jeff’s mind. Where still, she had no idea how to feel about him or if she could lean on him for support. It was a horrible truth about the situation. Taylor and Jeff had been a normal, happy couple. They’d finally begun building their lives together. Now their dreams were in tatters. Their joint grief was already crippling.
Taylor didn’t want to admit it, but she also felt angry inside. There were times when she couldn’t even stand the sight of Jeff. Taylor had heard people speak of the famous stages of grief. She had never given it much thought because she never pictured herself ever being in a state of grief like this. Looking at Jeff, there were moments when she envied how he seemed to be handling things. On the other hand, she wondered if he was just staying strong. Taylor knew that Jeff loved his son every bit as much as she did. She knew, like her, he was heartbroken inside, whether he showed it or not.
As the days wore on, and Jeff kept up his stoicism, Taylor also began to worry for another reason she hadn’t considered the feeling until now but was now afraid it might be true. Since Brian had been in Taylor’s care at the time, she worried that Jeff may blame her for what happened.
She struggled with this feeling for a while, and when she could no longer take not knowing, she summoned up her last reserves of courage. Tentatively, she approached him to ask him if it was true. To Taylor’s relief, Jeff assured her that he didn’t blame her for any of this. He knew how much she loved their boy and would never knowingly hurt him. He supported her and told her that they needed to be strong together.
It broke the two of them to see their little boy hooked up to devices and in a breathing apparatus day after day. Finally, the doctor came forward and revealed that the test results were rainy.
Brian’s brain had suffered severe trauma, and it was unclear what the future held. After helping Taylor and Jeff get acclimated to his treatment regimen, the hospital discharged Brian. They included a new diet, physical therapy, and several activities that would help his mind stay active. The couple were and did all they could, but ultimately, it was tragically too late. Although Taylor and Jeff, with the help of their families, did all they could to help their beloved son recover, he’d sadly succumb to his condition.
Taylor knew what she needed to do. Between instances of feeling like she was losing her mind, Taylor eventually searched for ways to cope and live with what had happened. She found a slight silver lining when she realized she could help others broken by the loss of her son. Taylor knew she had to share her story.
By doing so, she hoped that more parents out there realized how quickly a moment of inattention could lead to tragedy. Her hope was that if their experience could help prevent another family from experiencing the same horror, Brian’s short life could not have been so completely in vain. Her story gained traction on social media, and many people came to grieve with her family.
With time, the pain of losing Brian would let off, although she still missed him with each passing second. Taylor and Jeff did eventually go on to have other children, and the big family they always talked about was still a possibility. However, it would always remain tainted in a way. Try as they might, both knew they’d never forget the little angel who was there first.