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I sat next Justin’s bed, my hand resting on his, “Hey, baby. It’s been a long week for us. Esther is getting her molars, so she’s been extra cranky. Cassidy had a Father-Daughter dance at school. Ethan took her, but I could tell she was very upset that you couldn’t join us. We really miss you around here, buddy. If you wanted to wake up for us now, any time, we’re more than ready to have you join us again. Justin, we’re about to be parents to two beautiful babies. I don’t know what I’m going to do once they arrive. My mom offered to come stay with us for the first few weeks and I’m thinking about taking her up on it. I wish I could come and sit with you more often, but between the girls and work, I end up going home and going straight to bed.” I cleared my throat as my tears threatened to surface, “Okay, well, let’s keep up with where we left off in The Odyssey, alright?” We read through a few chapter, but when my eyes started to droop, I kissed Justin goodnight.
As I waddled towards the exit, I swung by Dr. Sinclair’s office. His face brightened and he beamed at my growing waistline, “Pregnancy suits you, Sabrina.” I smiled my thanks, Dr. Sinclair and I had grown close over the last three months. He was the kind grandfather I had never experienced growing up. I sat back, putting my feet up for the first time in days, “So any progress this week?” He shrugged before stroking his mustache, “Some progress. There is still signs of brain activity, and he did squeeze the physical therapist’s hand on command. He’s in there, Sabrina. He just needs to heal before he wakes up.” I set my cup down gently, “In my head, I know this, but my heart just wants to shake him until he’s awake. I can’t have him miss the birth of our babies. I’m going to need him there.” Dr. Sinclair nodded his sympathies, but I knew there wasn’t much else he could do. I set my cup down, gave him an appreciative smile, and headed toward the door.
I left the hospital, swinging by the store and finishing the rest of my errands. After picking up Esther from my parents’ house, we went home so I could start on dinner. I heard the school bus pull up as I was in the middle of prepping the pasta. Cassidy raced in, “Look at what we did for art class today! I’m going to give it to Daddy tomorrow. I smiled, “That’s great, Cass. Do you have any homework for this weekend?” She dug through her backpack, “Yes, I have to read another chapter, finish this math page and write a story on someone who I want to be when I’m older.” I set my spoon down, trying to focus on what she was saying, “Okay, who do you think you’ll write about?” she chatted on and on for a few minutes, but I tuned her out as I focused on steadying myself. The room had suddenly begun to sway. Cassidy stopped talking and looked at me, “Mom, are you alright?” I was about to nod when the room went black.
When I woke up, I was being loaded into the back of an ambulance. I heard Cassidy’s frantic cries, and I begged the EMT to let her through. She rushed to my side, tears pouring down her face, “Mama, will you be alright?” I nodded weakly, my head pounding, “Yes, baby, I have to go to the hospital to make sure the babies are okay. Bring me my phone, babydoll, and I’ll call Grandma to have her bring you to the hospital for me, okay?” While she scampered off, one of the EMT’s brought Esther over to see me. I gave her a kiss as she reached for me. When Cassidy returned, I managed to get ahold of my mother, who was fortunately five minutes away, and she promised to rush over. Since I was awake and talking, the paramedics agreed to wait for her to arrive.
It wasn’t long until I was on my way to the hospital, where I was sent straight into the radiology floor to do an emergency ultrasound. As I waited in a recovery room for the results, my mother brought the girls in to see me. Esther curled up against my side and fell asleep. Cassidy, on the other hand, didn’t take her eyes off me. I held her hand, ‘Honey, I’m going to be okay, I’m sorry that you had to see that, but I promise that I’m okay. The doctor will be in soon to tell us what happened.” She nodded her head solemnly so I patted the other side of me. She climbed up, putting a hand on my belly, and laying her head on my shoulder. I kissed her forehead, wishing I could promise a happy ending, but on the inside, I was preparing for the worst.
Dr. Sinclair poked his head in the doorway, “I heard someone was trying to compete for attention, you rascals,” He came close to the edge of my bed, and pulled out my ultrasound results. He looked over at the girls, but I nodded and assured him that they could be here. He quirked his eyebrow at me, “Have you been drinking enough water, Sabrina?” I dipped my head slightly, “Probably not.” He shook his head half-jokingly at me, “That explains the fainting spell earlier. All in all, the babies look good. I’ll keep you over night to rehydrate you, and we’ll release you tomorrow. If this happens again though, I’m ordering you on bedrest for the next three months.” I nodded obediently before asking, “Am I on bedrest while I’m here?” He chuckled, “No, but where you go, so will your iv.”
After my mom took the girls home, I headed down the hall towards Justin’s room. As I sat inside, I whispered to him, “Hey, baby, I know I’m here twice today, but this was not a planned trip. I didn’t drink enough water, today, or yesterday for that matter. I get to have a sleepover with you, buddy,” my voice caught in my throat as I began to sob quietly. I stood up and paced beside his bed, “Baby, I need you to wake up for me. I’m scared to do this alone. I wake up in that big, empty bed of ours and I’m afraid that I’ll never get to hear your laugh again, or see your eyes light up when you talk to our girls. How am I going to live without you? I am trying so hard to be a mom to our girls, but I constantly feel like I’m failing someone.” I began sobbing once more, taking his hand in mine, “Justin, please, please, wake up.” I watched him for a sign of any movement, but nothing happened. Feeling discouraged, I walked back to my room, rolling over onto my side and silently crying into my pillow.