Sunday, April 6, 2008

Lullabies for a Peaceful Rest

The night I brought Allie home from the hospital, I put a CD in my alarm clock/CD player to rock her to bed. I remember holding my newborn, my beautiful little gift, and gently rocking to the music. She listened to it every night. She spent three nights in the PICU without the CD before I sent someone to our home to get the CD player. That night, she slept much more peacefully.



The nurses came to love the soothing music. Several even went and purchased it to have for their own children. When the music would start in the evening, Allie's breathing would calm, her body would relax, and she would easily fall asleep. The night Allie died, we were surrounded by the sounds of the CD. It brought us comfort and peace to be with something Allie loved so much. When guests entered her memorial service, they immediately heard the sounds of Allie's lullaby CD.



I haven't listened to that CD much since her death. However, it has remained in it's same location, safely in my CD/alarm clock. The case is on Maggie's bookshelf (once Allie's), but the CD sits still in its place where it last played for Allie. When Maggie was born, I tried to play it for her. She likes silence to go to sleep. She doesn't want any noise whatsoever. So it was not for her.



Last night, when I was alone in bed, something drew my hand towards the play button. I don't know where the impulse came from,but I just had to hear those songs. I laid in the dark as the piano began to play "I Can Only Imagine." It was immediate. It took me back so quickly. Instead of being in my dark bedroom, I was immediately taken back to room 1203. I could hear the beeping of her IVs and the sounds of her pulse/ox monitor erroring because she was moving around too much.



I stayed in my bed and listened to the entire CD. I was surprised how I remembered all the words. It's been more than four years since I first listened to that CD. And yet, last night, it was like it was yesterday. Andrew was in the other room watching TV, so I was alone in the room with my thoughts. The entire time, I thought of my Allie. Her life, her legacy, and the loved ones she left behind. With the last few weeks being intense at work to have both Heroes and Handbags events in Dallas and Houston, Allie has been heavier on my heart than even normal days. Maybe it was the desire to be even closer to her last night that made me play the CD.



It wasn't until final song on the CD, my favorite of all of them, that I allowed the tears to flow. I can't tell you how many times I sang that song with Allie. I can't tell you how many times I comforted her pains by gently rocking with her to that music. But I can tell you that they all rushed back to me last night. I felt the weight of her body on my chest as if she was actually there. And all I wanted to do was gently place my face up against hers like I would when she was sick.



It might be a long time before I listen to the songs again. But between now and then, I know I will be thinking of my sweet girl many times.

32 comments:

BethanyWD said...

What a lovely story about remembering Allie. Thanks for sharing it with us.

tricia said...

thanks for sharing those memories.sleep well

Zhohn said...

Your Allie will forever hold a special place in my heart. Her site was the first (CB/cancer) site that I visited four years ago. Today, because of your sweet Allie, I am involved in Pediatric Cancer Awareness & Fundraising.
Thank you for sharing her with us and continuing to share your family.
I hope you have a wonderful week.

Jen @ One Moms World said...

What an inspirational post Jenny! I have been following your story since the beginning and because of Allie's legacy it is that I have become more aware and more involved in childhood c. Thanks for sharing this with us.

robinandamelia said...

What a beautiful post.

Shannon said...

Oh Jenny,

I can see how the last few weeks have made you yearn for your Allie even more. My babies were silent sleepers too, even though I had prepared myself with ALL of the Disney lullaby CDs. Thank you for sharing the story, funny how something like leaving the cd in the same place for four years is comforting somehow?!? I have a few things like that from my mother that haven't moved in seven years.

The Nanny said...

Jenny, that was beautiful. I have tears in my eyes. I'm the same as Zhohn--Allie's was the first site I started to follow after seeing her story in the DMN. She will always stay with me.

The Carstens Clan said...

Thank you for sharing. I too have found myself deep in volunteering for LLS thanks to your sweet Allie!

Tina

Melissa said...

well Jenny, crying wasn't what I had on the schedule for this morning! :-) but that was beautiful.

LisaWV said...

Oh, Jenny. tears tears tears tears here, thinking of what you went through, what Allie went through. I think of her every time I see anything with a giraffe on it. Hugs to you! I'm glad you have these moments of reconnection with her, and that you still share them with all of us who loved her from afar.

Adrianne said...

Jenny. Thank you again for your words. I never know what I am going to find when I come to your site and it is always the thing I need!

Kelly said...

Such a beautiful story. Like a few other posters, Allie's site was the first CB site I found and since then I've found so many others. She was such a beautiful little girl and now a beautiful angel. Even though I've never met you, your family, and your story, is special to me.

Staci Cook said...

I remember sitting in the audience before Allie's funeral, and you came out to speak to one of the church ladies. I couldn't hear what you were saying, but it was during that conversation that they started playing that cd. You abruptly stopped your conversation with the church lady, put your hand over your mouth, and then you left the room. That was my first time to hear "I Can Only Imagine." I was really early to the funeral, so I heard the cd play a few times before the service started. I fell in love with the song - I imagined that the song was you saying those words to Allie - about what it would be like when you finally saw her in heaven. Now that I've downloaded the song to my iPod, I know what the true meaning of the song is, but I still tear up when I hear it. Your loss of Allie is still painful for me. When I think about it, it brings me back to my terrible moments as well. I often struggle with the fact that we were lucky and you were not. How is that fair? It most certainly isn't fair at all.

Anyway, I just wanted you to know that. I don't remember if I ever told you all of that before.

I'm going through some tough stuff with Jamison right now, and I started a blog about it. It's not cancer, of course, but it's a big deal to us. www.jamisonsjourney.blogspot.com Check it out when you have time. Miss you!

Angie said...

I bought the cd when you were posting about it when Allie was sick. I've shared it with countless new moms since. It's beautiful. Thank you for sharing :) I was cda44 (Angie) on the boards we frequented back then, and I've tried to keep up with you since scotthousehold.com closed. I appreciate being able to still "be a part" of your life.

Oh, and we're going through that whole Weight Watchers thing together, too. But that's another entry, isn't it? LOL!

Angie

Sugar Photography said...

tears. No words.

M Yeager said...

Thinking about you as always Jenny! (((HUGS)))

Love,
Manisha Yeager

Jin said...

just want to share with you...it was when i read in your blog about that CD being Allie's favorite when she was still alive...and i remember reading about the CD being played in her last moment on earth before she passed...that i came to know the beautiful song, "i can only imagine"...how God has touched me so deeply with the lyrics and brought me a little baby steps back to His presence when I have been away for so long...i bought a copy of that CD...have been playing it every night for my two kiddos until now...it is still playing every night...

wenweav said...

Oh Jenny. Another loyal reader with tears here. You definitely have such a way with words. You should write that book! I have followed your story for years (a fellow bbc member here). I heard about your story there and have followed your courageous journey since before Allie left "us".

You are an amazing woman and I admire you! By the way, I would love the name of that cd. I am done having children but would love the cd. Can you post the name?

Thanks for allowing us to be a part of your "life". You are a big part of mine!
Big hugs!

Mum's The Word said...

Thank you for sharing such a tender moment with us, Jenny. I honestly don't know how you do it. I have my two daughters with me; you are so strong. I know you have days where you feel as though you can't go on, yet somehow, you do.

Your next-to-last paragraph started the tears for me, especially the last line.

Thank you for all the work you do to help other families who are suffering like yours did...and still are. I am amazed and think of your family often.

Pat in CA said...

Jenny, your posts always amaze me; so eloquent! Could you share the name of the lullaby CD? A friend of mine has just given birth, and so far Natalia is a lullaby baby also. I'd love to share Allie's with her too.

Thanks,
Love & hugs from CA.,
Pat

Heroes for Children said...

Need to work on my link colors--the words a CD in the first sentence are hyperlinks to the CD name. The words final song on the first sentence of the second to last paragraph is a link to a sound clip of the song. I'll make a change so people can see it better. Sorry about that!

snekcip said...

Oh Jenny how I remember sharing those moments in room 1203! I remember the "raspberry kisses", the 'tummy time", giraffe loving sweet girl! I remember the entries of "the girl" and the beautiful
butterfly sightings after her passing. Oh how that beautiful smile of Precious Allie will forever be wonderful memory to me! I still from time to time visit the site to look at pictures of the ROLY POLY baby girl!! She as truly an angel amongst us!

Yes Allison Scott was the first child I followed on the CB site! Allie's journey thrust me into a world of childhood cancer that I somehow surmised only happen on those commercials! Allie put a REAL FACE on this beast! It is Allie who gave me the courage to become a blood donor and register as a BMT donor!! Allie's time here on earth was definitely not in VAIN! Thank you and Andrew for the gift of ALLISON SCOTT!! She has taught us lessons here on earth that only be taught by none other than an angel!

Mom Of 3 said...

As the tears are rolling down my face, I want you to know that you are an amazing person. Allie touched my life in ways I will never be able to put into words. Thank you for sharing the story and for sharing Allie!
Lots if Love!

Laura said...

**hugs**

Like so many others, Allie's was my first site and my first experience with childhood cancer. It is a world no parent wants to enter and the strength and eloquence with which you lived it has been such an inspiration to me. I am watching two sites now and watching another two children losing their battles which breaks my heart. Your words & strength of spirit have lifted me up again. Thank you for sharing these moments with all of us.

Candice said...

Absolutely a beautiful post. Thank you for sharing your memories, even when they are bittersweet. I am sure many parents, like myself, hug their own babies a little closer when they think of Allie.

The Wunsch Bunch said...

Jenny, thanks for the Allie story...I love hearing about her. As for many, Allie has made me a better person.

My cousin Nicholas was diagnosed with ALL when he was four, and eventually lost his battle at age 14. Nicky was only 5 years younger than me, so at the time I didn't feel the impact of this horrible disease. It wasn't until I "met" you and Allie that I understood. I am currently training with Team In Training in honor of Nicky. However, Allie is the reason why I have this strong desire to do whatever I can for childhood cancer.

Once again, thank you for sharing Allie...and for changing my life.

sarah said...

thank you for sharing . what cd is that. I really enjoyed the song. My kids are music listeners when they sleep

Melissa said...

Oh boy am I a blubbering mess now! I think about Allie all the time, the other day while picking out coloring books Aiden only wanted the book with the Giraffe on the covor, nothing else would do, and it really made me smile he wanted that one from all the others. I'm so bad with words, but want to thank you for sharing this beautiful post. :)

xoxoxoxo

AbbyandBrianasMommy said...

She is still present in so many hearts- I love to come back to scotthousehold.com and remember that life is so special and must be cherished- how a little girl can make such life changing impacts on so many hearts and lives-

Beth at I Should Be Folding Laundry said...

Allie, you and your entire family are such special, amazing people. This post was so beautiful, bringing tears to my eyes.

Candes said...

I ck your site often and have loved seeing Allie's pic on the new site.

I'm really glad you shared this post. In an odd way it comforted me to hear you talk about Allie.

My sons are so different. My oldest has a cd we've played as a bedtime routine since he was weeks old, he's now 3 1/2. My second son likes the silence.

Peace and comfort

Candes said...

PS I made my first donation to St. Judes months ago.

What an instrument Allie has been.