close to heaven

Every Thursday I look back at a specific day and time that was spent with my daughter Matilda as she waited for, received, and recovered from a liver transplant. She was in the hospital for 72 days and we remained in NYC until she turned four months old.

October 31st, 2012 - close to heaven

One minute everything was fine, I was talking about leaving to get a coffee, the next Matilda crashed. Her alarms all started blaring at once. Everyone got to work. Doctors were called. Extra nurses rushed to our little room. Her blood pressure dropped to 20/10.

Tyler and I backed up in the corner. We were quiet and still. I looked at Matilda and prayed, "keep her alive, just keep her alive." She was fighting. I could feel it. She could have so easily left us right then. She could have so easily let go to be in peace. She could have, but she fought. She fought for me.

For 15 minutes, doctors and nurses flooded our room. They shouted. They ran. They ordered. They pushed. Their dance was beautiful - it was full of emotion and power, it was full of life and hope. They convinced Matilda's body to hold on, to wait just a few more days, and then they left. We could breathe.

The thing is, right there, in that moment, sitting with Matilda, tears streaming down my face, I was so close to heaven. I felt it.

There are times in life that are undeniably hard. I was enduring the worst and every moment felt like my heart was going to burst into a million painful pieces. But at the same time, I had never felt more love. I had never felt so close to God. I had never dreamed of being this close to heaven, but when I was near Matilda, I felt it.

It wasn't just after terrifying moments like this when I felt it. It came in waves, when I was really focused on the love, when I felt the most peace, when I allowed myself to trust and be in the moment for what it was. This beautiful wave of warmth would rush through my body. It was heaven and in those moments I knew that all would be okay.

Matilda looked like a mess, but I didn't see any of it. I saw before me the most beautiful angel, glowing of heaven, telling me that everything was going to be okay.

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