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写给难产而死的妻子(一封感人的信)


 

我亲爱的Joanne,

我一直记得在我们的宝贝女儿Ilaria出生前一个月我们的谈话。 你坦然地问我,如果你出了什么事,我会如何照顾她,我记得我告诉你别说傻话,但你是那么认真,你说:“我只要你时常告诉她,她妈妈有多爱她,同时告诉她我是怎样的一个人,保证她每天干净整洁,并要吃蔬菜!”现在,我很高兴我们能有那次谈话,也希望能做到你要我做的事。

你走后,我多希望你能在这和我们一起渡过所有的特别时刻。现在,以前我们在一起时的回忆是那么宝贵。

当我说我在见到你那一刻就爱上你时你曾笑话我,但那是真的。记得我在一家夜店看见你,最终鼓起勇气问你能否请你喝一杯,而你说好,我不敢相信我如此幸运。

我在威尼斯向你求婚。我们坐着贡多拉,开心地聊着,虽然破费不少。记得你斜着头看着太阳,告诉我那是你一生中最快乐的日子之一。当你沿着红地毯走向我,我知道你就是我的心灵伴侣,我的唯一。

当发现你怀孕时,我们狂喜,很快我们知道是个女孩,我们趁分娩前的几个月准备好了育儿室。

每当我们的孩子踢你,你都抓住我的手放到你的肚子上,说:“你能感觉到她么,Christian?她多好动!”

在你见了威尼斯的一位家庭朋友后,你决定给我们的女儿起名叫Ilaria,因为你发现在拉丁语里,Ilaria意味“永远快乐”。

在Ilaria出生前我们看到了她,通过三维扫描看到了她的脸,她很漂亮。

在你预产期过了两周后,位于波士顿我们家附近的医院决定帮你引产,我庆幸我们那样做了。接下来发生的事情我不愿想下去。

当Ilaria快生出来,助产师让你使劲时,Ilaria的心跳骤降,她看上去很难受。你惊恐地看着我,周围的医生尝试着取她出来,她出来时身体紫黑,护士立刻把她放入婴儿特殊护理区,你叫道:“她怎么样?还好么?”我所能说的只是:“是的,她很漂亮,就像你一样。”

一想到你没看到女儿,没有抱过她,我的心都碎了。那时你的心率开始加快,血压下降,医生说必须把你马上送进手术室,当他们推你出去,我抓住你的脚,对你说:“我爱你。”没想到却成了我们有生最后一面。几分钟后医生把我叫到一边,告诉我Ilaria出现大脑损伤的症状,他们估计她可能活不下来,当时我不知道该先担心谁。

我还是去看了在保育箱里的Ilaria。半小时后医生告诉我一个至此改变我一生的消息,你大量出血,在他们试图给你做手术时你心脏停搏。

我的世界瞬间崩塌,我记得我吼道:“为什么!”你才27岁,健康,现在却这么走了,一个动脉瘤引发了出血,没有人可以预料到,医生们已经尽了全力。在太平间,你看上去就像安静地睡着了,我哭着亲吻了你的脸颊,抚摸你的头发。

我感到完全崩溃的时候护士找到我,说有不可思议的事情发生,领我去看Ilaria,她胸部和鼻子上的所有管子已经被拔掉,她可以自己呼吸了,护士说这真是奇迹。

这表示我们的Ilaria活下来了,一个护士把她放到我的臂弯时她开始哭,当我对她说:“别担心,爸爸在这”时,她立刻不哭了。

我们的女儿将活下去,这就仿佛是你曾说过:“上帝,你可以带走我,但你不能带走我的女儿。”

在我觉得生无可恋时,我有了Ilaria,我换她第一片尿布,给她第一个奶瓶时想着你会怎么做,然后试着照着做。

在我从医院把Ilaria接回家的第三天,我不得不面对残酷的现实——你的葬礼。由3年前主持我们婚礼的教区牧师主持,有四百人参加。

那天晚上我躺在我们的床上,Ilaria睡在婴儿床里,我对你说:“Jo,你应该在这,我需要你,”我是如此渴望你此时能躺在我旁边。

这些天我都在哭,晚上我把Ilaria放在我旁边,告诉她关于你的一切,你是怎样的人,你漂亮,善良,亲切。房子里到处都摆着你的照片,我抱着Ilaria凑近它们好让她能够看到你。

等她慢慢长大,我会做其他事让她了解你,比如我会试着做一些你会做的东西给Ilaria吃,让我们漂亮的Ilaria了解她妈妈,即使她不记得你。

我希望你能听到我说的话:“Joanne,我想念你,但我感谢你把我们的女儿带来。”我只是希望你能在这和她在一起。

Ilaria在一岁时被诊断出大脑瘫痪,这意味着她不太可能会走路,不能正确地说话,需要长时间照顾。这是我全身投入的时候,我需要尽我所能给Ilaria最好的生活。虽然这很困难,但也很奇妙,我们就像两个小伙伴,现在她快4岁了,长的和你很像。

她的性格很好,即使只会说几个词,但“nihao”是她最喜欢的,她给了我太多的爱,她还是个名副其实的无礼的小家伙,能用她的小指头抱住我。

我放弃了地区销售主管的工作,为了能全身心照顾Ilaria,每天早上她都去彩虹之家,那里专门帮助像她一样的孩子。每次我看到她都觉得欣慰,因为她是你留给我的,你活生生的一部分。

我只是要你知道无论发生什么事,我都会把Ilaria抚养长大,让她成为让你感到自豪的人,同时让她永远记得她妈妈是多么的特别。

爱你的,

Christian

 

My darling Joanne,

I still remember the conversation we had just a month before our baby daughter Ilaria was born. 

Out of the blue you asked me how I’d look after her if anything happened to you. I remember telling you not to be silly but you were serious. “I’d just want you to tell her often how much her mummy loved her,” you said.

“And to tell her what sort of person I was. And make sure she’s clean and tidy and eats her vegetables!’ Now I’m so glad we had that conversation. And I hope I’ve done things as you wanted.

I just wish with all my heart that you were here to enjoy all the special moments we’ve shared since you were taken from us.

The memories of our time together are so treasured for me now.

You used to laugh when I said I fell in love with you the moment we met but I did. I saw you in a nightclub and finally gathered the courage to ask if you’d like a drink. I couldn’t believe my luck when you said yes.

I asked you to be my wife in Venice.

We splashed out on a gondola ride, giggling to ourselves. I remember you tilted your head up to the sun and told me that this was one of the best days of your life. And when you walked down the aisle I knew I’d married my soulmate, ‘the one’.

When we found out you were pregnant we were ecstatic and soon we discovered it was a girl and spent the months running up to the birth getting the nursery ready.

Every time our baby kicked you’d grab my hand, put it on your tummy and say, “Can you feel her Christian? She’s so lively!”

You wanted to call our daughter Ilaria after a family friend you’d met in Venice. You found out that in Latin it meant ‘always happy.’

We saw Ilaria before she was born. We had a 3D scan where you can see your baby’s face – she was beautiful.

I am so thankful we did that now. When you went two weeks past your due date the hospital near our home in Bolton wanted to induce you. It’s hard for me to think straight about what happened next.

When Ilaria was ready to come the midwife told you to push but Ilaria’s heartbeat dropped – she was in distress.

You looked at me in terror as we were surrounded by doctors trying to get Ilaria out. When she was born she was blue and nurses rushed her to the special care baby unit. You screamed, “Is she OK?” and all I could say was, “Yes, she’s beautiful, just like you.”

It breaks my heart you never even saw your daughter, let alone held her. Then your heart rate started going up and your blood pressure started going down. Doctors said they had to get you into theatre straight away.

As they wheeled you out I grabbed your foot and said “I love you”. It was the last time I saw you alive.


Minutes later a doctor took me aside and told me Ilaria was was showing signs of major brain damage and they didn’t expect her to live. I didn’t know which of you to turn to first.

I went to see Ilaria in her incubator. Half an hour later doctors told me the news that would change my life forever. There had been massive bleeding and as they tried to operate you’d had a cardiac arrest.

My world fell apart. I remember shouting, “Why?”

You were just 27, healthy as can be, and now you were gone. An aneurysm had caused the bleeding.

No-one could have foreseen it, the doctors did all they could.In the chapel of rest you looked like you were sleeping peacefully. I kissed your face and stroked your hair as I sobbed.

I felt totally lost. Then a nurse came to find me and said something amazing had happened and led me to Ilaria. She’d pulled all the tubes out of her chest and nose and was breathing on her own. The nurses said it was a miracle.

It seemed our Ilaria was determined to stay alive. A nurse laid her in my arms and she began to cry. “Don’t worry, Daddy’s here,” I told her, and she immediately stopped crying.

Our daughter was going to live.

It was as if you’d said, “God, you can have me, but you’re not having my daughter.”

Suddenly, from feeling I had nothing left to live for, I had Ilaria. I changed her first nappy, gave her her first bottle – I thought about how you’d have done it and tried to do it the same way.

But then it was back to the terrible reality – your funeral.

Four hundred people attended as the vicar who’d married us buried you just three years later.

And then, two days later I brought Ilaria home from the hospital.

That first night I lay in our bed, Ilaria beside me in her cot and I talked to you. “Jo, you should be here, I need you,” I said. I so desperately wished you were lying beside me.

I spent my days in tears. At night I’d lay Ilaria next to me and tell her about you – how, beautiful, good and kind you were.

Photos of you were all over the house and I’d hold Ilaria close to them so she could see you.

And as she gets older, I do other things to bring you into her life. I try to cook things I know you’d have made to make our beautiful Ilaria know her mum, even if she doesn’t remember you.

I hope you can hear me when I say: “I miss you Joanne but thank you for our wonderful daughter.” I just wish you were here to enjoy her.

When Ilaria was a year old she was diagnosed with cerebral palsy which means she is unlikely to walk. She’ll never speak properly and will require constant care. That’s when I pulled myself together. I needed to, to give Ilaria the best life I can.

Although it’s hard it’s wonderful too, we‘re like two little mates. She’s nearly four now and looks just like you.

And what a personality. Although she can only say a few words – “Hiya!” is her favourite – she gives me so much love and affection. She’s a real cheeky little thing, and can wrap me right round her little finger.

I gave up my job as an area sales manager so that I could devote my time to Ilaria. Every morning she attends Rainbow House, where they specialise in helping children like her.

Every time I look at her I get comfort because she’s a living part of you Joanne, your legacy.

I just want you to know that whatever happens I will bring up Ilaria in a way you would have been proud of – and she will always know how special her mummy was.

I love you my darling,

Christian

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