February 7, 2008. Beau Hunter Weichers came into this world - 2 weeks late. I guess it should have been an indication that things might always take a little longer with Beau. It was a scary delivery. It all seemed fine and I labored only a short period and delivered but when your baby, your first born, doesn't cry it's the most terrifying and quiet sound you've ever experienced. I didn't hear the alarms, I vaguely remember the amazing NICU nurses rushing in, I don't remember my doctor stitching me up at all - I just remember repeatedly saying, "why isn't he crying?". It wouldn't be the last time we thought we had lost our boy.
Intuition would tell me several times during that first year that something was different about Beau. I hated the routine check up appointments because Beau was never meeting their stupid milestones on their stupid charts. He was a year old and couldn't crawl, let alone walk. I went to PT with him and I would crawl over his body while holding his middle section up to keep him from falling. He eventually got it and they discharged us from physical therapy.
July 29, 2009 was the second time we thought we would lose our Beau Beau. That night was when epilepsy entered our world. It was the night my poor husband had to talk to the 9-1-1 operator while I held our limp baby. You can be trained to know what to do in an emergency, as I was, however when your 17 month old child is the patient it throws you into a tailspin. One thought I've never shared is the conversation I had with God that night. Maybe I never shared it for fear that people would think I was crazy. Beau was laying with his head near the hallway wall and as I laid my ear to his mouth and chest I focused on something on that wall - I can't tell you exactly what I saw but my focus was locked on the wall. In my mind the words I remember were, if Beau doesn't make it, I won't make it either. I wasn't sure how it would happen, but I knew I couldn't handle any more. Life was rough at that time and "loss" was a common word for us. Mentally, I felt done. Thankfully God wasn't going to let Beau's story end there.
Looking back over the last 9 years we have been on a crazy roller coaster ride. I was one person before July 29, 2009 and a different person after. It was so hard. So, so very hard and some days it still is. Pill organizers, diapers, a communication device, therapies, drop down tantrums in the middle of a store - ongoing. I never realized the impact a special needs child could have not only on us as parents but also on family members, community members, classmates and teachers. He has taught me things you can't learn in any book.
Watching the bond he shares with his younger sister was something my heart needed. From early on she babbled with Beau and he babbled right back. They had their own language. And today she is often the only one that can calm him when he is really upset and she knows his signs and grunts just as well as Andy and I do. She will talk to you about his diagnosis. At 4 years old, she is wise beyond her years, and God's other amazing gift to us. Beau has grown so much with the help of Delaney.