A year ago today was the day before Karissa passed away. I can recall most of what I did that day. Mark and Karissa left the house at around 7:30 that morning. Mark took Karissa to her special day class which she attended 3 times a week. She was usually there for about 4 hours. We had the option of having her there all day but I was uncomfortable with that. Honestly, I didn't want her to do the full-day thing because I missed her too much. That day she was there for about 7 hours...way too long for me.
I went grocery shopping and bought a ton of food. We had just returned home from our vacation in La Quinta and we had nothing to eat in the house. I spent most of the day preparing meals for the week. The house was so quiet that day. It was weird. I missed Karissa and all her precious sounds and noises.
At around 1:00 I realized that I forgot a few things at the store. I returned to the store, got what I needed and then drove through El Pollo Loco. I was sitting in the drive-thru and that is when, at 1:21, I called the school to see how Karissa's was doing. Actually, I called every day she was at school to get a report about her day. They said she was still napping. Shortly after that, Mark picked her up.
Mark called me from the car and I remember talking to Karissa. She wasn't saying much and Mark said she seemed kind of tired. Anyways, I remember feeling sooooo excited that they were coming home. I actually waited on the front porch for them. I remember running out to the car to get Karissa. I was elated! I had missed her so much.
When I got her from the car, I was appalled at what she was wearing. Apparently, they had water play at school and they had to change her clothes. Well, they put some other child's clothes on her by mistake. The outfit was mismatched and the clothes were like 2 sizes to big! Ughhhh!
I gave her dinner and did the night-time routine: meds, bath, brushed teeth, bedtime stories and then lights out. We live in a 1906 house with the push button light switches. Every night I had her turn her light off. I was so proud of her when she turned the light off. Karissa had a hard time with her fine motor skills so pushing a button was a BIG deal. I always said "light off" and tried to get her to imitate me. I also read Goodnight Moon almost every night. However, a year later, I can't remember if I read it to her. That makes me so very sad.
At around 10:30 that night, Karissa was up and about in her room. That was usually an indication that she was going to have seizures the following day. I still can't recall how we got her back to sleep. That makes my sad as well.
I had such a hard time sleeping that night. I remember praying and asking the Lord to heal my baby girl. I prayed that He would heal her from her seizures. I also prayed that He would give me strength and patience to get through the days ahead. Having a child with special needs take
A LOT of work. I loved it, but it was hard work! Only those that have special needs children can truly appreciate and understand what I am saying.
At around 1:30 am, I went into her room. Sometimes I would go in her room and pray over her. I can't recall if I did that night. Anyways, Karissa had a big therapy pillow next to her bed. It was given to us by one of her therapists to help her improve her balance. We would put it in the middle of the doorway to her room so she would have to walk over it. I crashed on it for about 30 minutes. I was listening to her breathing.
I ended up going to bed in the room next to Karissa's. I didn't wake up until around 7:30 the next morning. I thought it was strange that Karissa was not awake yet. That was my first clue that something was not right. I can still remember Mark standing right outside her room, just staring and then he said "oh no." I think he said, she's gone. She was cold to the touch and there was nothing we could do. I remember opening her eyes and looking at them. Don't know why I did that. It is all still very surreal to me.
5 years ago