Thank You to P/SL & RMHC at P/SL Staff

By Eric and Cory Benson 

I got pregnant with our first child at the end of May and was due February 18th. My husband and I were so excited and couldn't wait for the arrival of our first baby. We went in to find out our baby's gender in October, which is when we discovered our baby had complications that were not "compatible with life." Many doctors gave us the option to terminate the pregnancy, but we felt strongly that this child was a gift and we were to let God determine how long he would live. As we walked through the difficulty of waiting each day to see if our child would survive, we learned how to enjoy each day we had with him. We got to know him before he was even born.

As we saw the different doctors and specialists, we had to decide which hospital to deliver in. Knowing very well that our child would most likely not live very long after being born, we wanted to be in the care of a doctor who would do their best to help our child live through the delivery so we could meet him alive, if even for a moment. We also wanted to have nurses who would love our baby, care for him, and treat him as a special little boy whose life deserved to be honored.

We chose PSL after hearing MANY wonderful things about them. I went into labor about a month early, and ended up delivering our baby boy January 16th at 5:36 pm. Joshua Isaac Benson lived for 9 minutes as I held him on my chest and we loved him and took in every moment we had with him. We were so blessed by Dr.Kahn and the many nurses who helped us that day. We knew going into the hospital that this would be the day we met our son and also said goodbye to him. We wanted it to be such a special day that everyone would remember, and the entire staff that worked with us while we were there blessed us in so many ways. The doctors were very good about monitoring him, as they knew our request was to hold him alive if possible. The nurses were so caring and supportive. I have never met so many new people in one day and felt so encouraged and loved by every one of them. The care and encouragement was overwhelming. We had staff members coming into our room all day asking what they could to help, knowing our situation was unique and that we'd be facing many emotions later that day. We were given a basket of clothes to choose an outfit to dress Joshua in, we had nurses call the Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep foundation to get a photographer there for us, we were given tons of emotional support for what we were about to go through, our anasthesiologist was so personable and friendly - the list goes on and on.

Everyone who came into our room had some way of giving to us so generously and of impacting us. After Joshua was born, the two nurses who were there for comfort care were so loving and tender with our precious baby. They took care of him as we would have, loving him and handling him so gently. We were surrounded by nurses who took in the emotion of Joshua's arrival and his departure within such a short time, and we felt as though they were experiencing those emotions with us. When you experience something like that, those who are caring for you become a huge part of such a life changing day. They allowed our family and friends to be in the room to meet Joshua, and we felt as though the nurses partook in his life along with our loved ones. It was the best day of our lives as we met our first born child, and it was the saddest day of our lives as we said goodbye to him. Nurses and doctors can make a day like that better or worse, and those at PSL made it better. We were extremely blessed by everyone who was involved in Joshua's life, and feel as though they all made his arrival even more special for us. We are so grateful for the way they cherished and honored his life, though it was short here on earth. We were so encouraged by their support, prayers and loving words. After we left PSL, my husband and I could not stop talking about how blessed we were by the staff. There are truly some VERY special people at that hospital, and they played a big role in making that the most incredible day of our lives. As difficult as it is to lose a child, it is such a blessing as parents to have nurses and doctors love your baby, care for him and celebrate his life with you.

Our son knew nothing but love that day, and we are so grateful for that. When you know your child has only minutes to live, you want his life to be honored and celebrated. We have read stories of doctors and nurses who have encouraged parents in our situation to pretty much ignore their baby so they do not get attached. We have read about mothers who never even held their baby because nurses recommended they take the baby away immediately. We are so very grateful for the support we had to love Joshua and to have as much time as we needed to hold him and to take in every detail of his precious little body. Those memories I have are priceless - an extremely valuable treasure. Each detail of his face: his perfectly round cheeks, his cute little nose, his rounded chin, his most precious tiny hands, his little shoulders, his adorable feet, his soft head ... every detail we were able to take in the best we could as we held him in our arms. We will have those memories forever, and we are so thankful the staff allowed us and encouraged us to have that time with him. The photographers for Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep were also wonderful. They came in and captured memories of our son that we will have forever. They talked to him, loved him and partook in our very special time with him. That was an incredible gift and we are so thankful for the opportunity to have them there. We were so touched by everyone involved in our son's life, that we asked for donations to the Now I Lay Me To Sleep foundation or to PSL in lieu of flowers because we want other families to be touched the way we were. We cannot thank everyone enough, and hope we can somehow share our appreciation with them. We have been to a variety of doctors and hospitals in the past, and PSL is a very special place! Never have we experienced such loving, caring and supportive staff as we did while were there. What a gift it was for us to deliver our child there and to share in the lives of everyone we met that day, if even for only a day. The Lord gave us an incredible gift by giving us our son, and we are forever grateful to everyone involved in his life that day!