By Heather Glennon
My husband Sam and I lost our sweet baby boy, Travis at 38 weeks gestation in July 2016. I remember that day in July so vividly! The last day I felt him move was July 15. We took a walk down Main Street in our home town, went to our favorite spot to have wings, and put our almost 2-year-old to bed when we got home. As my husband and I sat on the sofa, I remember feeling a very slow knee or elbow roll slowly cross my stomach.
I went to bed about 8:45 that night; I had no idea that would be the last time I would feel him move. I had no idea what plan God had in mind for us when we woke up the next day.
I got up the next morning (Saturday), and went on to a photo shoot for a sorority sister I had scheduled that day. As I made my way to their house for photos, I poked at my stomach to see if I could get our baby to move, but I got NOTHING. I didn’t let it bother me too much as my first son didn’t move a whole lot. I remember standing in their kitchen, holding my belly, and my sorority sister’s husband asked if I felt alright. I said that my belly just felt heavy so I needed to hold it. Thinking back, it felt like dead weight I was holding; little did I know at that time it actually was. On my drive home, I kept poking and pushing hoping to get some sort of movement out of our child, but still, I felt NOTHING. When I got home, I told my husband I hadn’t felt any movement all morning and that it was weird since he was such a mover compared to our first son. He asked if I wanted to go to the hospital, and I was scared to admit that I did. I was afraid to admit that I didn’t want to know what I thought I knew. I convinced myself everything was fine, that things like this do not happen to normal people. I assured myself I was being completely paranoid, that everything was just fine. I went to our neighborhood pool and thought it would help me relax, but after about 30 minutes, I said, “Let’s go home.” It was close to 2:00pm and still I had felt no movement, NOTHING! My husband said, “Let’s just go to the hospital,” so we did.
I was nervous and anxious, but at 38 weeks pregnant, the thought of not hearing a heartbeat never crossed my mind.
We seemed to drive to the hospital in slow motion, as though I was soaking up every last second before we would learn that we would now be parents to an angel baby. Our world was about to take a very unfortunate turn, and we would join a club no one ever wants to be a part of.
When we arrived at the hospital, I approached the desk and said that I was not in labor, but I hadn’t felt the baby move all day, and I wanted to check things out. I was checked into a room, and a nurse came with a Doppler. She rubbed it around on my belly and a little bit of relief came over me, but she said, “That is your heartbeat” as she continued to rub the Doppler. I started to get worried, and still, NOTHING. She told me that Doppler hasn’t been working very well and that she was going to get an ultrasound machine. She rubbed that on my belly then said, “I don’t know how to work this machine all that well, let me go get another nurse.” The second nurse looked and still, NOTHING. By this point, I was about ready to lose it, but I was still keeping it together. Because things like this just don’t happen to normal people. These nurses are just crazy! Then, the doctor on call to come in to examine me, who scanned and then said, “I am so sorry, but this is his chest cavity (pointing at the screen) and we should see a heart flutter on the screen here.” Again, there was NOTHING!
I was in absolute shock as tears began rolling down my cheeks. How could this be happening to us? I had a healthy pregnancy with no signs of anything wrong.
NOTHING, not one thing, could have ever prepared me for this kind of news! How could this happen to us?! How could God let something like this happen?
Before becoming pregnant with our first son, we had several rounds of IUI’s, and I prayed all the time for God to please bless us with a child and to let this be the month. It wasn’t easy for us to become pregnant either time, but once I did, I truly had no pregnancy symptoms and no signs of any problems.
After the doctor gave us a few minutes, she went over different options with us…she told us we could go home and come back tomorrow to be induced or we could stay and we could start the process now. Was she crazy? I wasn’t going anywhere!
Later that evening I was induced, and that is something I wish no one ever has to go through. It was the most awful process to deliver a baby in a room of complete silence when you should be hearing crying.
How was I going to make it through this? How would I be able to function when I got home? How would I be able to pick myself up every day? Does our son know what happened?
While I questioned God and my beliefs, I also couldn’t fathom our precious son not living free and flying high if I didn’t have just a little trust in God.
It has taken me a very long time to realize that this tragedy did not just happen to me; it also happened to my husband, son and our entire family.
I was the one who carried him for 8.5 months, this was my loss; I went through the pain, not them. There are days I’m sure I made that very clear, and that wasn’t fair to my husband; I know that hurt him! But I thank God that he stood by me and listened and cared for me. We both lost a son that day!
One year and four days after I gave birth to Travis, I let myself see the beauty of what was surrounding me; I saw the signs God was sending me! Late in July 2017, I was feeling completely overwhelmed about the cost for the IVF cycle we were about to endure. While walking up our dock ramp, I saw a beautiful butterfly fluttering by! I just knew that was a sign for me to be free of everything I was worried and overwhelmed with that day. One year and four days later, I finally saw God’s true beauty!
There is no doubt in my mind that our little Travis fluttering by to tell me, “Everything is going to be okay, mom, I promise!”
While it may have taken me a little over a year to realize God’s true beauty, I know that our future is bright, and we will see our rainbow very soon! Just when I thought I had NOTHING, I truly had EVERYTHING! I just needed to let God show me!
I would like to step back to 2016, and tell you how we decided to honor Travis.
Shortly after giving birth to our angel, I told my husband I wanted something catchy and cute that we could do to honor our son. He came up with what we call Touchdowns for Travis. Do you remember Jump Rope for Heart, when you pledge a certain amount of money for each jump rope a child did? Well, Touchdowns for Travis works the same way. We fell in love with the name Travis one day while watching a Kansas City Chiefs game as my husband Sam yelled “Go, Travis, Go!” to the player Travis Kelce. When searching for a way to honor our boy, Touchdowns for Travis seemed very fitting, and I loved the cute catchy phrase. Sam began yelling “Go Travis, Go Travis, Go,” then he turned and looked at me and said, “Do you like that name for a boy?” I will be a Chiefs fan for life, and Travis Kelce may be my all-time favorite player now!
To honor our sweet baby boy Travis as we head into Kansas City Chiefs season, we raise money in his name to give back to those have gone through this tragic event. We have had such a tremendous support group from family and friends throughout this tragedy, and we have learned from attending support groups and meetings that not everybody is as lucky as we are.
We raise money for Share Pregnancy and Infant Loss Support in Travis Wesley Glennon’s name as donations are pledged per touchdown by any Kansas City Chiefs tight end. We believe doing this will help others, and us, heal (if possible) as well as always remember our angels taken too soon.
What we love about this fundraiser is that throughout football season, we have lots of family and friends cheering on the Kansas City Chiefs and remembering our angel as they watch football.