Are You Ready to Cut the Cord?

Written by Michelle

Within the confines of a hospital room humans can experience the most drastic myriad of feelings. From shocking devastation to pure elation, hospital walls hold countless stories filled with emotion: instances that weigh heavy in our minds and those tucked into special places within our hearts.


Are you ready to cut the cord?” the doctor asked him.


He’s answered the same way every time.


It didn’t matter how chaotic and powerful the previous hours had been. The minutes leading up to this moment were filled with countless attending doctors, nurses, residents and family members all occupying a small hospital room. Crying, cheers, support and morale all accompanied the scene.The amount of beeps, cries or noisy machines could not mute or deafen his enthusiastic reply. Time stopped for us, and with it came a feeling that words could never really describe.


It wasn’t what he said, but how he said it. A big smile, huge eyes shining with delight.


I’ve heard it three times.


Are you ready to cut the cord?” the doctor repeated.

“Absolutely!” has been my husband’s response. Every. Single. Time.


And in ONE word we gave permission to officially share with the world what we had felt, seen grow, and loved unconditionally from the very beginning.


Last week, as I walked into a hospital for my son’s tonsillectomy procedure, I wasn’t prepared for my body’s reaction. It wasn’t the entryway, the elevator, the doctors or the machines that inevitably became background muffled noise as my reality surfaced.


It was seeing the little miracle that we had brought into this world change out of his clothes and into a hospital gown. In an instant, I was vulnerable, and my heart was on the table right there next to him.


My heart raced and my nose and eyes tingled. Fast and furious tears were coming.


But I STOPPED. I QUICKLY stopped. I am a MOM. I HAVE to be strong.


As my son made himself comfortable in triage, he cracked jokes. He posed in his gown.


He asked us to take pictures of the amazing TV he could watch at any angle from his bed.  He thought it was fantastic! 


Numb at this point, my husband and I concurred.


While Liam looked forward to starting a popsicle vacation filled with hours of movies, my heart was in my throat. Fear, sadness and uncertainty blurred my senses.


He was lighthearted, eager and receptive to the nurses and doctors as they explained the procedure. He was strong, and so were we. Or so, we pretended to be.


And then, in an instant, it was time to take him away into an operating room. We exchanged hugs, kisses, jokes and last minute fist pumps while we followed his bed and the entourage of doctors and nurses into the operating room.


At the crosspoint of seeing our child wave as he was wheeled away, we had to let go. I had to let go.


It was time for ME to cut the cord.


In my mind, I heard:


Are you ready to cut the cord? 


I thought of the good, the bad, and everything you don’t voice out loud but always crosses your mind.


But I STOPPED. I QUICKLY stopped. I am a MOM. I HAVE to be strong.


Are you ready to cut the cord? the voice repeated in my head.


Absolutely! I responded.


I will.


But my heart is right there on the table.

With him.

Everyday and forever.

…and wherever he takes it.



Categories: Family, Michelle

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11 replies

    • You are so right! As my mother in law always says, it only gets harder. I’m grateful for these moments that at least seem to prepare us. Thank you so much for reading!

      • People always say it only gets harder. so far I don’t fully agree I think the little people stage is the hardest, the most relentless of all and I have a pretty complex teen to deal with but it’s not relentless 🙂

  1. So beautiful…. My toddler had ear tubes put in last spring, and it was far harder for me than for him. Watching him be put under with anesthesia was just horrific. And that’s what it felt like: my heart was right there on that hospital bed, but I had to be strong.

  2. You are so right! I even thought this moment was so much harder than childbirth. 😦 Nothing prepares you for it. Thank you so much reading!

  3. OK, seriously. I can’t be crying at work! Love all your posts!

  4. Oh, I cried! I’ve been there and it’s so hard – but what a great story!

  5. I have chills and tears in my eyes. This is so beautiful and so true especially when you say, “I thought of the good, the bad, and everything you don’t voice out loud but always crosses your mind.” I hate those things we think but never want to say.

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