As we near Alex’s first birthday, I’m conflicted about what that milestone means to me. I miss him every day. I hope and pray for his safety, happiness and general well-being every chance I pray. In the meantime, I care for our family here on earth… as I think about how we have adjusted to his absence, I’m not sure if I am happy we are adjusting, or sad that Alex is less of a part of our everyday lives.
I’m cleaning out the nursery. Well, actually, it’s pretty much cleaned. Not a speck of blue to be found in the entire room. Every single blue hanger has been replaced with white. Every bib and burp cloth has been removed. Even the onesies are gone… if they’re not ruffled, they’re out! It is a lot less crowded in there… bins overflow the hallway though.
There are remnants of my short time with Alex in everything that has moved out. Each thing he wore has special meaning to me. Even the things that he didn’t get to wear have special significance. It’s almost like there are more memories of his departure than his arrival.
The weather has turned nicer, and I am reminded of those final pregnant weeks. Those anticipatory moments where I was waiting for him, and overjoyed that we would be meeting soon.
I don’t have that now.
There is no promise of meeting my sweet boy anytime soon. I can trust that he’s fine, but until I can see him and hold him there is an ache. An ache that I have learned to manage, but an ache that doesn’t seem to heal. The pain flares up at unexpected times and I have no explanation.
I miss my son.
I miss the baby that he was, and the boy he never became. I miss all the happiness he brought. I miss the short time we spent together and I lament all the sadness that is left in his absence.
Nothing brings him back, and I am not sure what that means for us when his baby sister arrives. I hope I am as joyful for her arrival as I was when her brothers were born. I hope I can spend time savoring the memories we will share instead of looking over my shoulder with worry that something might go wrong. I hope I can be the same, carefree, grateful mommy that Alex had, instead of a hardened, weathered version of myself caused by months of grief.
She deserves better. She deserves a warm welcome, a joyful celebration with open hearts. I don’t know if healing hearts are as open as hearts that were never broken. I don’t know if healing hearts are maybe stronger than hearts that were never crushed, battered or bruised?
I’m not sure. I have lots of questions, very few answers and today, more tears than I can handle.
“Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in our hearts.” A.A. Milne