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Monthly Archives: March 2013

#51: Timing

It’s so weird, but my body has this internal clock. I hardly know what day of the week it is, let alone what the actual date is. However, I feel it creeping up and the ominous gray cloud sort of looms over me. It takes me awhile to identify what that nebulous, yucky feeling is, and then I realize that it’s almost April. Almost Alex’s birthday.

I need to pause for a moment to validate how old he would have been. Molly’s birth and presence have sort have clouded the dates in my mind. April 11th was Alex’s birthday. June 9th was when he died. Molly was born on May 29th. What year did all this happen? Alex was born and died in 2011? Molly was born in 2012? What year is it now? 2013? It’s all jumbled together and fuzzy. I have to stop and think about the exact dates and details, but I have a visceral feeling around this time of year. I don’t know how else to describe it.

For so many people, Spring represents a wonderful, fun time of year. It is Easter eggs and bunny brunches and tulips and flowers… For me, it’s this looming memory of a beautiful little boy who was born into a family that loved him very much. It’s memories of adjusting to the excitement and joy of having two boys. It’s feeling so utterly unprepared for such a devastating loss on a beautiful summer day in June.

Mentally, I can separate these events from the season. There are happy memories of the Spring. Being pregnant with Molly, taking Benjamin to the park, visiting the zoo as a family… But my initial response associates these things with Alex and it catches me off guard.

That first warm day in the Spring, the smell of the air, the way everything changes from Winter. I know his birthday is coming and the sadness sort of wafts over me in a way I can’t avoid. I have more coping techniques now. I can bottle everything up until a time when I’m better able to handle everything, but when it all comes out, it seems as fresh and clear as it did the day he died.

I’m not sure if there’s always going to be a hard time of year. It’s like the only thing that brings me joy during this time is being pregnant. I can think about all the wonderful “firsts” that I’ll get to have all over again, and I can imagine that this new baby coming into the world is just like my sweet Alex.

I drift back to the day that he died and I indulge the painful thoughts around what it would be like if he had never died. How would our lives have been different? I can’t help but think that things would have been better if he were still here. Would Molly have been born? I’m not wishing that she weren’t here. I’m not wishing that she were him. I’m just thinking. What if Alex had always awoken from naps like he was supposed to?

How would our lives be different? There’s no answer, so I never finish turning this question over in my mind. It nags at me and I don’t ever quite get the closure that I’m looking for.

It’s been so long since he died, that I feel like I need to justify why I’m sad. Honestly, I don’t even think about Alex every single day of my life. When I do think about him, I’m sad. I don’t know how else to describe it. Sometimes I’m just sad and I want there to be some grand explanation for why. It hurts. Still. A little less than when it first happened, but still arresting in an entirely different way…

I miss him. Maybe that’s all it is. He pops into my thoughts, more this time of year and while there are happy memories of our time with him, the sad ones of his departure are the freshest.

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Posted by on March 26, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

#50: In Place

Molly turned 9 months today. We took her to the doctor and she is off the charts for height and weight. A happy, healthy, beautiful baby girl. Amazing!

There was a time when I feared she wouldn’t reach the milestones that Alex did. I feared that she would leave us abruptly, just like Alex. That we would be left to pick up the pieces of her brief time on earth. As Molly got older, I would lament the fact that she was doing things that Alex never did. That she was getting bigger, sitting up, rolling over, and Alex never got past the stage where he loved to nurse and would fall asleep in my arms.

Fast forward to my crazy, roly-poly girl. She’s so giggly and funny. She loves to eat… she adores Benjamin and she has been such a beautiful blessing for our family.

Things feel as they should.

I still love Alex. I miss him and I think about him, but it feels like things have settled into a place where they belong. Alex was here long enough to show us the joy of two children and to remind us to cherish all the special moments we have with them. He wasn’t here long enough that I can hear his voice in my mind. He wasn’t here so long that I would be haunted by the sound of his footsteps as he ran into my arms. He was and remains, a brief blessing that we will never forget.

Molly is here to stay. The more I realize that, and believe it in my heart, the more I enjoy her. I love to feel her sticky hands run through my hair and have her two silly teeth gum at my legs whenever she crawls up to me. I cherish all of her sweet moments and I feel so blessed as she hits milestones her brother never obtained.

We’re about to embark on a family trip to Mexico and I’m excited to show my baby girl the world! I don’t complain about the lines at TSA and I don’t freak out about the possibility that she might cry on the plane. I have two wonderful children to love and soothe whether they sleep, scream or snuggle. I’ll be there, cherishing all the memories we are making as a family. I don’t feel like I’m counting down the time we have left. I feel like I’m building up all the time we have together,

It feels different. Nice.

I know that life isn’t going to be perfect from here on out. There will be lots of trials and tribulations in our future, I’m sure. The good news is that I can see the sun shining behind my rainbow baby and I can feel the heat warm my soul. Alex is where he was meant to be and my arms on earth are filled with life. Once again the fullness of life outweighs the emptiness of death and I am humbled with gratitude. God bless.

 
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Posted by on March 1, 2013 in Uncategorized