Wednesday, March 4, 2015

dear reece

Dear Reece,

Hi baby, it's your Mama.  I've been thinking about you so much this week, moreso than other weeks.  You've been on my mind almost every second of every day.  And today has been a rough one for me.  It's a weird thing, this grief thing.  There were about two weeks there, the past two weeks, where I felt really good!  And not to say I was healed, or fixed, or "over" the fact that you are not here with us...but I felt better about everything.  I could talk about you to strangers without getting upset.  I could diffuse awkward questions from people who had asked about you, but didn't know you had died, without making them feel uncomfortable.  I started to feel like I finally had a handle on this grief thing.

And then today happened.

Reece, there have been many days like this since you were born and died.  Days where I just.can't.function properly.  For no specific reason.  Days where I get overwhelmed with the simplest of responsibilities.  Days where things like going to a doctor appointment and giving my recent medical history wouldn't have broken me (like it did today).  Baby boy, I have lived through so many of these days and I am still here to tell the story, so I must be making some progress...but then days like today happen, and I feel overwhelmed and mercilessly sad, and I just can't shake it.

And I know I won't be able to just "shake it."  It doesn't happen like that.  There doesn't always have to be a trigger or a thing that happens to make this difficult for me.

It's difficult for me because you are not here, and I'm not able to see you grow up.  I miss you.  Your sister misses you.  She grieves in her own little way.  She still talks about and thinks about you and writes about you.  Though it's not always to me.  I think she doesn't want to upset me, like so many other people think.  But the reality is, I love when people talk about you to me. Or ask about you.  I miss you every moment of every single day.  You are never a bad reminder.  The only thing bad is that I didn't have more time with you.

I mostly think this week has been so tough because if you had been born at term, instead of prematurely, we would've been celebrating you turning six months old this week.  I so distinctly remember when your sister Sadira turned six months old.  I wonder if you would be doing some of the same things that she did at that age.  I wonder if you would be sitting up like she did, or rolling (she never did).  I wonder what your laugh would sound like, and what color your eyes would be.  Would they still be blue like your dad's, or would they have turned brown like mine?  At this point you would be smiling big giant smiles.  Smiles that would be big enough to see your dimples.  (And I know you would've had dimples).

These are the things that I miss and wonder about.  I will always count in my head how old you should be, what you should be doing, and how we should be spending our days as a family.  I wonder what foods you would've tried, which ones you would like and which ones you would hate.  I can only imagine the funny faces you would make to let us know if you DIDN'T like something.  That was always one of my favorite things Sadira did when she was your age.

I wonder if you would've been like Sadira and slept through the night at a crazy early age, or if you would still be waking me up at night.  Just so you know, I wouldn't have minded if you were here and waking me up at night.  I wouldn't have minded at all.

I still have most of your clothes, your crib, you rocking chair...all of the things that we bought just for you, but never got to use.  I was able to give some of your clothes away to some dear friends of mine who had baby boys about your age.  Not a bunch, but just a couple things.  That was very hard for me at first, but then I was glad that to see other baby boys wearing the things that I had so carefully picked out for you.

So many of your things have anchors on them.  Almost all, actually.

I don't know if it's a good or bad that I've held on to most of your things.  But I can't part with them.  It's all that I have to remember you.  The box of your cloth diapers that arrived in the mail two days after you died still sits in the top of the closet, unopened.  I can't open it, but I can't get rid of it.  These are the things I struggle with.

I hope you know how very loved you are, even if you are not here with us.  Your presence is so much a part of my life.  The people who know me the best make me so so happy when they talk about you!  A couple weeks ago I was talking to your Aunt Neda and she mentioned that she sometimes gets so sad thinking that she will not get to see you grow up.  And even though we both cried about it on the phone, my heart was singing with joy when she said that.  Because it means she remembers you and misses you too.  Same with your Aunt Tessa.  They miss you too.  Everyone does.

Reece, I would give absolutely anything to have you back here with me.  Absolutely anything in the world.  But the reality is, there is nothing I can ever do to make that happen.  I just hold onto my firm belief that there will be one day where I get to see you again.  I truly believe it, more than ever these days.

Sometimes people say to me, "you know he's always with you," and I want to believe that, baby boy, I do.  But the reality is, I'm selfish and I don't want you to be with me in that sense.  I want you HERE.  In my arms, in our home.  I want to hear you babbling, and shrieking, and saying "mama" and "dada."  I want to watch Sadira hold your little hands and help you stand.  I want her get grossed out at you because you blew out your diaper and you've become a giant mess.  I want you to keep me up all night because you've caught your first cold and you're stuffy and having trouble sleeping.  I want to be frustrated because you've started to wean yourself from nursing at six months like your sister did, and I have to resign myself to giving you formula because you prefer a bottle.

I want all of those things, and those things cannot be.  It's a tough fate to accept, sweet baby.  I love you and miss you every single moment of every single day.

I'll love you forever, I'll like you for always, as long as I'm living my baby you'll be.



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