We just returned from a long trip away for the holidays. Unfortunately before we left things were crazy and we never managed to make it to your resting place to decorate for Christmas. This broke my heart. How can I not dedicate an hour or two to get a little tree like we did last year and decorate it? I feel so guilty and I am so sorry. Please know you were with us every moment of this holiday season and I know you were celebrating Jesus' birthday in the best place possible. I have to remind myself so the guilt doesn't eat me up. Please please forgive me. I know life has been crazy for us with your little sister, my work etc. but it's no excuse.
Traveling out of state for the holidays was really tough. I missed not visiting your resting place on Christmas. We lit your candle and had it lit all day, reminding us all that you were there with us. It was so hard to take the cousin picture in front of the tree with only 5 cousins in the photo. You should have been there with us. Every moment felt incomplete and I was constantly reminded that there was a big gap. Connor and Liam play so well with their two older cousins. Reilly was always left out though because she is so much younger. I couldn't help but think you and her would be best buds and would gang up on the older ones. She has such a personality and I wish I got the chance to know yours better. I wish I had the chance to see you grab and stare at the Christmas tree lights for hours on end in pure awe of their beauty. I wish I had the chance to see you meet Santa for the first time as Reilly did this year...wondering what hides behind the big white beard? I wish I had the chance to see you now, a roaring 22 month old, sticking your fingers in Liam's 4th birthday cake and liking them in delight. All of these big milestones that bring so much joy to our family now also bring so much pain and wonder. Why? Why did God take you from us? I was not ready to say goodbye.
Speaking of not being ready to say goodbye, our trip out of town was made longer because of an unexpected loss. Your great uncle Larry passed away suddenly 3 days before Christmas. Though he had cancer, he had been doing very well. Unfortunately he came down with pneumonia and though they thought it was being treated, he suddenly passed away, leaving most of the family no time to say goodbye. He was a great uncle to your father and I know he misses him dearly. Not being able to say goodbye is such a hard thing to deal with. Though, I often wonder if I had time to say goodbye to you would it have been any easier? I know friends who have lost their children to cancer and that breaks my heart thinking of knowing that you are going to loose your child. I don't know if I could say which one is easier. I feel like I am still suffering from PTSD since I found you lifeless and am still in shock telling myself you are really gone. Sometimes I feel like one morning I am finally going to wake up from this nightmare and you will be right next to me, telling me you have been there all the time. I know you are still with me, you will always be with me. I hope you were able to greet your great uncle Larry as he joined you in God's resting place and I hope he is able to bring you comfort and love.
Please help your father and I in looking after your two older brothers. The poor little guys have had to go to three funerals of loved ones in just over a year. I hate the fact that I know they have had to walk up and see their loved ones bodies in a casket. I can't imagine all the questions that go on in their heads. I hate that they do not have the sense of security I had as a young child. I didn't have to experience the death of a loved one up close and personal until I lost your great grandmother in middle school. At least by then, I was able to process it all. I feel guilty that I can't protect your brothers and I couldn't protect you. I have to remind myself though that God is protecting us all and maybe one day we will all know why life works out the way it does.
Sweet bear, I hope you had the merriest of Christmases up in heaven and I hope you have the happiest of new years. We are laying low tonight because as you know, your sister has been very sick. Up with coughing and fevers for 5 nights now. I know you have been there with us in the darkest hours of exhaustion. Thinking of you reminds me to appreciate even these tough times because you never know when your time with a loved one will end.
I vow to start 2014 without the guilt and vow to dedicate more time to starting your foundation and helping other families grieving from the loss of a child. You are my angel sweet bear and I love you more than you ever know. As the days pass I feel like I am forgetting your sweet smile. I look at the pictures of you all around our house and wonder if it was a dream that you were actually here with us. I wish this wasn't the case. I wish you were here to cuddle, hold and love in flesh and blood but for now, until we meet again, I will have to hold your sweet memories in my heart and take a deep breath and breathe in knowing you are always with me.
|I hold you in my heart since I can't hold you like this anymore. I carry your heart with me. I carry it in my heart.|
Your one and only mom