Son. My precious, precious, beautiful Boy.
(How that word…Son…has taken on a far deeper, more beautiful meaning for me! The word Boy now priceless to me! A post for another day.)
It was on this day thirty eight years ago that you came into the world. My world.
Today is a hard, hard day.
I’ve been silently anticipating this day for a while now. The past few weeks, days, and hours preceding it constantly haunting me…dragging its chains over me…threatening to storm down on me. Every moment I could hear the rising sound of it coming. Thunderous. Hollow.
Death mingling with Birth.
It’s been closing in on me like a tsunami. Waves and waves of intense, bittersweet heartache.
I swear, Son, I think I might just drown. Allow it to swallow me up. With hopes that it would take me to the place where you are now.
Because I desperately, desperately long to see you. I want to put my arms around your neck. I want to see if even for one brief moment…the little boy grin and the sweet, red blush of love sweep over you as I smother and bathe your face with a thousand more kisses.
I want to hear your voice say to me again, “Aw, Mom…I love you, too”.
But I am painfully aware that it does not matter one bit what I want. My wants will never bring you back to me. I am forever stranded in this rising flood of sorrow.
Could anyone know the torment of such a loss? Selfishly, I think not. No. Never. Unless it’s been waded through up close and personal — no one could ever, ever know.
This thing called grief, OH! It’s so painful. Gut wrenching. All consuming. Sometimes I don’t know if I can do it. Keep my head above water. I just don’t know.
Yet every morning I lift my dead weight, heavy anchor of a head up from my pillow. Swing rubber numb legs out from beneath the comfort of safe, cocooning blankets, and allow my concrete laden feet hit the floor. Hoist myself up to face yet another day. Another day painfully aware that you are not here.
I rise each and every morning with the anticipation of the night attached to it. Not too soon at the end of today I can gravely crawl back into my cocoon. I’ll again find sweet relief in the sleeping. Because it’s then I might get a chance to see you again. Alive and well in my dreams.
I’m trying. I want you to know I am really trying. I know you’d expect more of me. All of these words about sadness and grief would really irritate you. If you were to sit with me today you would sternly and unapologetically tell me to Snap. Out. Of. It! For sure you would. I know you would look me straight in the eye and tell me to Rise Above.
You would tell me to stop treading water. Stop looking at what is behind…at what I’ve lost…and Move Forward. Stop swimming around. Get out of this ocean and dry myself off.
In fact, I’m shaking my head now because I can hear your voice tell me that I can’t allow this to overwhelm me…stop me. I can’t allow the tide to pull me under. You’d want me to represent you better.
You would have none of this dark, torrential, and heavy laden stuff.
I am now remembering that you were born fist first. Honestly, you were! You came into this world with raised, clenched fist…crying. Screaming. Declaring to this world that you were here. Strong. Independent. Defiant. An Alpha Male from day one. An Alpha Male to the end.
You wouldn’t tolerate self pity today. No, you wouldn’t. Not today. Not ever.
You’ve been gone now Two Months, Two Weeks, and Six Days.
Way too long. Longer to come. You will be gone for the rest of my life.
So…as a gift to you today. A present for your Birthday…I will Rise Up. Above this deluge…this monsoon of grief.
Wipe the snot from my nose and dry the tears from my eyes (though I cannot promise that I will not weep a little).
I will stand Soldier Tall and Proud and be Thankful…ever So Thankful.
I will Celebrate you.
Every day that you lived.
Thirty Seven Years, Nine Months, and Eleven Days.
With all of my flooded, overflowing, and poured out heart…I Love You, Son.
My Sweet Boy! How I miss you.