One year, 11 months, and three days to be exact. That's how long it's been since my son, my first child, died and was born. I jumped on board this project little late last year, a project in which you document right where you are in your grief. My post last year still holds true today. Finley was only weeks old when I wrote that and in this last year, while I have loved getting to see that sweet and adventurous boy grow and develop, it has shown me first hand what we have missed out on, what Cale has missed out on. I wrote about how my grief has changed, but was still a part of my life. And that will never change.
Reading through some other blogs from people who have written about their grief recently makes me feel like I'm cheating in a way. I read these thoughts and feelings and realizations and I have some of the exact ones myself. So I read and think "oh, I should write about that too" and really this may come across as a compilations of how so many others who have lost a baby feel, but that's because the common thread that I'm seeing throughout all these blogs is that no matter how much time has elapsed since we met and said goodbye to our children, no matter how many other children we have been blessed with since, it doesn't change the fact that we miss the ones who are not here. We love them. We ache for them. And that's right where we will always be.
With the upcoming move and upcoming birthdays there is a lot going on in our lives. I have a son who is about to turn one and I am so sad (but thankful) that my baby is growing up. But I also have a son who should be turning two and I'm so sad that my baby is not here. This last year has reinforced what I suspected early on, that I will always yearn for the milestones that Cale never reached. Shortly after losing Cale, a man approached my mom at her church in Arizona and told her that he and his wife lost a daughter who would have been 50 years old. He told my mom that he thinks about her every day. And I suppose that's just how it is. Our children become a part of our lives in a unique way, but they are still there. Even 50 years later. I have been able to have this beautiful and at times fun and happy life in the short time since losing Cale, but he is always on my mind. I guess that is the biggest change from last year - that I have been able to figure out a way for him to be woven into our story and become a part of our daily lives without actually being in them. And maybe I didn't even figure that out so much as it just happened.
I recently got an email from a girl I went to school with and in it she said, "When I think of Cale, I think of possibility. It's both sad and
optimistic at the same time. Obviously those possibilities that he will
not be able to realize because he left too soon, but also the
possibilities that will come because he did live. Cale gave you
Finley. What an incredible gift, full of possibilities. He gave you
motherhood and let you know that indescribable love for the first time. He makes me see the world for all of its
It kind of amazes me to think of all these lives that Cale has touched and words like that give me hope that his life will continue to reach others and help me reach out in return. It's wonderful to think of possibilities because of him. So I'm almost two years out from the most heartbreaking day of my life. But so much has transpired in those two years. While I've been in contact with lots of other people and stories that involve heartache and tragedy, in two years I have seen so much hope and love and unending possibilities . . . all because of my beautiful son Cale. And whereas I worried more a year ago about him being forgotten or how to incorporate him into our lives, I've gained more confidence this past year of how to do that and confidence in the fact that he won't be forgotten. It may not be what we had planned, but...