Last year we acknowledged Cale by releasing balloons with many other families who had suffered the loss of a child. It was a really peaceful day and having Finn in our arms definitely took the sting out a little. But only a little, because no matter how many children you have - if you have lost one, there will always be a void. Always. The other week at the library a woman was there with two boys. I asked how close in age they were. "11 months" she replied. It caught me off guard. Because my boys are only 11.5 months apart. And I wanted to tell her about our connection - about how I too had boys close in age. But I wanted more than that. I wanted her to see my two boys. I wanted them to be running around together like these other brothers were doing. And I know logically that we wouldn't have planned to have kids so close in age had Cale lived, but I don't just automatically go to a place of logic. I got to a place of emotion. A place where I think how wonderful it would be to have them both. A place where I just miss Cale and all that should have been. All that could have been.
Miles and I often see a strong resemblance in Finn to his cousin Carson. He squints and makes these faces that I've seen Carson make before. And while I love that connection, it does make me sad knowing that maybe his brother would have looked like that too. I could see a resemblance between Cale and Finn when Finn was just a little guy - I mostly noticed it when he slept, especially as a newborn. But as he has grown and developed into this little boy, I don't really see his brother anymore. I wish I did. I wish I knew what Cale looked like as a toddler. I wish I knew if he would have made those same silly "stink faces" where he squints his eyes and nose all at once. I wish I got to hold him close and kiss him goodnight. I wish so much for my firstborn. So much that will never come to fruition.
So instead I do what I can for him. I will light a candle and say a prayer. I will tell him I love him, and hold him close to my heart. Not just on October 15th, but especially then.
I'd love for you to join me.