You were born perfect and whole early on a Sunday morning. The exact moment you were laid on my chest is forever etched in my mind, and something I think about many times a day.
Although you never came home from the hospital with us, I carry you with me everywhere I go.
I am devastated by your death, but grief is much more than sadness. It is anger, physical pain, frustration, confusion, jealousy and so much more. I often find grief creeps up on me and knocks the wind out of me; leaving me completely breathless when I least expect it. No matter how much time passes, I don't believe that will ever stop.
I read something recently that resonated with me:
"The New Year doesn't always feel like a new beginning. Instead, the passing of time is a reminder of how the world keeps going without our person in it."
Although the passing of time makes the sharp, needle-like pain dull slightly, it's a constant reminder of how you should be here but you are not. Every weekend is tough for me as it marks the passing of another week that you are not here with us. I can't believe an entire year has passed without you in it.
You looked like your older brother, Jack. I wish I could say more about you, but we didn't have the chance to know you. I often wonder what it would be like to have you here with your brothers, all four of my boys alive. What it would be like to see you all play together, all argue, juggling hectic bedtimes with four children under the age of 8. I am left with only what ifs. I will never know what life would have been like with you in it.
Every family picture will be missing you forever. Surprisingly, this is one of the hardest things for me to deal with, because when I look at pictures of my beautiful family - all I see is that you are not there.
I often feel like my body betrayed us. It failed to do the one thing it was meant to do, keep you safe. I don't think people quite understand how hard it is to know the only place you ever lived was inside of me and it is also the place you died. I will never know why you died, but I am not sure having an explanation would make any difference at all.
I like talking to strangers. I like when someone asks me how many children I have and I can honestly answer "four" without having to provide an explanation. I like to talk about you. I like to use your name. I like to hear your name. It all reminds me that you really were here and you really were mine.
I carried you for every second of your life and I will love you for every second of mine.
Happy birthday to you, my sweet baby.
Love you forever,
My third son, Luke, was born still on January 26th, 2020.