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Archive for July, 2011

scary thoughts

Dear Jakey,

Usually when I write to you I have a real purpose – something real specific I want to share with you. Today I have nothing specific but the overwhelming desire to try to connect with you in any way I can. I have our routines and all that but I have such a hard time with just missing you. I hear from others how connected they are with you and how often they see you or feel messages from you. And yet I struggle with that – me, your mama – the one who knew you best and spent the most time with you – doesn’t see or hear the cardinal as often as others or see your messages everywhere. And I guess for the most part that is probably good. I would probably question it more if I saw you all the time. And it reminds me about how your brother is so good with everyone else and I am the one who always sees the crazy. Not as much any more but that whole concept of babies being worse for their own mothers. I feel like that is what goes on with you and me now – you know I will always love you and need you and you take care of others first. But with that being said I find myself some days just overwhelmed with loss. I see our pictures and it all feels like a different lifetime. It is all so far away. And so scary. I don’t want our life to seem far away Jakey. I need to always feel you close and remember your different expressions and your touch. It scares me that I won’t. Or that I will get used to this life – this new, different life. This life that I didn’t ask for and didn’t want. I just want you back.

Love,

Mommy

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Mama’s Boy

Dear Jakey,

Yesterday I wore a shirt that I have worn many times but as I was folding laundry I looked up and over our bed is that big canvas of the four of us last Easter (2010). And it that picture I was wearing the shirt I was wearing yesterday. And I was holding you. And all I could think about was that once upon a time you had leaned up against it and it just about broke my heart, again.

It is so hard without you here Jakey. I have the same pictures on the ledge above the sink. There is one new one that I had printed for your funeral but other than that they are the same – the one from your 3rd birthday at the Museum of Natural History which will always be one of , if not my favorite family photo. And the one that got me last night was the one of you on my lap in Montreal on the duck boat. Your are wearing your green and brown button down – the same one Ethan wore on his very first day at Beagle School so many years ag0 – and you are just chilling with me. As I was doing dishes last night, that one just took my breath away.

And then Daddy called me just a few minutes ago and told me what he heard on the radio. They had the top three names for boys who end up being “Mama’s boy” and guess what 2 of the 3 names were?  Jake and Alexander , can you believe it??? – it was in your destiny buddy – you and I were bonded from the very beginning. Your name was pretty clear to us early on – not the same lists and conversations as with figuring out Ethan’s name. We just knew Jake (NOT Jacob) was the name for you. And that is just another reason why I am so empty without you.

Love,

Mommy

 

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summer

Dear Jakey,

I sort of don’t know where to start. I just know I have so much to tell you and as we plug along here on Earth it remains so hard. Life happens in waves now and it isn’t always easy to ride them out. We did a lot of work this weekend on your grave. Saturday we planted and moved the tree. Sunday we added edging and finished up. It is just about done now. It looks beautiful but there is something so completely devastating about it.

I’ve been thinking a lot about how different things are this summer. We were in the middle of some super hot days last week. Really really hot. The kind of hot that would have been hard for you. And I would have been a major pain for everyone worrying about if you are getting enough water and keeping you hydrated. And I think it has made me extra sad lately because it is just another one of the many things that are so noticeably different. And I don’t want to have to miss you anymore. I just want to be with you. I am jealous sometimes of Ethan and how he processes the loss. He talks so much about you and was explaining to me this weekend that sometimes when he is here on Earth, his head leaves and goes to Heaven so he can talk and check on you. He said it happened everywhere, like sometimes when I thought he was at school, he really wasn’t. He was with you. I wish that I could always have the same strong blind faith. For me, it is part of the waves again. Sometimes faith comes so easy and other times it just takes more work.

Amy Winehouse died. I bet you remember Ethan singing “Rehab” back at our old house. He was only two and used to run around singing it while Karen worked with you. I can picture those days. And even then we knew that she might not make it long. I didn’t know then the gut wrenching feeling of loss so intimately so it back then it was a tragic story in the most general of terms. Now it is so much sadder than you can imagine. Death of pretty much anyone affects me so much now because we now really understand the forever part and the having to continue you on without the most important people in your life. And to do it in the wrong order. Burying kids should never happen and regardless of why it happens you just know that there are people trying to pick up the pieces.

Love,

Mommy

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Dear Jakey,

I hope you enjoyed your show this afternoon. Your brother never ceases to amaze me. He slept late today so I couldn’t take him to see you before soccer. Then after lunch he wanted to know if I had seen you and when I told you I did he was mad that I saw you and he didn’t. So off we went to see you. And on the way he couldn’t stop talking about wanting to show you what he learned in soccer. And then when he got there, he wanted to practice before you saw. He wanted to make sure you weren’t sneaking a peek until he was ready. I had to tell you not too look – I assume you still listen to your mommy up in Heaven, right?  Anyways, I sat on the bench and watched Ethan show you his moves. And it was another one of those moments where I was broken-hearted that this is what our life is like now, but also proud that we keep you as such an important and vital part of our family. We love you Jakey, so very much!

 

XOXO

Mommy

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symbols

Dear Jakey,

We are home from Cali and from all travels for a few weeks. Next stop is Plum Island which I can’t help but be a bit of a nutcase about. I am excited to go there because for the last 4 summers it has been such a part of our family tradition. I love our routines and the beach outside our door and the waves outside our window. I love seeing Tuck and spending time with her. I love the Mexican restaurant in Newburyport and the beers on the beach. I love how we found it because it was a lowkey place to take you. But now we are still going there when the reason we started going  is gone. I am not sure how to navigate this vacation without you. Without you in the shark tent or in the red stroller. Without you on my lap on the porch or the decks. Without worrying about the heat. Without you. We are staying at a different house on a different part of the island which may or may not help. Ethan and Sarena are so excited which will help. It is all just so difficult Jakey.

Saturday we travelled for so long to get home. Our flights were screwy – from San Jose to Orange County to Vegas. 4 hour layover than home. Just a long day. And I kept seeing you. On the plane from San Jose to Orange County was a mom and her baby on the seats across the aisle from me. And for some reason I saw the baby’s hands. I don’t know if it was a boy or girl but the hands, Jakey, were yours. The hands were laying perfectly, quietly and just mirrored yours. I remember watching your hands so often. I remember them when they were still. And loving the quiet and calm for you. And I remember they were often the first sign of a seizure. Your hands told such a story and I loved them. And seeing this little baby’s hands on Saturdays brought tears to my eyes. That is the hardest thing about life without you. I can never anticipate when my heart will break again.

It happened later on Saturday when we were in the airport. I kept hearing baby’s cry and it got under my skin. Not in an aggravated way but in a sad way. I remembered you crying and how happy that would make us – which was so strange to many but so symbolic to us. It meant you were awake and feeling and each time you did it we couldn’t help but smile. And it reminded me of your femur break – which in retrospect might be the night my heart started to break. And it reminded me of how much we missed your cry when it wasn’t there for so long. And it is just another reminder of  something else I will never experience since you left me.

Your bench is in buddy. About time. Now we can plant flowers around the stone and the bench. Hopefully in the next few days we can do it. I am thinking red begonias are the way to go.

With so much love,

Mommy

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no reports

Dear Jakey,

So, our CA visit is coming to an end.It is weird because I have missed you, but in such a different way than I expected. I thought it would be another bittersweet change where I fought the internal battle between having fun and being sad, but it wasn’t that at all. It was even weirder and harder. I have never been here – to Sarena’s life- with you. Ethan and I have made this journey three times and each time you were with Daddy. And that is the difference I felt. I kept wanting to call Daddy and get a report. I wanted to know every minute and I couldn’t quite relax knowing you weren’t here. And each time I wanted to know how you were doing brought about an awful reminder that you were in Heaven.

And I think that yesterday brought a full moon on Earth. Or close to it at least. And because as a former teacher I put such weight on the power of the moon and what it does to kids – I wonder if it didn’t affect your brother somehow. He talked so much about you and in ways that I couldn’t always deal with. We were in a Japanese restaurant and there was a warrior costume and he talked about you wearing it. He talked about you losing air and dying. He brought you up in so many ways that I didn’t see coming. But I will continue to be grateful when it happens because I feel better when I know you are so much in people’s hearts. You are so much in mine that some days keeping conversations with those still with me on Earth is so hard. I feel like an alien going through the motions of being polite and “normal” when I am so far from it.

Tomorrow brings a long travel day and I am sure it will bring with it some anxiety. I am anxious to visit your grave, even though I know you have had a ton of visitors and your damn bench still isn’t in. What is up with that? And I will remember vividly my calls to Daddy checking in on you. I miss you so much and can’t imagine how long I need to wait to be with you again. It mostly kills me. I try to plug along with this thing called life but when it comes to it I just don’t know how to be without you. Your 4 years, 7 months and 4 days with me forever changed me and I can’t adjust to life without it. It is like life before never happened or didn’t really matter because all I think about it you.

Love,

Mommy

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adjustments

Dear Jakey,

We went to Montreal this past weekend. It was pretty amazing. And I mostly did okay. Sunday before we left we walked all around Old Montreal, which was really your Montreal. We went to Notre Dame and I swear while I was standing in the back and mass was going on I felt you with me. I teared up and I really missed you. I could almost picture myself in the front of the chapel and I could remember being there with you so vividly two years ago. I remember what I was wearing and what I think you were wearing. And we got there in time for the end of mass so I got communion and we lit a candle and it made me feel a little better. Or at least a little closer to you.

When we got back and picked up Ethan he had bought a noisemaker thing with Abue. It is this long tube thing that makes 5 different kinds of noises. He loves it. It sort of freaked me out a little when I first saw it though because it seemed like something that Xavier or Karen would have used with you. It was a total you toy. And now Ethan uses it to talk with you. He seems to think that you can hear him better in Heaven. And when he made those connections to you it was one of those times where I was simultaneously happy and sad.  This morning I heard him in his room calling out your name while he was swinging it around making some crazy sounds. I hope you hear him!

And then that brings me to our cardinal sightings. Ethan sees you everywhere. And so do lots of other people. Heath sees you at her house and Susan sees you at hers. And today you were all around our backyard. Daddy thinks you live in the bushes near our deck. I like you close and near our friends.

Tomorrow we leave for California to visit Sarena. It will be strange with the three of us going. Another thing that can happen now. Usually it is just Daddy that goes or Ethan and me together that goes. Ethan is so excited that we can all go now but we all notice how different it is. And while I think it will be fun I would still want it back the way it was because that would mean you were still here.

Heath sent me a note the other day talking about how she was so sorry that I had to miss you. I think that is the part that keeps getting worse because the longer we are apart the more I miss you. And the more things I miss about you. And the more scared I get of my whole life without you. It just hurts not to have you here.

I love you my little buddy. And I miss you so very much. A new angel was buried next to you on Friday. Her name was Olivia and she was two months old. I read about her in the paper and then read that she was buried at your place. She’s not too far from you. Take care of her.

Love,

Mommy

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