The time warp of grief and loss is so confusing at first. You relive moments leading up to and after the loss so often. The freshness is constant.
But lately, I feel like losing you was so long ago, Luke.
The other day, I came to a crazy realization, after seeing Lena's weekly development email from Babycenter. Lena will be exactly 39 weeks old on your second birthday. We lost you at exactly 39 weeks. Which basically means that she was born on the same day that you were conceived. On your second birthday, Lena will have been alive with us twice the amount of time that we got to spend with you.
That makes my head spin just thinking about it.
I guess that's probably why I feel like it's been so long since we parted. So much has happened. Our lives are so different. I know Lena so well now. She has a personality and she's adorable but challenging and trying to walk. So much happens in the first year of parenthood. And it goes by so fast, and it's so intense.
We missed all of this with you. I still think about that on a daily basis. I still wonder what kind of personality you'd have. If Lena looks like you would have. But I think the hardest thing to come to grips with is the fact that I'll forever grieve the family that we should have been. It's so hard to imagine our lives without Lena at this point...and without you being gone, she likely wouldn't be here. Without you being gone, I might never have had a daughter. Which is insane, because at this point, that's all I know. And though I have a son, I might never know what it means to raise a son.
Grieving all of that is still hard.
The happiness that Lena has brought us is immeasurable. I honestly don't think that I'd feel as much closure with what happened to you if she wasn't here. Which in turns rips my heart out for all of those parents who lose their babies and are never given another chance...
There's an element of healing in the fact that we still get to be parents. We still get to have all the experiences we should have had with you...just with your sister. It's another chance, thank god. Because I don't know what I'd be feeling today, nearly 2 years out, if we were still struggling.
The life that we live now puts you in the background so often. We know we are a family of 4, missing one, but outwardly, we're only a family of 3. I wish I could be one of the lucky ones that gets to count out their kids as they load them in the car, but I'll never get that chance.
We're making the best of what we have. I wish I had more time to plan something special for your second birthday, sweet boy. I've set up our team with this year's Walk to Remember, but that's about it.
So this is what it's like to be two years out from the day your life is forever altered. The dullness makes me sad, in a way. Fresh grief feels right. The sadness connects us. But here? I feel so much how you're still a part of me--a part of our story. But it's just a dull ache connecting us now.
For Luke's second birthday, I would love it if you're reading this if you could either join our team to walk with the OC Walk to Remember on October 4 in Tustin or make any donation in his name to our team, Luke's Skywalkers. Just to know that others are thinking of him in some way on his birthday on September 10 will make all the difference in the world...