Dear Parker

Dear Parker,

                I miss you, Parker Marie! I’ve been thinking a lot about you lately. I think you are a pretty cool little kid. I miss seeing your dance routines and your funny faces. I miss hearing your jokes and your giggles and laughter. I even kinda miss watching you put your parents through the ringer with your super amazing temper tantrums. I’m still waiting for you to turn green and go all “The Hulk” on everyone. Unfortunately, one day you’ll learn you are only allowed to do those sort of things in your head, and it’s not nearly as fun.

                I love your smiles and hugs and how we can tell you we only love you a little bit and you’ll say, “Noooo! This much!” and spread your arms as wide as they can go. I love how whenever you have a sleepover at my house we read the cookie pop-up book and before we turn the last page when the gingerbread house pops up we look at each other and grin and ask, “Ready?!” I also love how you now think your daddy should buy you a gingerbread house to live in.

                I’ve been wondering and imagining what it would have been like for you if Rory hadn’t gone to heaven. I know you were so excited to meet her and to hold her. While Rory was in the hospital you would pretend you were holding her in your hands and taking care of her. You even gave your Mom crap one time because you were convinced she had dropped your pretend Rory. Your mom told me one time she caught you having a tea party with Rory. I love that you love her.

                Whenever you are with me you are always willing to sit and look at the Rory book with me. You love to slowly flip through the pages and point to her and say things like, “So cute!” and “Beautiful Rory.” And how you think it’s so hilarious in one picture where Rory is facing the other way and you giggle and point and say, “Rory’s backwards!!” And then sometimes you’ll look at me and sigh and say, “Rory died.” And I’ll say, “Yes, she did, and that’s very sad. But she’s in heaven with Jesus.” And then you say, “I’ll hold her next time.”

                I love that. Next time. Yes, in our next life, in Heaven, in eternity. Next time.  I know right now you are a little obsessed with death and trying to figure out what it all means. I know in your own little way, you are grieving. You were playing at my house, playing with toys when all the sudden you let out one of your big dramatic sighs. Your mommy asked you what was wrong and you said, “I’m sad.” Your mom asked you why and you answered, “Rory died.”

                I’m sad too. But you know what soothes my heart? Knowing that you remember and love Rory. Even though you never met her, she will be a part of your earliest memories. You know she is a part of our family. You know she always will be, and she will always be remembered and missed.

                So here’s to you, kidlet. Auntie misses you! Thanks for being so awesome. Love you lots.

                Love, Auntie Katie (Or Auntie Keys, or whatever it is you are calling me these days. <3)  


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