I'm Doing It
I haven’t been writing much. August went by in a blur. Kadon’s birthday, my sister’s visit, Rory’s birthday – August was an emotional month. And it has continued into September. I felt obligated to write a birthday post for Kadon. I felt obligated to write a birthday post for Rory. But I didn’t. Because I didn’t know how. I felt conflicted; like I didn’t know which set of emotions to pick and run with. Kadon’s post should be all happy, right? Rory’s post should be wistful and sad, right? But those emotions aren’t mutually exclusive. This year, their birthdays felt intertwined.
My darling boy, the light of my life, turned one. We celebrated. We sang Happy Birthday. We threw a party. We laughed. We ate cake. We opened presents. We took pictures. … We cried. Because she wasn’t there. Rory wasn’t there to try to blow out his candles, to try to steal his limelight and his presents. She wasn’t there, tottering around, beguiling people with her charm, and making various family members run after her.
His day was fabulous. His day was hard.
My sweet girl, my greatest sorrow, should have turned two. We stayed home. We made cupcakes. We visited her grave. We took her flowers. We sat under our Eeyore cloud and missed her more than anyone has ever missed anything. … We smiled. We took pictures of Kadon eating cupcakes. We waved Kadon’s hands while singing Happy Birthday to Rory. We gave him extra snuggles and kisses because we know – oh how we know – each child is a gift, but not a guaranteed one.
Her day was sad. Her days was brightened by my rainbow baby.
Do you see?
I felt like I was trying to grieve and celebrate at the same time. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. In fact, I know there’s not. I spend more of my time doing that than people may think. I guess I’m just saying for me, their birthdays were emotionally exhausting. Laughter, joy, excitement, pain, longing, and grief all rolled into one. And so their birthday posts are being rolled into one. Because to try to separate how I feel and properly categorize it with the corresponding event isn’t true. It isn’t real. I am happy and I am sad. Both of these statements are true.
To my Rory,
You are my first child, my beloved daughter. You unlocked my mama heart and unleashed a torrent of love I didn’t know existed. You are my sweet memory, my deepest longing. You are my tiny beauty with dark eyes and hair. You are a symbol of strength to me. The image of your fingers wrapped around mine is forever etched in my memory. I can still feel your downy hair tickling my chin as you snuggled on my chest. You are my unfinished story, my unbearable loss, my infinite sadness.
You are roses and butterflies. Thoughts of you may bring tears, but they also bring smiles. My heart is broken for you, my sweet baby girl. Losing you is something I will never fully recover from. And that is as it should be. This world is a broken place, and I, broken, am living in it. But I am living, sweet child. I am loving your Daddy and raising your little brother, and learning to love life after death. But one day, all these broken but beautiful things in this life will be made new. You already have been and you celebrated your 2nd birthday in Heaven; happy, healthy, and whole. See you up there, Sweet Pea.
To my Kadon,
You are my rainbow baby. You are my joy giver, my hope reborn, my faith rebuilt. (Well… rebuilding.) You are the light in the darkness, the rainbow after the storm. You are my reason for getting up each day. You are a breath of fresh air; you are a promise of goodness. You are my sweet snuggler, my big smiles, my infectious giggles, my happiness restored. (You’re also a pterodactyl screamer, temper tantrum flailer, obnoxious yeller, whiny pants pouter – but since this is supposed to be a mushy-gushy post we’ll leave that part out.)
Being your mama has been a huge part in breathing life back into me. You are the cutest, sweetest, and smartest baby ever to walk – or rather crawl/army crawl – this earth. You are a blessing. You were a ray of hope in my darkest days. You still are. When I am missing your sister, when I wander back into the sadness, when I open the door and step inside the room in my head where Rory is, where the sadness is, where the betrayal and hurt and anger and grief and mourning and longing is – you are always there with your sleepy smiles, your mischievous grins, your lunging hugs, your cutest giggles, to help me come back out. I love you, BudBud.
So, in conclusion, all I have to say is you can feel just as happy as you do sad. You can feel just as sad as you do happy. To say I feel 50% sad and 50% happy isn’t the truth. You can’t break down emotions into percentiles. There’s a reason they are called emotions and not logical calculations.
So how am I? I am so happy. I am bubbly, smiling and loving life as Kadon’s mama. I am so sad. I am struggling, I am depressed, I feel unable to cope with the loss of my little girl.
In other words, I’m fine. I’m okay. I’m doing this thing called life, with all its joys and heartbreaks. I’m doing it.