For as long as we live, they too will live, for they are now a part of us as, We remember them.” – Sylvan Kamens & Rabbi Jack Riemer
I remember the day you were born like it was yesterday. I was terrified, alone in the pre-op room, waiting to be wheeled into surgery. I had never been in an operating room before, and my excitement to meet you was battling valiantly with my nerves over the impending C-section. I didn’t know what to expect, and I was so afraid of the pain I might feel.
Elvis was playing on the radio in the OR – it’s his birthday too as you know – and I kept asking the nurses when your daddy would be there. “He’s the one in the green shirt with an Irish accent,” I told them more than once. They reassured me that they wouldn’t bring the wrong husband to the room.
Still, I was rigid with fear when it was time for the spinal block, barely relaxing enough to let the anesthesiologist work. The nurses were almost done prepping me for the start of the surgery when your father was finally allowed in the room. He was suited in green scrubs with a mask over his face. I’ve never been happier to see him.
And then it was time. Pulling, pressure, and finally you were here. The doctor held you over the surgical curtain so I could see you, laughing that you were a big baby (9 pounds, 14 ounces!) and that the C-section was the right choice. In fact, one of the nurses nicknamed you “Mr. Big” on the spot. She whisked you off for your first tests and bundled you up, then she put you on my chest. You were perfect in every way. I didn’t want to take my eyes off you. You cuddled into me, and I started to cry.
That was the moment when I discovered how deep love could be.
I handed you over to your daddy, and he a joy in his eyes that I had never seen before. I think it was the proudest moment of his life. Then, the two of you were taken out of the room, so the doctors could close the incision. The anesthesia made me sick, and the time seemed to stretch on forever. I just wanted to be where you were.
I still just want to be where you are.
I don’t know how ten years have passed since that day you made me a mother and changed my world forever. I don’t know how I have survived ten years without you in my arms. A minute without you was too long, never mind a decade.
Before you were born, I was scared of all of the wrong things. Surgical pain can’t compare to the pain of your loss. Anxiety over impending motherhood holds no candle to ongoing grief.
For ten years, I have been writing letters to you on your birthday and angel day. Trying to fill the void between us with words. But no word is big enough to express my love. No word can convey how much I miss you. While words can paint a pretty picture, they simply can’t bring you back to me.
And so I cling to my memories. I close my eyes and try to turn back the years. I try to recall all of the little moments that I am so scared that I will forget. The curls in your hair. The soft pressure of my kiss on your forehead. I try to calm my mind and remember how you looked at me with so much love and trust. I am so sorry that I couldn’t keep you safe in my arms, baby boy.
I wish more than anything you were celebrating your 10th birthday here with me. Know that we try our best to celebrate and remember you every day, the baby you were and the guiding force you’ve become.
Happy 10th birthday, my sweet angel.
Loving you always and forever,