There is a little boy who follows me.
Everywhere I go and in everything I do. He’s a just a little guy with lots of soft brown hair and big brown eyes that sparkle. He has a great big smile with a few teeth popping through. He’s just learning to walk and he loves to play with his toys.
When I wake in the morning to an empty day and a broken heart, he’s sitting in his crib, grinning from ear to ear, so happy to start another day.
As I clean the house just so I have something to do, he’s on the floor with toys, nosily slamming them around and “talking” to his stuffed friends.
When I carry the laundry up to our room, wishing to see small blue things in the basket, he’s in front of me, excitedly learning to master the art of climbing up stairs; so proud when he reaches his goal.
While I’m shopping for groceries, trying to avoid making eye contact with anyone, he’s the little guy in the seat in front of me. Big eyes taking it all in. Holding on tight and claiming “Dada” for everyone to hear. Waiting for his next kiss and caress from mama.
When my husband comes home to a sad wife and a quiet house, he’s the one who delightfully falls into his arms for tons of hugs and kisses. He’s so excited to “tell” his daddy all about his day.
When I’m making dinner because I have to, not because I care, he’s in his highchair, banging his cup and bowl and throwing his puffs all over the floor with glee.
As I sit down to face another empty night, he’s the little one in jammies, holding up books, smelling of a bath and ready for good night kisses.
As I lay down on my pillow, unsure of how I made it through another day without him, he’s the little one quietly breathing in his crib, dreaming of the new and wonderful things he’s experienced that day.
Every day he’s always there, a shadow of what should have been. A loved little guy who was taken away.
A reminder every day of what life should have been.
Sometimes I wonder if I’m the only one who sees him there.