Each year that passes, I fear.
Each year that gets me further away from when my son was born, I fear.
Each year that gets me further away from when my son died, I fear.
Each year scares me.
Each year I fear I will forget my son.
Each year I fear forgetting:
- A detail that is all him.
- A detail that is all me.
- A detail that is all his daddy.
- A detail that is a combination.
- The weight of him in my arms.
- The feel of his skin.
- Playing with his toes.
- Holding his hand.
- Watching each breath.
- Seeing his eyes for the first time.
- Seeing him in his Nebraska Huskers beanie.
- All the love I had and still have for him
- All the moments I got to hold and cuddle him.
- The tricks he would play on his doctors and nurses.
- Watching others hold and cuddle him.
- How heart wrenching painful that time was.
- All the tears I cried.
- The beeps of all the machines he was on.
- Every moment I spent by his bed.
- Changing a diaper.
- Giving him a bath.
- Wanting to do anything to bring him home.
- That there was no other place that I wanted to be then right by him.
- His soft blond hair.
- His long legs.
- His long fingers.
- His long toes.
- The night we spent in his room.
- The meetings with his doctors.
- The talks with his nurses.
- Getting excited each morning to go spend the day with him.
- The heart break of leaving him each evening to so home to try to get some sleep.
- The pain I was in but pushing it to the side because it was about him – not me.
- Any of my time and his time in the NICU. That is all that we have of him. 12 days.
I have photos. But they just are not the same.
I wish I could stop time so I could just take all these moments and just remember. Put them somewhere safe so I always have them.
I fear that with age I will forget. We all know that as we grow older memories fade whether we want them or not. Something we have no control over.
I do think about him every day but it is not the same as thinking and remembering everything that occurred for those 12 days.
Those 12 short days.
As time slowly pushes me along – further and further away from him, I fear losing him all over again. All I have are my memories and even now 7 years later I can feel little bits and pieces of these memories slipping through my tightly clinched fingers as I try so desperately to maintain that hold on them.
I fear forgetting because I don’t want it to feel like I love him less because he is gone.
I fear forgetting because I don’t want to feel like I am losing my grasp on him.
I fear forgetting because I don’t want to let him down.
I fear forgetting because he is still my son.
I fear forgetting because this is all I have left of him.
I fear forgetting.