So many emotions have hit me in the days leading up to Silas’ birthday, June 25th. In the first weeks of June, I felt so much joy, remembering the season of last year and the excitement his anticipated arrival was bringing. I thought June would be so terribly hard, but was surprised to feel that the good was in the forefront…that the beautiful memories were so vibrant.
But, those memories were muddled because as a mother approaches her child’s first birthday, she usually looks at him, an almost one year old, and thinks, where did the time go? How can you be so big already? Was it really a whole year ago?
I have no comparisons to make with last year. My son is not here. But, even amidst the pain the separation brings, there is no denying the fact that he brought me great joy.
As I reflected on last year, I thought of how innocent I was in my joy. Would I have ever wanted to know the way it all would go?
No. Absolutely not.
I loved him wholly and completely every minute, never wishing a second away, for I knew it would pass in the blink of an eye. I would never trade that pure, innocent love for knowledge that, while it may have eased some of the trauma, would have caused those days to be bittersweet and fearful. I have no regrets in how we spent our time with Silas, and that is why we didn’t need to know.
Last year, I never could have dreamed we would be standing here today without our little Silas in our arms.
In the last few days, the heartache has been creeping in on the joy. I easily cry at the thought of him. I feel like all the months of healing are unraveling, but I’m sure this is normal…just a path to another layer of healing that will come with the passing of the storm of surviving his birthday without him.
I’m in uncharted territory, and feel very vulnerable because of the emotions that have been flooding my soul. How am I supposed to survive Silas’ birthday without him?
How is a mother supposed to feel as her son’s birthday approaches and he’s not here?
I feel devastated that my baby is not here.
I feel haunted by what could have been and what never will be.
I feel heartache because so much time has passed since I last held him.
I feel numb because I’m afraid of the hurt.
I feel confused because this is not the way it’s supposed to be.
I feel broken because my dreams for him have been torn away, but yet, there are still some I want to fulfill in his honor.
Most of all:
I feel joy because he blessed my life.
I feel love that reaches across the distance.