I wish you didn't die.
I miss you so much, there is not a word in any language that I know that can describe this feeling, this ache. I pretend to be normal, I do normal things, I let life distract me because it must. If I peel off this skin I have made for myself, this protective layer I am raw, like a burn victim who has had the debris removed I am wet and sticky, my nerves exposed I am pure pain, I am vulnerable and normal life can infect me and kill me.
Today a sliver peeled away when I wasn't paying attention. I remembered so many things, small things that were stored away in me; the blue cotton dress that wasn't really you but it was easy, it made it easy for me, listening to the rocket CD in the sunroom, Noah writing you a poem on the magnet board, you ordering books on Amazon that would arrive after you left. I remembered the last car ride...I can't breath, it has been too long.
I have learned to smile in all the right places, to say what people want to hear, to act like I am stronger than I am. Your brothers and sisters are a balm for my heart they keep my body here and what is left of me alive. The real me left when you did, she curled up into a little ball, she receded into the darkness, she is quiet and alone, I keep her safe, I feed her stories, I tell her not to worry that someday it will be Ok, someday we will be with you again and this will all be a bad dream.
I dream of a heaven, my heaven, where I will have a big house full of light, no doors, just a path that leads inside. It will be filled with large rooms, moms and babies all transitioning in and out, it will be a hospital of sorts, a place to heal, to sleep, to recover, to decide. My job will be to provide a place where it can happen.
You will have your heaven and someday your brothers and sisters will too, even Claire will have her heaven and I will get to know her there. We will all drift in and out of each others place, and it will be beautiful we will remember and learn and celebrated. No time, no space, just being here or there or everywhere at one time. It is comforting, I wish I could paint it or write it or visit it in my dreams.
Tomorrow we will go to the cemetery, I don't know what kind of flowers I will bring, maybe I will find the tulips...all yellow. I will bring you fruit and chocolate cake and we will play music. There will be tears for you body baby, tears because we miss you so much, tears because it isn't fair and there is nothing we can do but cry.
I went to the bookstore today, bought a little book that called to me, I am going to write more I promise. I felt you there, just for a moment, I felt myself melting, I repeated silently, I am here Stevie, I am right here.
You are here now, its not the you I knew before, its the after you, I have learned to love this you, the one I can't touch or kiss, a voice I can't hear with my ears, but I smell you when I walk past a flowering fruit tree, and when the sun warms your room. I see you when there is a full moon, when the sky turns pink, in Noah's eyes...your music still plays in this house, your books are right were they always have been, all those words, all those pages you touched, it is almost like touching you.
Sometimes I am afraid I am forgetting, but I don't I am just not strong enough to peel away my costume and expose myself to the air and light, to feel all that pain, it is unbearable but I would rather have that than nothing so I protect it all, keep it sealed up tight, wrap it around "me" like a blanket there in the quiet, there in the waiting place.
I love you, with all my heart, with my fractured soul. It doesn't stop, it never changes, it is love.
Don't be too far away, eight years, eight years, eight years...