Even though you couldn’t stay, I’m so glad you were here.
I miss you every day.
Tomorrow, your life is going to change in a way you never could have imagined possible and you will never be the same woman again. I wish I could warn you…but even if I could, it won’t change anything. You will still have to go through what you will tomorrow, that can’t be prevented. One thing I can tell you is this: you won’t know how you’re going to survive this nightmare, but you will. It will be dark for a while and you will feel like your life is not your own and I wish it weren’t going to be yours, but you’ll be okay. Even though you will forever remember how the light on the wall looks as you scream out in fear when you remember what happened and the emptiness that now lingers…I promise you, you will be okay. You will never forget Tim’s arms holding you tight and his soft whispers of, “It’s okay, I’m here.” He’s there and he loves you. Believe him. The tears that will wake you up in the middle of the night, clutching down on your chest and making it impossible to breathe: they’ll lesson to a silent streaming eventually. The tears of this loss are still there a year from now, but facing the day won’t be so hard. I promise. And please somehow tell yourself that this is not your fault. Let me repeat: This is not your fault.
The year ahead of you is going to be the most difficult you have known yet. There will be many dark days, days where you will not know how you’re going to make it another. Days where you contemplate things you never imagined you would. Your friendships will be tested and some will even end, but some grow so strong you are humbled by their presence and the love in your life. Your marriage will also be tested; but in the end, it will be stronger than you could ever have imagined. (Be patient, you got one of the good ones.) And I’m sorry to tell you that you will have to go through this again in a few months, and I am truly sorry. You will see the heartbeat and it will be beautiful. You made life. Even though it doesn’t continue to thrive: you did that. You’re capable of it — try and remind yourself of that. Even though other people can’t see it: you’re a mother. The next few months will be even harder than the previous 5, if you can believe it. But please remember: this is not your fault.
This year ahead of you is going to challenge you in every possible way, but in the end, you will be a woman you can be proud of. Even a year from now you will still be trying to figure out how to live as this new woman you’ve been forced to become. She’s someone you never imagined you’d have to be. And a year later, there are still tears. You are still fearful of what’s to come. But you are strong. You will fight this. And I believe that you – that we – will win.
Go tell Tim that you love him with all of your heart. That tomorrow will start a new chapter in your marriage and that it’s going to be scary and sad and painful…but you’ll make it because of one another. The sun will start to shine even in the tiniest of bits, giving you a glimpse into hope that someday will stick.
This is not our fault.
p.s. Tell that baby of ours we love him…that we’ll never stop loving him.
Dear Little C,
It may be a little early to start these letters to you, but I think you and I need to have a talk. See, it’s week 7 and this is a bit of a scary week for your mama. This is the week that I lost your big brother or sister, and I just don’t want to lose you, too. So you can you do mama your first favor? Can you stick around for me? I sure do love you, just like I loved your big sibling, and I’d really love to keep growing you so we can meet you in February. And I know that your brother or sister had to leave so that you could come, and I’m pretty sure it’s you that’s supposed to be with your papa and I. So if you could just stay right there in your warm little surroundings, that really would be swell. I promise to give you all the ice cream you want, okay? In fact, I’ll start tonight…how’s that sound? Now do you promise to grow big and strong, like a good little boy or girl? Because I know I’ve already said it, but I don’t think I will ever say it enough: your papa and I sure do love you and we want you so badly.
I’ll get to see you for the first time next week, on your Aunt M’s and S’s birthday. I’ll get to hear your strong little heartbeat and I’m pretty sure I’m going to cry. Which, speaking of crying, you might want to get used to that now….your mama is a crier. She comes by it honestly, as her mom, her sister and her grandmother are all criers! (Also, truth be told, your papa can be a crier too. Just don’t tell him I told you that.) But don’t feel like you have to be! Nope, you can feel free to change that right away starting with you, I won’t mind one bit! But you should know, even if you do cry (and you will), I’ll be right there to hold you. Always.