June 1st.

Another month begins with the painful reminder that you’re not here to experience it with us. My life has completely crumbled around me over the last week. Just as I take two steps forward I’m pushed back with such a force that it would knock an elephant to the ground without hesitation.

I woke up to news on Memorial Day that yet another family has been forced to face this awful pain within our community. I want nothing more than to reach for her, hug her so tight that she can’t breath and let her know she is not alone. I want to introduce her to the wonderful people that have graciously welcomed me and my grief into their lives. The ones who will always allow me to speak about Tyler’s life, even if it’s through tear filled eyes. I want her to know there are people who understand, although it doesn’t seem like it right now.

Facing our move at the end of this year frightens me. Having to explain myself to others who haven’t been around to know what’s happening. Meeting new families who will likely ask if we have any children out of habit and natural curiosity when meeting someone new. How am I to respond in these situations? If I cry, I frighten people and make them uncomfortable. I don’t aim to make others antsy when talking about our baby boy. He made such a huge impact on our lives that it comes naturally. So much love and adoration for such a tiny little man.

As a bereaved mother for almost four months now, all I know about myself is that I’m afraid. I’m so terrified of living my life without Tyler, I’m afraid of what’s to come when we are placed in a new surrounding with new people. I’m afraid that I’ll never see my baby again. I’m afraid to go back to work and face those who knew me through my entire pregnancy.

I feel like at this point in my life the world around me has resumed normal activity. People have moved on with their lives. I don’t know how to do this, and I’m not sure I ever will. I feel like so many people have forgotten the life changing loss that we have suffered and look down on me for having not picked myself back up yet. I know that Tyler will never be forgotten but I fear that the pain of his loss will. It’s impossible to express the agony you feel on a daily basis after losing such a vital part of your life. A life that you and your spouse/significant other have created. It’s a pain that I do not wish upon anyone, but pray that “outsiders” understand it will not ever leave those of us who have suffered through the death of their child.

I ask that you please be patient with us, open your heart to understandstanding and pray. Even now, approaching that four month milestone… Nothing fills my heart more than to know that we’re thought about and prayed for. That others hold enough love for us and baby Tyler to remember us during their quiet time with the Lord.

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Mothers Day.

Yesterday should have been a time for hugs, smiles, picked wild flowers, hand-made cards, maybe even a nice home-cooked family dinner. Unfortunately for me, none of the above seemed to fit into my life’s predestined plan. My Mother’s Day was spent weeping over the absence of the one person who gave me the right to celebrate such an occasion, my son. I never imagined the intensity of the hurt that would consume me on such a day. I was reminded of all that I’ve lost. My sweet sons smile, his overall spirit and those beautiful blue eyes that could melt your heart. I was reminded that even though I’m still a mother, I’m stuck here without my child. I sat here with tear filled eyes and empty aching arms, watching other mothers celebrate a day that I thought would be always be a cause for celebration; while I silently broke inside.

Grief is like riding a nasty wave. One minute you’re up and feeling good with the wind against your face, and the next you’re drowning and don’t know how to make your way back to the surface. I strive for those good days, I like to think when I can feel the warmth of the sun against my skin that Tyler is wrapping his arms around me from heaven; letting me know its ok to feel, to smile and to live another day. When the bad days come it’s all I can do to remind myself that he no longer hurts, he’ll never see, feel or experience the cruelty of this world. It takes every ounce of my being to pull myself together and get out of bed. Losing a child is not something I believe you ever get over, or move on from. It’s something you learn to live with. You will never not feel the pain, you just learn to tuck it away into a safe place that others can’t touch.

I’m honestly afraid to continue on without my Tyler. I feel like my entire world has been ripped from my fingertips. I think about a time when I can see him again and spend all of eternity holding his little hand. Some days I find myself wishing he could tell me what its like in heaven and reassure me that he’s not afraid or scared, that he has no pain and that he’s watching over us all in the presence of those who have gone before us. I think about him talking with his great-grandparents, watching and learning from his cousins Wendy and Tyler who also left us too early in life, and waiting patiently beside them all for the rest of us to catch up. Of course, I love to imagine him playing with all of the other angel babies who left their parents down here feeling the exact same way I am. The parents who are walking among us, and living daily with the deepest pain a human being will ever know.

So, here I sit. Typing out my thoughts and feelings, wondering how to even begin to heal from this life altering loss. Wanting so badly to be a beacon of hope to others, but honestly having no idea how to deal with my own grief. Falling apart on days like today, which would have been Tyler’s 4 month “birthday” and yesterday, Mother’s Day. Always wondering what could have been … what SHOULD have been, but forever remaining grateful for the three beautiful weeks I had with my little man. As much hurt and anguish as his death has brought me and my husband, our families and our friends, I would do this all over again if it meant just one more minute with him. I pray that Tyler leads me back to where I belong and shows me the path I should walk to honor his life and our Lord. I pray that my anger and emptiness begin to slowly dissipate and I can once again pray, and know that God hears the wants and needs of my heart. I want nothing more than to carry Tyler’s name all over this world, in my heart and through my faith, to help myself and others – as we stumble blindly down this path God has led us on.

Happy 4 months, Bubba. Your mommy and daddy are always loving you.

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10 tiny fingers & 10 tiny toes.