Somewhere in the world, a little boy turned one today. But I was not able to give him birthday kisses on his chubby cheeks. I was not able to plan his birthday party, or to decorate his birthday cake. As hard as it may be to imagine, remembering the birthday of my little boy in heaven is so much easier than this. At least with my first son, I know that the celebration he is having in heaven is far more beautiful than any I could plan on earth. While I miss both of my little boys desperately, the loss of my second son is so much more complicated to grieve.
I know not one other soul who has endured an adoption loss. Not one person who can guide me, or tell me what to do. I did not know how to mark this day, so I waded through it as best I could. And thanks to the love and support of my angel mom friends, the blessing and joy of my beautiful daughter, and the constant and unwavering companionship of my husband who walks this road with me, I survived the day.
Earlier this week, I drove by a party supply store. And as images of balloons and loot bags in baby boy colours flooded to mind, I dissolved into torrents of tears. The anticipation of this day has let loose the floodgates of grief held at bay by the need to function normally in my busy, complicated, and in most ways happy, joyful life. Today there has been no holding back the tears. Because today is not what it should have been.
Yes somewhere, my little peanut, you turned one today. And though I can’t hold you or kiss you, I can love and remember you. I can pray for you, and treasure my memories of you. There is a space in my heart that will always belong to you, my little Mr. Smiley. And that space feels bigger than ever today…