November 13, 2019

Dear Eva,

I miss you so much. I’ve been struggling a lot lately and sitting down to write to you is very long over due. Today was a breaking point for me. I woke up with my fitbit reading my heart rate at over 100 and feeling extremely jittery. It’s been so long since I’ve woke up with an anxiety attack. I have no idea what caused it, this was the second day in a row. Your daddy say’s I’ve been restless and talking in my sleep. So I’m willing to bet I’m having bad dreams and blocking them out, because I don’t remember anything, just know I wake up more than shook up. I also found myself stuck on your last day this morning. The events of that day running through my head causing me to overthink every move I ever made as your Mom. I sit there and totally over analyze everything and convince myself I failed. It’s been a while since I’ve had a day like this and having those feelings today really scared me. I forgot how easy it is to slide into the darkness.

I’ve had many, many, good days strung together in a row. Almost months, really, other than a few tough moments around your birthday. We had been so busy with work and with life that I find I haven’t allowed myself to feel all of the feelings as they come. I’ll be the first to preach about how we need to feel the tough stuff and that it’s only detrimental to ourselves to push those feelings aside. I haven’t been taking my own advice but I also am not sure I even noticed I wasn’t letting myself feel the tough stuff until it got big enough that it came up on me and knocked me down. Boy oh boy did it knock me down something fierce. Completely took the wind out of my sails. I sat down at work this morning and couldn’t focus. I didn’t want to fake it today. I fought with all my might to keep that smile on my face today. I know my voice cracked a couple times on the phone today but I didn’t even care. I hate pretending that everything is roses all day everyday.

I often feel so forgotten about. I feel like everyone around me expects me to be “good” all the time. I know that isn’t mostly the case but it sure feels like it sometimes. Life has moved on for everyone else and it hurts my over sensitive heart more than it probably should. I find so many little things really hurt my heart, especially on days like today. I just wish my pain was noticed a little. A simple “How are you really feeling today?” or “I know this time of year must be hard.”, would do wonders. Grief takes time and grieving a child doesn’t end. It doesn’t get easier, time doesn’t heal all wounds. There will always be a plate missing at our table, there will always be a birthday without presents. Time doesn’t change that. So next time you encounter a loss mom or dad keep that in mind. Try to remember that just because it’s a random Tuesday for you, doesn’t mean it isn’t an extremely hard Tuesday for them.

“I can’t imagine.” “You are living a nightmare.” “I have no idea how you do it.” These are things I used to hear almost daily. It used to piss me off to no end. I friggen know I’m living a nightmare, please stop reminding me. These days I rarely hear that anymore and sometimes long for someone to acknowledge that my nightmare is not over. This nightmare is something my husband and I will live for the rest of our lives. Even though we know we aren’t alone, it’s so easy to feel so very isolated. I convince myself that nobody else understands. I convince myself that nobody wants to be around me because of my pain. I still feel like the elephant in the room most days. Like people still don’t know what to say to me. People very close to me still don’t bring you, Eva, up to me. I want nothing more than to hear your name. I want nothing more than you to be talked about. You were here and I won’t be forgetting that anytime soon, and I won’t be forgetting that you are gone anytime soon either.

I’m still just feeling so down on myself today. It’s hard to shake those feelings and it’s hard to put a smile on my face and pretend like I’m fine. It’s hard to find the silver lining when you are knocked completely on your butt. I need to remember how far I’ve come and how well I’m doing. Even when it feels like I haven’t made it anywhere. Even when the days seem as dark as the first days. I AM a great mom and I did not fail you. You chose me to be your Mama and I chose the journey that came along with being your Mama. Even on my darkest day I wouldn’t trade a single day I got to spend with you in my arms. Everyday I had with you makes all the hard days worth it. Those days were the brightest days of my life. That brightness and those memories make these dark days just a little brighter.

Today your Nana knew I was having a tough day and she reminded me of a time when you were just learning to talk and to climb up on our laps. You would climb up onto me and then jump off. Over and over and over again. Finally I said to you, “Eva! Up or Down, pick one.” Instanly after that you would come up to us and say “Up or down Mommy!” or “Up or down Nana!” every time you wanted on our laps. It sure helped Mama see past the pain, even just for a few minutes today. The memories keep me going. The memories give me life. The memories make my heart a little less sore. Grief is the price we pay for deep strong love.

I love you to Heaven and back baby girl. Thank You for 884 of the best days of my life. Thank You for sending me the signs and the encouragement that you know keeps me going everyday. You always will be my favorite Turkey Bird!

Love and Kisses,

Your Mama.

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4 thoughts on “November 13, 2019

  1. A great reminder, Jess, and for me, the information I was scared to ask. Yes, scared. I saw you the other day and wanted to give you a hug. And I didn’t. My brain went “what if she’s barely holding together today? what if I make her cry and she doesn’t want that right now?”

    I was wrong. In soooooo many ways. First of all, who gives a crap if we cry. We should cry. Whenever we need to. And second, there are so many times we need a hug. Next time I want to give someone a hug, I am ditching the nonsense second-guessing in my head. When I need a hug, I hope someone hugs me, no matter what might happen next.

    And most of all, I’m sorry. Sorry I didn’t ask how you were. Sorry I didn’t give you that hug. And so sorry you didn’t get even one more day. But know that it most definitely was NOT your fault. Some things don’t make sense, and never will. Your angel is one of those things.

    So, I’m sending you a virtual hug. A big squeezy one.

    Liked by 1 person

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