Lissie: 3 yrs, 11 mos
I'm almost to her day, Lissie's Day, again. I've been thinking about her a lot, but I haven't been that sad. Not yet anyway. There are other things, occupying my attention right now; happier things, more urgent things. And I don't feel guilty about this, as I would have once. I recognize that I need to embrace happiness when I can.
My grief has changed, recently, as grief does. I've moved away now, for good, from the "this can't actually have happened" phase: the phase where I keep expecting that maybe, just maybe, there not only really is an alternate universe where my children didn't die, but that one day I might wake up in it. Sucks to be you, version of myself that I switched with! Ha!
Yeah. Probably not going to happen.
I guess you would call it acceptance. My baby died. She doesn't need me anymore. She's not coming back. No matter how much I cry, no matter how much love for her I hold in my heart, no matter how many times I say her name... she's not coming back to me.
But she was here, for a little while. She was here, right here inside of me, as close as one person can be to another. She was here and I got to know her, even if it was just a teeny tiny bit, just the smallest sliver of knowledge. I got to be connected, however tenuously, to a bright-burning spark of life and glory. I got to give her a name. That was my privilege, my honor. And it's a beautiful name, for a beautiful girl -- a girl who simply couldn't stay. A girl I have to continually learn to let go of.
Her story is permanently intertwined with mine. She'll not be forgotten; I don't worry about that. Being dead does not make her more important to me than if she had lived, and if she had lived she would not be more important to me than she is now, dead. She's my daughter, I loved her, I love her still. The memory of her is tied to me like a balloon tied to my wrist. I don't need to grasp at it; I already know it's there. It moves when I move. We are connected.
Even if I let go, we are still connected.
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