My Dear Sweet Turner
It has been 43 weeks since our last perfect day together. 299 days. It pains me to write that out. Since I knew of your existence, I have now lived longer without you than I did with you. Even writing that down takes my breath away. Acknowledging that a mother has lived longer without her child than she did with him is heartbreaking.
It has been the longest and yet shortest 43 weeks of my life. Most of those days have been spent wondering constantly how I’m going to survive this. Wondering how all of this has happened and how this is my daily reality. No mother should have to wonder about how she is going to live without one of her children in her arms.
It has been over a month since I have physically written to you. And you and I know that I speak to you everyday though the words I speak aren’t written. My heart and mind are constantly communicating with you and you are never not in my mind. So much has happened in the last month and my heart has been to heavy to physically write. The weight I have felt in my chest these last several weeks feels like an elephant most days. Constant heaviness and a mind that never seems to shut off.
I guess the most accurate way to describe the last month and a half is just surviving. Taking it one day at a time. Christmas was a few weeks ago and I literally felt like I was just there physically but mentally, emotionally and spiritually I was somewhere else. Your father and I tried our best to make Christmas wonderful for your brothers and sisters, but I knew we all felt the massive void in our lives last month because of your absence.
I had some special ornaments made just for you to hang on our tree each year. Each year your brothers and sisters always seem to make an ornament for the tree and so I’ve decided that each year you will add an ornament on our tree as well. Although your ornament will never be handmade just by you, but rather it will be bought with a broken mother’s heart knowing this is the only way for you to add to our tree each year.
We also had some special friends purchase beautiful ornaments in your memory that I cherish. I’m so blessed to have such amazing people surround me who aren’t afraid to speak your name and give us such priceless gifts.
I think the hardest part about this past Christmas was the fact that your headstone was finally placed 3 days before Christmas. It was placed on the morning of December 22nd, on your your father’s and mine 13th wedding anniversary. It was a bittersweet moment and day. Your father and I spent so much time trying to have a special monument made that would speak volumes, just by looking at it, on how much we love you, care for you, and miss you. That you were and are so loved and missed. This would be the only earthly possession we would end up ever being able to purchase for you. It is absolutely beautiful.
On the day it was placed your father and I wept. Seeing your name etched in stone was so overwhelming. I never would have dreamed when I married the father that we would be having one of our children’s headstone placed on our 13th wedding anniversary. That we would watch a precious stone being placed above where my our son’s body lay to rest. That the only thing I’d be able to look at when I’m near you body is a granite slab, with a lamb on top, over a pile of dirt knowing your body just lay mere feet below. Never being able to hold you even though I know you’re so close to me.
It was a hard day, but I’m so glad that we no longer have to wait on your headstone being finished. Having it completed felt as if that was the last thing pertaining to your death that needed to be “completed”. The final piece. And all that is left to do now is grieve everyday and figure out how to live without you. An impossible task a mother and father have to bear when their child dies.
Then the New Year came. And I feel like I’ve lost another part of you all over again. The year of your life and birth. The year that I delightfully carried you anxiously awaiting your arrival. The year that was yours and only yours. It’s now over and I can’t say, “I had a baby this year” or “my son died this year”. Now it will be “I had a baby last year” or “my baby died last year, 2 years, 5 years, etc… ago”.
This month has been hard. Knowing where to turn now. Hoping and praying this year will bring some forms of healing and that I might start to feel like I’m living and not merely existing. I am trying my best everyday to put one foot in front of the other, but there are some days where I feel like I’m stumbling backwards. Where rhe grief is so heavy and the pain of losing you is overwhelming.
I wish I was strong. I wish I knew how to do any of this living without you. I wish so badly there was some magical formula one could take to know how to proceed in life. All I have been trying to do is take one day at a time, knowing each and everyday is so different. I’ve been trying to find my faith again. Trying to be close again to Heavenly Father. Trying my best to understand the things I know I won’t ever understand while my feet are firmly planted on this earth. Trying my best to be a good mother to your siblings and a good wife for your Dad. Trying to help others who need help and who are hurting as well. Trying to serve others and think about other people and not just myself. Trying to keep your memory alive so others know about you and what a wonderful little person you were.
I’m trying my best Turner. Everyday. I hope one day you’ll look at me and be proud of the mother you have and all I’ve done with my life. I hope one day your siblings will look at me and be able to say they know with all their heart I love them beyond measure, took care of them to the best of my ability, and always did my best to show them right from wrong. I hope one day they can look at me and say “I’m proud to have you as my mom.” That they will think of me as a great mom and that the kisses and hugs won’t ever end.
I miss you son. And the word “miss” won’t ever accurately describe the miss I have deep in my soul for you.
I love you my dear sweet boy.
Love Always and Forever,