Some days it feels like it was just yesterday.
Other days it feels like it was a lifetime ago.
Some days the grief feels like it’s passing.
Other days it feels like too much to even think about, because the grief is overwhelming.
Last night, Sarah and I went through Micah and Judah’s Memory Box. We pulled out their hospital blankets, read notes and cards from friends, family, random people who heard about our loss online, looked at horrible hospital photos of their tiny, dead bodies, looked at their birth, baptismal and death certificates, and remembered a few days that we wish had never happened.
And we cried and held each other.
I never really cried much before we lost the boys. Haven’t really cried a ton since that loss. And so when I cry, when I give in to the grief and let my mind wander back to the first moment the doctor told us that we would have to terminate the pregnancy (such harsh, clinical words), my tears transport me back to that night. Back to that morning when Micah and Judah were born, when we held their little bodies, when we kissed them, and prayed over them, and told them how much we loved them, and had them baptized, and felt them struggle for breath in our hands.
And as shitty as it was, I think it’s a good thing for me to remember. To always remember.
As we talked last night, the thing that I still find the hardest to deal with, the thing that still fucks with my mind like nothing I’ve ever dealt with before, is trying to understand that without the death of Micah and Judah, without the horrific loss we went through, we wouldn’t have had Caleb. If Micah and Judah had been born, there would be no Caleb. Caleb Elijah would not exist.
And as Caleb approaches turning 10 months old next Tuesday, I can’t imagine a day without him.
That, my friends, is hard to wrap my mind around.
And no, I don’t think it’s as easy as saying, “See! God had something GOOD in mind when God God let Micah and Judah die.” Please don’t say that to me.
As I was playing with Caleb last night before putting him to bed, I told him about Micah and Judah. I told him that he has two brothers, and that someday, somehow, I trust that he’ll get to meet them. And I know that as he gets older, we’ll find ways to tell him about them, to allow him to know their story, and how much we loved them, and how much we love him.
And so we move forward. Another year. Another year without Micah and Judah. My boys. My first two sons. They were the ones who opened my heart up in new and intense ways, they were the boys who taught me the experience of loving deeply and proudly as a father. They will always be in my heart and mind, and I will never forget them.