Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Where are you Christmas?

Taken a year ago today
I heard Where are you Christmas? the other day on the radio & had to really fight to keep my composure. I've heard the song before, though never really understood it until this year.

We decorated our tree a couple weeks ago. Lights, ornaments, an angel on top that one of the girls made a year or two ago. We turned off all the lights and sat down to enjoy it. Only... I couldn't see it clearly. My eyes were blurred with tears. What should have been a sweet, peaceful moment turned into such a painful one that I had to turn away from it all. How badly I wanted to have a 1-year-old boy on my lap - mesmerized by the lights. Determined to pull all the ornaments off the tree. Exploring all the decorations and tasting all the sweets.

We are doing service projects this year & writing them down to put in his stocking. But even this is half-hearted on my part. I don't WANT to do service projects on behalf of my son. I want to buy trucks and cars. Balls and blocks. Dinosaurs and dragons. I want to put THOSE in his stocking and get to watch his eyes light up as he rips the paper and figures out what's inside. I want to hear his first words and see him take his first steps.

And as hard as I try to be here for Christmas this year, I'm not.  I am back in Philadelphia. I am not folding laundry and carpooling and making dinners. I am walking hand-in-hand with my sweetheart down alleyways toward CHOP in the cold. I'm staring up at these amazing old buildings along the way. I'm in the hospital room with my son. I'm watching as Jason reads him books. I'm singing "every little thing you do I do... adore" to him as I bounce him up and down. I'm at the Ronald McDonald House, eating delicious food, talking with amazing people. I'm at CHOP, talking with doctors. Talking with nurses. I'm in the pump room - again and again. I'm looking into his blue eyes and kissing his huge cheeks. I'm hoping. I'm praying. I'm waiting for elevators. I'm hearing Christmas music play. I'm talking to the girls on the phone. I'm walking alongside medical students in an enclosed walkway above the noisy street below. I'm texting friends and family. I'm trying to get him to smile and mimic my sounds. I'm walking the fluorescent halls...

Yes, I will keep trying to pull myself back, but I keep going there. Remembering. Aching. Wanting the Christmas of last year. The Christmas of bringing him home from Philadelphia. Not being able to sleep on the plane for the joy, excitement, and miracle of it all. Surprising family and friends. Passing him around at Christmastime. Seeing the bright lights, hearing the sweet songs, having my heart overflow with love and gratitude.
This year, the lights don't seem so bright... the songs don't seem so sweet. If I could only ask for ONE thing for Christmas this year - and for the REST OF MY LIFE - it would be to have my son back. Oh... how I miss him.

8 comments:

Tiff Meister said...

Oh heidi, my heart aches for you! I've started to write something more 4 times already but keep erasing my words because I don't know what to say besides I love you!

Patricia Potts said...

Tears fall and I sniff back my aching heart. I remember his arrival, I remember how he was passed around and I got my turn, I remember the look on GG's face when she sw him, I remember his chubby cheeks, I remember as well and I miss him too.

Ryan and Shannan Hoffman said...

I can't imagine how hard this time of year must be. I remember being glued to your blog last December with everything you were going through with Link. Praying for peace and comfort for you this year.

Ryan and Shannan Hoffman said...

I can't imagine how hard this time of year must be. I remember being glued to your blog last December with everything you were going through with Link. Praying for peace and comfort for you this year.

Lisa-Lou-Who said...

It breaks my heart.

Katie said...

Heidi, I read this and most of it really resonates with me. I haven't figured out what to do for Christmas, but around my son's birthday I donate sleep sacks to local hospitals. This year I am helping to give them to military families for an entire year... and yet as worthy a project as it is, it still leaves me empty because what I really want to do is to buy a car or little people pirate ship for a baby boy that I love dearly. Maybe in some ways I am very selfish, but it is no more than any other mother wants. I am sure that God understands this, and extends grace to me. Much love to your family.

Molly said...

I know how hard our first Christmas was without Jovi... And we didn't have the memories of every celebrating one before. I'm so sorry your precious boy isn't here and that you will be forced to do and removed everything about last year, but all while doing it without him.

My heart is with you... And breaking with you as you attempt to enjoy this season while you are broken.

Praying.

prayingformyrainbow said...

That song gets to me too. All holidays get to me. It's so hard. I never got to spend any holidays with Anneliese. My first Christmas (last year) I was in shock. This second Christmas without her actually has been harder for me, as I have "woken up" from the reality of her loss and from fighting cancer, to realize that yes, she truly is gone. I hate SIDS! I have become more of a giving person though, paying it forward in her name, and hosting the first annual Strollin' to Fight SIDS walk for the CJ Foundation last June. Philanthropy helps the soul, but it still hurts. I wish I could do more fundraising to support SIDS research. Do more good in this world.. because things don't matter. People do. Hugs to you.