Remembering Faith Elizabeth

Remembering Faith Elizabeth

Monday, August 13, 2012

Bittersweet Birthday

The summer is over...August is here.  I haven't written any posts in ages.  Not much to write about, I guess.  We traveled, I rested, I read, watched movies...ran a zillion miles as I train for a half marathon in October.  Survived the crazy heat.  And now...August is here. 

Tomorrow is Faith's birthday.  She would be 3.  We would have a toddler running through our house, talking, asking questions, becoming a little girl, instead of a baby.  The crib that still sits in her room would be replaced with a bed, and we'd be tripping over the toys and things that a 3-year old bring.  And probably not know just how blessed we really were.  Had she lived. 

Her birthday continues to be bittersweet.  I feel that I have come to a place in grief that allows me to celebrate Faith's birth.  The fact that she was born alive...the fact that she lived for 3 days.  We got to see her eyes, hear her cry, give her a bath, change a diaper, cuddle her, pass her around to family and friends.  All the time knowing it would not last.  All the time, waiting for the eventual end we knew would come.  And it did; that's the bitter part. 

While we celebrate all the blessings we did get to have, we of course mourn the loss.  We think about her everyday...what our life would be like with her.  When we take trips, we talk about how she would be old enough to sit in the boat with us, enjoy learning to fish with her daddy, playing with her cousins on our recent road trip to Georgia.  Everything we do, we do with a little hole.  A little bit of bittersweet persists in every day of our lives. 

The pain is less...the intensity, the feeling of an elephant on my chest, the broken heart, the ache with every breath I take is no more.  Not usually.  There are still moments...often unpredictable ones.  A little girl that passes by and makes me wonder what Faith would look like; a trip to visit friends, with everyone's kids in tow - except ours.  Because she is not here.  The sadness never quite goes away, but it does change. 

I can look upon Faith's birthday tomorrow and be grateful for what we had, and be okay with where we are.  I will also have moments of longing and sadness, and an ache for my daughter.  I want to hold her hand and swing her between me and her dad.  I want to teach her to fish.  I want to take her to dance class, and to the pool with my friend's children.  I want to watch her run with the other children that are in our lives.  I picture her in every crowd, at every event, in every single thing we do.  Where would she be?  How would she fit in here?  How would this be different?  And we wonder if we are the only ones who ponder.  Does anyone else know how much my heart will ache tomorrow?  Does anyone realize how much my mind will be elsewhere for the next several days, no matter what facade I display? 

Some will. 

Good friends and family will say something...will hug me, will talk about her without guilt.  Because they will be the ones that know that we never forget.  That saying her name brings a smile to my face, even if it brings a tear to my eye. 

I don't know when I will get to hold her again, but I know the day will come.  Until then, I can wish to her in the stars.  Happy birthday, my sweet girl...