We are preparing to move. I'm not sure if I've mentioned that on this blog, but all of our friends and family know it. It's kind of been a standing joke, as we've been waiting on the current owners (dear, dear friends and mentors...family really) to finish the completion of building their new house. We signed the contract in August of last year, just 2 months before William passed.
We've been packing things we aren't using, as we expect the house to be finished in the next month (or so). Last week, I packed William's school shelf. I have been looking at his school books on his shelf everyday for over a year. There they've sat, untouched. I haven't even dusted them. And now the shelf sits, empty. His box of school sat in the middle of my laundry room floor for days. I just couldn't bring myself to move it. But someone finally did and now that spot, too, now sits empty. Like me.
Of course, we had expected to live there together. All of us. And now that will never happen.
But then my memory corrects me.
And I realize that I have not truly come to terms with his death.
I have not given my heart over to the fact that he is gone from my life, never to return.
That his childhood has vanished from my grip.
That I will never again hear that mischievous laugh or ornery "yep!" or the sweet way he would say, "I love you."
That his precious grip on my hand or arms entwined around my neck are gone from my life.
You see, somedays I can trick my heart into refusing to believe he's gone.
I listen for his hefty crawl to come barreling through the kitchen.
I hear the children laughing and habit ensures that I hear his voice right along with theirs.
My mind still sees him playing with everyone in the living room every time I hear the clank of the legos.
I still search for him in the bed at night when I go to kiss the children or check on them in the middle of the night.
I realize that I still expect to see him.
To hear him.
To feel him.
I still plan his next birthday.
I still worry about Braille.
I still run through medical appointments and therapies in my head.
I still worry about keeping him safe.
I still plan for him whenever I make plans...with they have wheelchair access, will he be accepted, will he have a good time, will he feel loved, will there be illness, what activities will there be that I will need to be on guard for to keep him safe, will he be able to touch and hear and be involved...
But then I remember.
I do not have those worries anymore. But oh, how I wish I did.
My head reminds me that I will see him again. One day. A day that seems so, so far away.
But my heart reminds me that I still have to live this life. Without him.