I have written a letter to you a million times, over and over in my head, but I can never seem to figure out exactly what I want to say and get it on paper, or the computer, but you know what I’m saying. I apologize that so much of what I have written is about Simon and not about you. Know that that means nothing expect that I am processing our new world. Today I will just put it all out there, that letter that has been twirling around my head, and if it makes sense, great. If not, well, I tried.
Nolan, you are my rock. You are what keeps me waking up each day. You are my everything. That’s a lot of pressure to put on a two year old, I know, but it’s true. You are the child that made me a mom, something I wanted my entire life. From the moment you entered this world and let out a scream for the first time, I knew that I would do anything to protect you. Anything to calm you. To help you. To teach you. I knew I would do anything to make you happy. I would do anything to make as many of your wishes as possible come true. I knew that I would always hold you as close as you’d let me, and hopefully that’s really really really close until you are 30 and then I may lessen my grip ever so slightly.
When I was pregnant you would rub my tummy and talk to the baby. At that time we didn’t know if we were having a little boy or girl. You would lift my shirt and tell the baby to come out so you could play, not knowing that it would still be awhile before the two of you would actually play together. We would ask you if you wanted a brother or a sister, but to you it didn’t matter. You wanted a baby. You helped your daddy get the nursery nice and perfect for the baby’s arrival. You helped paint the dresser, put the crib together and even hang pictures. We would spend every afternoon in the baby’s room reading books and playing with little tiny toys, all to get you excited and ready to be a big brother.
And then our world broke into a million pieces.
You tell me that you don’t miss Simon. I think you don’t miss him because you never met him. This is still something I struggle with everyday. Should we have brought you to the hospital to meet your baby brother? Would things make more sense to you if you had had that opportunity? If you had held him? Or did we do the right thing? We tried as hard as possible at first to shield you from the truth. We would take turns locking ourselves in the the bathroom to scream and cry and hit things while the other parent attempted to happily play with you in another room. It took us awhile to realize that there was no way we could keep our grief from you. There is no way I could hide my tears from you as I never even know when they are going to arrive. Sometimes the tears are small and last just a little bit, and sometimes they take over. Your compassion is evident, and growing as you often ask me why I am sad and offer to give me a hug to make me feel better. When you are older I’m guessing you will understand what you are missing. But for now, you tell me all about your wishes. You wish Simon was here. You wish you could crawl on the floor with Simon. You wish you could even share your water bottle with Simon. You wish you could take a nap next to Simon. And you wish you could giggle with him in the backseat of the car. I wish all of this for you as well and it absolutely kills me that I can’t make your wishes come true.
You often ask me where Simon is. It is such a difficult question to answer. Simon is everywhere you see. He is in the stars we see in the dark of night. He is in the sunset. He is in the smiles we see on strangers faces. He is in beams of sun shining down. He is in the little blue butterflies we see as we are hiking. He is in a little urn on our mantle that we have never found the guts to share with you. How can I help you make sense of any of this when it will never make sense to me?
I am so sorry. So sorry that you don’t have a little brother here to do all of those things with. I am so sorry that I failed you in making that wish come true. I am sorry that I am often sad and constantly wiping tears off my eyes. I am sorry that I don’t smile as often as I used to, don’t laugh as often as I used to, don’t make as many fun plans and adventures like we used to. I’m so sorry that I struggle taking you places that we used to love to go together. It is hard for me to see chipper, smiley, families when right now I feel so broken. Please know that I am trying. Please know that everyday is an attempt at finding myself again. This will all take time Nolan. It will take time for your daddy and I to continue healing. We are not who we used to be and we are rediscovering ourselves. I can only hope that we are becoming better people, better parents. Better parents for you and for Simon.
I want you to never forget that you ARE a big brother. You are Simon’s big brother.
I love you to the moon and back, all day, everyday.