“Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak knits up the over wrought heart and bids it break.”
–William Shakespeare, Macbeth
My Dear Isaac,
Spring has arrived. Those red tinged buds we loved have sprouted and the robins have returned in the side yard pine tree. The river is high and swift and I’ve been in the kayak three times already. When the sun shines on my face I give thanks and when the breeze bristles my skin I whisper your name.
I went to the first baseball game of the season. The pants this year are white. I couldnt help but think you would have loved that clean, crisp, bright look. As I watched your teammates in the batters box I noticed the strength and growth of their bodies, and thought of you in your uniform and the strength and growth of your body. I always held a feeling of pride in the good genes you got from your father and I and that I fed you well and nursed you long as a baby. You were such a beautiful boy. Your arms would already be a little brown by now and your skin would glisten. Those pearly whites and that beautiful, fortunate son smile would be beaming from the outfield.
Your classmates are preparing for graduation, open houses, and all the festivities of commencement. I marvel at the paths that await them. Watching them grow up with you, I have been a witness to all that it has taken each of them to reach this point. I think of what impact they will have on their worlds. I think about how all your teachers since early elementary said this class was special. I think about what it will be like with most of them moving on and away from here in a few months and how will I keep up with them? Will they come visit me when they visit home?
This week will mark 6 months since I saw your sweet face, hugged your strong body, and told you again I loved you most. Six months since you sent me a text just to say WILY in the middle of the day because you were thinking of me or told me a joke that made me cry with laughter. And it has been six months that I have spent scrutinizing every memory, scanning for evidence of how a boy as precious and loved as you could come to feel so hopeless. Six months of questioning my parenting, my capacity to love, who I am and how I showed up. And now, in the metaphorical spring of loss, I come to a soft landing post. I see that you and I shared an incredible bond, I see that we were blessed with 18 years of infinite, boundless, extraordinary love, and I see that life continues in cycles for all. I know that you are free. I know that I will live in a way that honors you. Though I miss you more than I could ever say, I know for certain that you are here, with me. Whether I am on my knees, begging for mercy, or I am shining like the sun, I carry you with me. You were a part of every decision and thought I had since the moment the blessing of your being merged with mine. And you still are. You are the best there ever was and you made me a better woman. I will no longer allow doubt to erode what I have always known. We loved. We love still.