This day three years ago I was holding Nolan with no idea what the future held.
This day two years ago I was holding Nolan in my arms as we selflessly agreed it was time to let him go.
That reminder that time is precious, and the future is never guaranteed is certainly a constant in my head. As if I needed any more reminders…the last few weeks with Landon have certainly made that clear all over again. Time is precious. Love is eternal. Grief is endless.
Maybe because grief is also endless, maybe because “moving on” is such a silly phrase, maybe because losing a child isn’t something you recover from…I’m proud of the last two years. They have been hard. Very hard. Far harder than I’m willing to be fully transparent with you about.
But I’m here, two years later. And I feel stronger than I ever thought I could. I’m saying this out loud mostly because I’m friends with lots of moms who have lost or will lose their children. Our online community cheers each other on, and we watch each family fight, sometimes winning battles, sometimes losing the war.
If you’re reading this and have experienced a loss, just because the war is over doesn’t mean you are no longer a warrior. You’re still fighting every day. You’re still working hard for every smile, every laugh, every ounce of normal you feel. You’re fighting for your family, for your marriage, for your other children perhaps. You’re fighting to be at work, or to care about your own health. You’re fighting for your faith, or to remember what matters to you. Some of you had to fight to get out of bed this morning.
Maybe this is an odd thought for a parent to have for a child. But this morning when I was reflecting, I found myself hoping Nolan is proud of me. Proud of how I’ve cared for Landon. How I’ve advocated for Isabella’s diagnosis and care. How I’ve loved Karson. How I’ve tried to do what is best for our family. How I’ve taken care of myself. How hard I’ve fought. All while proudly protecting a Nolan sized hole in my heart.
Yes, grief is endless, but love is eternal, and thus so too is the fight.