Thursday, June 19, 2008

She would have been four...

Today is Lydia's 4th birthday. Four years, wow. It doesn't really get any easier as the years go by, does it? This is still a hard day and I made the silly decision to come into work today, when I could have just as easily worked from home. I did fine until I finished up with my morning tasks and had time for a breather, when a few big waves of grief washed over me. Just seeing the date all over the place today makes my heart ache. Which is what lead me to having a big ol' cry in the ladies room a few minutes ago. I don't want to be in my head anymore. But that doesn't stop me from picking at the scab by playing "I Will Remember You" by Sarah McLachlan. The last line of which ("weep not for the memories"), of course, I do not heed.

Her flowers at church did not come out that nicely this year (fuscia coloured roses that were half wilted), so I didn't bother taking pictures. I took the salvagable stems and put them in vases with some peonies, which garnished our new patio table when we had dinner guests over on Sunday. It was there that I learned that I'm not the only freak in my sphere of friends and acquaintances. It was revealed during a heart to heart with the wife of an old friend that she had been trying to have a baby when she went into menopause at 40 (I had always assumed that they had chosen not to have children). They have decided not to adopt, so they will remain childless. I, however, do not wish to remain childless. I want to have children in our home, wherever that may be. I want to know what it feels like to wake up in the morning and have little ones to take care of, inquiring little people who need me to help explain the world to them. To know what it sounds like to hear a little voice calling me mommy, to watch them experiencing their surroundings for the first timet, to find out how boundless my love can be... I do not want to spend much more of my life without all of that.

For today, though, I will remember Lydia. Which seems like a silly statement, since I remember her every day. But especially around this time -- remembering how happy I was anticipating her arrival. Picking up little things for her nursery, that have now all (more or less) been repurposed. The tall thin bookshelf I picked up at a yard sale a week before she died is now in our bathroom, full of towels and toiletries. The lovely Moses basket that I imagined carrying her around in from nursery to garden, now sits in her room piled with out of season curtains (did I mention that my house has a severe lack of closet space?). I've even starting using my old casual maternity wear as work clothes. It made me pang the first few times I put them on, but now they're just regular pieces of my wardrobe. One thing that hasn't been tossed or reused is a small plush lamb that used to sit in her bassinet. Keith picked it up one day a year or so ago and put it on his dresser. He said he liked looking at it, that it was comforting, so there it has stayed ever since.

Happy Birthday, my little one. My heart will never stop aching for you.
:: posted by Ann Howell, 2:38 PM


Happy Birthday Lydia and many hugs to your mom and dad. I've been thinking of all of you today as I'm sure I will every June 19th.
Blogger SWH, at 6/19/2008 5:55 PM  
Happy Birthday Lydia, and Kate also. I know i am a day late with my comment but i thought of you both yesterday, i did not forget.
Blogger kate, at 6/20/2008 10:20 AM  
Thank you Sarah and Kate :)

Sarah, I was thinking of you and your Kate yesterday, too (our girls are forever linked!). Hope you all had a peaceful day.
Blogger Ann Howell, at 6/20/2008 10:24 AM  
The thought of a four year old girl missing in your life, how that must ache.

Thank you for letting us remember Lydia with you.
Blogger Lut C., at 6/21/2008 5:53 PM  
Happy Birthday little girl.

Your mom and dad miss you so much.

I'm glad to see you posting again Julia - I have missed you.

Sweet sweet little girl, i wish you were here.

much love
Blogger B, at 6/22/2008 6:23 AM  
Sorry this is belated Ann, but I wanted you to know I'm thinking of you. Four years goes by quickly in some aspects, doesn't it, but surprisingly slow in other ways, like slow motion where you re-live every last detail of a painful memory. Thinking of Lydia and your family, and wishing for you continued peace and love. Hugs.
Blogger Julie, at 6/23/2008 4:53 AM  
Sweet birthday Lydia. Ann - I have been out of town and this is my first day back at the computer. I've been thinking about you, Keith and Lydia. I love that Keith has Lydia's lamb on his dresser.

Lots of hugs to you.
Blogger stat763, at 6/25/2008 12:30 PM  
I'm sorry this is so late, but I wanted you to know that I thought of your Lydia today.

Blogger msfitzita, at 7/04/2008 9:11 AM  
I have a similar sort of event a couple of days after yours. Some years it takes me most of the day to realize why I am so moody and miserable. I guess even when we forget, we're still changed.
Blogger Geekwad, at 7/10/2008 11:56 AM  

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