A Frozen Graveyard

 This weekend left me with a melancholy ache, I’d spent  Saturday nursing that ever-elusive and maddening sickness I’ll call jealousy.  This longing, it  hit me while I was scrolling through Facebook and saw a picture of a friend’s baby girl, bright-eyed, beautiful and donning an adorable headband, I longed for just chance to prove I could do pink and not screw it up.

This ache it caught me as I watched at my nephews birthday, as his cousin (on his daddy’s side)  played happily on the floor among the chaos of my boys and their, “imagine-if” fantasies.  You see she is just two-weeks older than my girl. She is darling and spirited and completely at home in a pile of boys as they dive into a chasm of couch-cushions on the floor.  As I watched her, I saw all of my should-have-beens and I floated into a reverie of what that life would have looked like.

Yesterday, found me at the cemetery taking Ireland pink roses–especially chosen by her brother Moose. When I walked out to her stone, I knew it would be covered in snow, I knew that the vase that holds her flowers would be frozen into the ground and I knew that I would have to lay the flowers in a pile, rather than arranging them for her, in a vase at the top of her grave.  Truthfully, it really doesn’t matter that my head has this knowledge; when I walked out there and saw the place where my daughter lays covered in ice and frozen it ripped apart a piece of my heart. While the wind blew and the snow drifted around me, I chiseled the ice out of the engraving of her name and cleared away the snow. I laid those perfect pink roses on the ground and I walked back to the car.

Life never should have been like this; taking flowers to a frozen graveyard, crying broken tears over a vase that won’t budge from its cement holder and tending to a tiny headstone that held a lifetime’s worth of hopes and dreams.  This longing, oh it aches.

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  1. Can you believed I’m jealous of you? To be able to go to a grave and just lay flowers? I lost a baby at 15 weeks. I don’t know if he/she was a boy or girl. My doctor said stay home unless you hemorrhage, which of course I did. Be alone and scared. I just did what I was told. Everyone around me acted like it was just a scary medical problem. I didn’t think I was even allowed to be sad.

    Following your Journey with Ireland has allowed me to greive with you and for you. I am so sorry for all you have been through. I admire your strength and dedication to your boys and to Ireland. And I thank you for sharing your pain and sorrow. It has allowed me feel my own.

    I read recently that it can help to name a baby even years later, so I finally have. Charlie would have been 18 this month. Hard to believe. And I miss Charlie more today than ever.

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