Tuesday, November 12, 2013


I had a moment of unreality yesterday. It was surreal...like an image overlapped on what could have been...

I walked down the hall and bent down to pick up Nathan who was sitting on the floor. I had a glimpse of the fact that he could so easily have not been here at all...and without Eva, he almost certainly wouldn't have been.

One of those moments where you wonder how the future would change if you could go back in time and change the one thing that was your heart's desire.

My life is often surreal...

...when I give away Little J's size 3 clothes instead of keeping them for Eva.
...when I nurse Nathan in the night and marvel at his perfection.
...when I get up (again) when he is crying and think that Eva would be sleeping for sure.
...when I set out the dinner plates and sometimes (yes, still) put out the wrong number of plates.
...when I take Little J to a girls only party that I should have taken two girls to.
...when I whisper good night to my child in heaven.
...when I weep while driving and (yes, still) can't believe this is my life.
...when I hear of other people's miracles...and smile through my unshed tears for their good fortune.
...when I count my blessings, and one of them is missing, though she blesses me nonetheless.
...when I open the door and forget, for the slightest of moments, that she is gone.
...when I order those stupid family stickers, and need to make sure to get one with a halo.
...when I am surprised by joy and forget again that she is not and will never be here to share it with me.
...when I contemplate the sheer magnitude of the years ahead of me on this green earth.
...when I head count in the van and there is always a sense of unease, as if not everyone is there...and that's just it, not everyone is and never will be again.
...when I look at all those happy families around me and marvel at the fact that they get to keep all their children.
...when I hold Nathan in my arms and he smiles the sweetest of milky smiles at me and I love that smile beyond words...and I know he could go at any time.


  1. I'm confused - I thought you had 5 sons and Eva - so who is little J? Did I get that all mixed up?

    I get this post - all of it. I get the "shadow life" glimpses, where you suddenly see the life you should have had... I get the loneliness of being what can feel like the only incomplete family in the world - (we know we are not alone, but...)...

    I get it all and for what it's worth Em, I am so sorry. It is just unfair xx

    1. Little J is an ongoing journey for me but here is a post all about her. I blogged about her quite a bit while you were on hiatus.

  2. It's times like this I wish your blog posts had a "like" button because I do not have the right words for this one.

  3. All of these! It's surreal. And - why order those stupid family stickers? They make me as angry as emoticons!!! :)

  4. I find M's sweet milky smile completely surreal, too. He is such a mama's boy and the way he looks at me...and nearly every time I think: he wasn't going to be here. Surreal is it exactly.