It’s hard to believe it was just eleven months ago today that you made my heart, my soul, my world whole. It’s all hard to believe.
I had a dream last night. It was a perfect reenactment of the day you were born. I was in room #4, with Daddy, Lala, Nana, Grammie…and, even nurse Jenny. Except, this time, when you came out the doctors and nurses wrapped you up in those little, white, baby blankets and carried you away. They didn’t let me hold you. They didn’t even let me see you. I tried to get out of the hospital bed to run after you, tried to scream your name, scream for help. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t speak. Suddenly, everyone else was gone too. I could hear their voices; but I was alone. Not surprisingly, the only person I wanted to find…needed to get to, was you. In a panic, I couldn’t get myself unhooked from the hospital bed. (I know those beds like the back of my hand. I spent so much time strapped into one when we were there together in late November, early December – hooked up to monitors, belts, and alarms. All eyes were on you, Paxton; everyone was watching and tracking you…no one more closely than me.) The whole bad dream scene startled me awake. For a brief moment, I was actually relieved to realize it was a dream. The next moment, however, I realized you were still gone. Hot tears began to stream down my cheeks. I wanted to run down to your room, just to be sure. But, the pain in my heart reassured me I wasn’t dreaming anymore. Somehow, my real life is far more disturbing than my bad dreams now. In attempts to anchor myself, I did the only thing that helps me survive those long, dark, frightening nights: I rolled over and held onto Daddy as tight as I could. Sometimes, when I concentrate on his breathing, I am able to cry myself back to sleep. Thankfully, last night was one of those times.
I spent most of the day trying to erase the dream from my head. I didn’t tell Daddy about it. It’s obvious the dream is a parallel with how I amble through each day. Therefore, I didn’t find the need to psychoanalyze it. You were here. You were real. You were mine. Without permission, right under my watch, cancer stole you out of my arms. I couldn’t run after you; I couldn’t scream for help; and, despite the army of love surrounding me, I am alone in this pain…which is holding me hostage. Most of all, I ache to be with you.
I wish I could have seen your face, sweet boy. I won’t stop looking. I know you will come visit when you can. And, I will be here. I will always, always be here. Say the word, and I will come running. Not a dream, not 100 straps and alarms, not an army, not even asshole cancer will stop me this time.
I miss kissing you on the very inside of your neck. I miss everything else too.
Stay with me, sweet boy.