Today is the 2nd…which translates to one more month since I last kissed your sweet cheeks, and held your small hands in my own.
Margaret, our very underpaid therapist, continues to work with me on recognizing the fact that “…every day is really just another day”… “don’t allow the numbers, the observed holidays, the celebrations of those (still in your old world) make you believe that any particular day holds more or less meaning than the last – or the next. Margaret has not lost a child. She mostly certainly did not lose her only, beloved, perfect, miracle son. Moreover, she did not lose you. Yet she is one of the most brilliant, insightful, grounded, saucy women I have ever met. So I nod, as I sort of, semi-try to let her words past my mind and into my heart. To date, I remain unsuccessful. The truth is, there are days that are worse than others. Today is one of those days.
This morning, per my usual routine, I forced myself out of bed, walked directly into your room, and laid my grief-stricken forehead on your changing table. I guess this is my new-wave form of prayer. After wiping the left-over tear streaks from my face, I decided it was my motherly duty to try to create a little ‘happy’ in your room – – just in case you’d be able to stop home today. I tied your curtains back, and pulled your blinds half way up. It was particularly sunny and bright outside. The gentle snow falling from the sky made the view outside your window almost surreal. Without any forethought, I began to gather your most special stuffed animals, your cow mirror, and your different-color balls rattle. I methodically arranged them in your changing table. I put Giraffe (not Giraffey – Giraffe) at the helm – where he belongs. And, Sophie was safely placed in the middle, because she is the smallest, and the only girl. I put Owl, from Daddy, at the top – to keep a watchful eye out for any perpetrators. The rest of your guys were put in all the right positions as well. I had a system; it was just right. Diddy, if there is any credence behind the anthropomorphic nature of stuffed animals, as depicted in Toy Story, I am confident your “besties” were relieved to spend today together. I have just decided I will let them have a sleep-over too. I will cover them in your snuggly blanket from Nana. It will be the perfect ending to their not-so-happy day. (And, given the psychological damage my psychosis is bound to be afflicting on them – I’ll take them with us to Margaret next week. Ok? They’ll be fine.)
On an authentically happy note, I got my ring yesterday. Daddy began designing it for me in September. His intent was to have it done by my birthday. But, true to form, Momma completely changed her mind on the design mid-stream of the original project. Your understanding and patient Daddy did not mind (he’s used to Momma); our jeweler, Chris, probably wanted to choke me. I could not be swayed by his inconvenience; it needed to be perfect in every way. Needless to say, the long wait, the countless trips to Racine, the myriad of email exchanges, the uncomfortable requests for Chris to ‘change this’ & ‘refine that’ were all very well worth it. Hands down…Momma’s ring is the most beautiful, special, timeless piece of art I will ever own. Given it is a creative arrangement of your monogrammed initials – I am not surprised. I will not remove it for as long as I live.
Paxton, I would give anything in the whole world to gently kiss you on your warm little head tonight. I would give even more to trade places with you. You should be here today…you should be here tomorrow…you should be happy, healthy, and safe – in your crib – with all of your favorite stuffed animals, having a sleepover.
Like any mother whose child has been murdered, I do not believe my soul can or will rest until justice is served. I need to find a way to get the right people to listen. I need to find a way to get the right people to think differently. I need to find a way to get the right people to unite – and then refuse to be told “no”. Childhood cancer can no longer be allowed to slip past the radar of the ‘eye for an eye’ mentality. Fuck you, Childhood cancer. You have taken one too many shots, you little bitch. You have crossed the path of the wrong Momma. I am coming for you; and I gots a hell of a gold ring to pound right into your ugly, smug face.
I love you, my Peaceful Warrior. You, and you alone, are enough. You will always be enough. You will always be my baby. I will always be your Momma. Thank you, infinitely, for being my son.
Stay with me, sweet boy.