Month 9 has been a busy one. It’s been filled with progress. We flew to California to visit my brother-in-law, sister-in-law, and niece. We spent a few days there exploring the Bay area and catching up with family. I will admit that spending so much consecutive time with a toddler, hurt my heart a little. Sometimes it is hard to see Hubby play with other’s children and know I will never get to see him do that with Asher. Also, depending on my emotional state just hearing a child say “Daddy” or “Mommy” cuts deep, because I will never get to hear my son say that to us. However, it was great to be able to interact with our niece since we have only seen her a few times in her 2.5 years on this earth. (It was great to see her Mom and Dad, too.)
Some photos from our trip and day in San Francisco. We toured Alcatraz and I got to see the seals! Look how majestic they are!
This month we attended a birthday party for our other “niece” who turned 4 (still can’t believe it!). A few days before the party, I saw a mutual friend post about their son on Facebook and learned that he was born literally the day before Asher. Immediately, the anxiety hit. My friend told me they would be at the party and that she understood if we didn’t go. I refused to miss this party. Our “niece” kept asking if we were coming and I wasn’t letting that spunky little girl down! Hubby doubted my ability to keep it together at the event but we went to the party and I was fine. Granted, I avoided the baby and by association his parents, but I made it through the event, in which a little boy who was literally the EXACT age as Asher should be, was present without running away in tears. PROPS TO ME!
Afterwards, I felt awful about avoiding his parents and I reached out apologizing to his mother. Her response was amazing. She told me that 1) I didn’t have to apologize, 2) she has read every one of my blogs, 3) she thinks about Asher often, 4) they knew we would be there, and considered not bringing their son to avoid upsetting us and decided to just keep him away from my husband and I. Her words made me cry. It was nice to know that people still think of us and, most importantly, Asher. It can sometimes feel like he is forgotten and, by association, our pain is forgotten. It was nice to know that this woman, who I haven’t seen in a few years, but who I am friends with online, thought of us and continues to think of us.
The other moment of progress was that I finally met my neighbor’s newborn son. He was born at the end of August. I figured he was big enough now to not remind me of a newborn. I’ve missed seeing my neighbor. I know she has been keeping her distance to allow me time and I thought it was time to bite the bullet and see how I do. Before, going over I told my friend that I don’t think I could hold her son, which she understood. I went over and was fine, with no secret breakdown when I got home. He was there, I acknowledged him, I put the hat I made him on his head, he was fine, I was fine. Success!
This month I also had a random realization. A couple of years ago, Hubby bought me a necklace with my monogram. I love it, but I haven’t worn any jewelry other than my Asher jewelry for the past 9 months. The other morning I was wearing a sweater, with which I usually wear my monogram necklace. I started thinking about it and the fact that I don’t like to wear jewelry that isn’t for Asher. I realized something that I never thought of until that moment…. Asher and I have the same initials! Now, to be honest, I do have an extra initial. When Hubby and I got married, I couldn’t fully let go of my maiden name so I threw that in as a second middle name. However, my monogram necklace just includes my first name, original middle name, and my last name. The same initials as my sweet boy! That morning I texted Hubby my realization and his response was “I never realized that either. Wow!!”. We finalized Asher’s name at 28 weeks, back in January of 2017, and in all that time, neither one of us realized that he and I have the same initials. I think at one point I realized our first and middle names were the same initials but I never realized all three were the same. (I’m not quite sure how that never happened, but I’m going to just chalk it up to the grief cloud.) It’s nice to know that my little boy and I have that connection. I can wear anything monogramed and it could be for me and my son.
I still have my moments where I am super emotional, sometimes just thinking about Asher makes me cry. He should be here and he isn’t. It still takes my breath away at moments. However this month, I have made some progress in my grief and I’ve bee able to be around former triggers with no issues. It’s been 3/4 of a year without a piece of my heart and slowly I am learning to cope with the world and triggers that are all around me. One day at a time. That is all we can do when lose a piece of ourselves.