Thanksgiving. It is that time of year where we all sit around and say what we are thankful for in our lives. We focus on the good things that happened over the past year and the things in our lives for which we are grateful. While I know that I have so many things to be thankful for in this life, all I can think about are the things that are lacking in my life, or more specifically the one person missing from my life.
To put it bluntly, my son is dead. He was alive and he died. I know some people don’t like to word it that way, I myself didn’t like to say that either, but it is the harsh truth of our reality. He was here and he is gone. He left this earth and took a HUGE piece of me with him. The hole that is his absence is massive. It’s magnified by everything in my life. I may go to work, attend social gatherings, function in “normal” society, and appear to be my old myself, but I’m not. The holidays only amplify the pain that is a constant in our lives.
Thanksgiving has never been a holiday I am particularly fond of. Why does it always have to be on a Thursday?! Some of us don’t have Black Friday off, so it’s just a random chaotic day off in the middle of the week! I’ve also never been a huge fan of the food. Growing up in PA Dutch Country and being a picky eater, there are a lot of items served on this holiday that I refuse to eat; green bean casserole, filling, dried corn, no thank you. I have always just felt Thanksgiving was more inconvenient than a fun holiday.
That being said, this was supposed to be Asher’s first Thanksgiving. Hubby and I had talked about what the holiday would be like for us this year at our Thanksgiving last year (where he made me wear a cute holiday themed pregnancy shirt).
We said how we would most likely try to host both families at our house, so we could stay home with Asher. It would eliminate us having to cart all of the stuff a baby needs for long spans of time away from home. I, of course, wouldn’t cook much, but have the grandmothers bring things and someone else in charge of the turkey because I have no idea what the heck to do with that thing! However, all of that wishful thinking was shattered the moment Asher’s heart stopped. Now, we are going to Thanksgiving at my in-laws because I don’t want to cook and we have no reason to have everyone at our house. We don’t have a 9 month old son, with tons of baby stuff that we have to cart with us. It’s just us and Murphy. What I wouldn’t give to a have pudgy 9 month-old baby (who would most likely be in 12 month old clothing) with us this year.
However, our lives didn’t turn out how they should have. Instead, we don’t have that boy with us. While his physical presence in our lives is missing, we are still thankful to have had the limited amount of time that we did with him. He is our son and always will be. He made us both parents. His existence changed our lives irrevocably. While, I wish we didn’t have to experience the loss of him, I would never wish away those 8 months we had with him. All Asher ever knew in his life was love, and for that, I am thankful.
***Of course, we are also thankful for all the wonderful family and friends we have in our lives who have been there for us during this pretty thank-less year we’ve had. HAPPY THANKSGIVING!