Year Seven: Perspective

Yesterday, I got home to realize that Dan had run a half-full dishwasher, while still leaving some dirty dishes in the sink.

Kate pooped in her pants again. I yelled. Again.

Between the two of them, the girls ate half of my salad greens at dinner. Kate had to be bribed to eat two noodles, while Flora cleaned her plate.

Kate spilled her sister’s orange juice all over the floor. Flora sprayed Febreeze in her hair.

This weekend, Dan spent a lot of time with us, his “girls”.

This weekend, Flora was brilliant. And whiny.

This weekend, Kate made me so mad I cried. This weekend, Kate made me laugh so hard I cried.

If Gabriel had lived, he would be 7 years old. I would have stories to tell about him.

As it stands, he doesn’t have much of a story. He lived, he died, he was born.

Last night, we had brownies for dessert — what my older daughter insists on calling brownie lasagna because she thinks brownies are round and come three to a bag. I’ve mentioned I’m not much of a baker, yes? The girls got baths, and a night-time show, and a book. We squabbled at bed time over what light to leave on. Flora insists she will have nightmares.

Grief this year is less like grief qua grief, and more like anxiety and worry. Grief this year is the realization that missing a person, a child, doesn’t mean that other things don’t happen — the crying and laughing and cuddling and frustration. Other babies, and fatigue, nausea, and worry (again).

Grief this year is looking around and realizing that it’s just part of my life, our life. Missing Gabriel is just part of the adventure we are on. For better or worse.

In the meantime: