My dearest Heidi,
Oh how I wanted to see you this week. Needed to see you. You were there, I know you were. I could feel you. With each smile that your sweet son gave me.
Still, it wasn’t you.
Your husband and son arrived in style late Sunday night. By style I mean his new-to-him Jeep Wrangler. Oh Heidi. He’s so happy in it. He’s finally finding himself after losing you. He’s finally figuring out who he is, finding his identity after being a partner and husband to you. It was heartwarming to see him so happy. He was like a young boy. He went geocaching with the boys and off-roading in the woods around the cabin. He was just plain giddy.
On the night of his arrival he asked our permission to move to Colorado. My heart stalled for a brief moment. To have them so far away. But I know it’s what they need. I know it’s what is best for them. I put a bright smile on my face and told him we would love to visit Colorado. It’s been so long since we’ve been there. The boys would love to play in the mountains. I promised him we would get together for a week every summer, no matter where we all are. My heart still aches that they will be so far away. But distance is only miles and miles were meant to be crossed.
Your sweet little boy is growing so quickly. He has stories to tell and ideas to share. He still carries his little Pooh Bear with him. We talked together about how he used to chew on Pooh when he was little and that’s why his ear and arm are pretty much gone. He told me he just liked Pooh’s shirt and wanted to wear it. That’s why he chewed on it. I had to hug him to keep from crying. It was something that you would have said.
He’s so much like you. I’m so thankful everyday that you gave him to us. Life without you would be so much harder if we didn’t have him. He is growing up to have the best of both his mom and dad. His features mirror both of you. But his smile and his eyes are all yours, Heidi. Every genuine smile he flashes me screams of you. I am delighted and melancholy in the same breath.
Our boys are the friends that we’d always dreamed they would be. They play so well together. They laugh and giggle at boy humor in all the same ways. They know just how to get each other going. They hugged each other goodbye last night and were sad that they couldn’t spend anymore time together, each of them begging for just one more week together. It was so hard to tell them that their time was up. Truth be told, I wanted another week too.
I had some hard auntie/nephew moments this week. Your sweet little boy has become very sensitive about not having you. I realize that it’s his age as my boys are questioning not having a dad. Your son is wondering why he doesn’t have a mom. He doesn’t want to talk about you but at the same time wants to talk about you. This has to be so hard for him. So I treaded lightly. I gave him mint chocolate chip ice cream and told him it was your favorite. I reminded him that you and I took all of our boys to see Kung Fu Panda at the theater together. I let his dad heal his wounds but was ready to be a mommy figure if he needed one. On the last day of our trip he let me get him ready for bed. Something so simple that spoke volumes for me.
I want to thank you again for your beautiful son and his amazing father. They bring me so much joy. They do so much to keep you in my life. Last night I hugged your son goodnight. I ran my fingers through his hair – your hair. I held him gently and hugged him as I would you. I prayed that you were looking down and you would know that hug was for both of you.
Heidi, I miss you so much. Not a day goes by that I don’t wonder at how I’ve managed 3 years without you. My fingers still long to dial your number so I can hear your voice. To see your eyes roll at something ridiculous. To feel your hug. To share sister secrets. To hear your laugh. You had a bigger purpose, to take care of my babies while I take care of yours.
I thought you’d like to know that we are moving forward, just as you wanted us to. You are forever in our thoughts and in our hearts. I love you and miss you. Always.
Your loving sister,