August 14, 2016 I sat in a room across from my son’s PICU room praying so hard to myself that everything that was happening in front of my eyes was all a dream. That within the next few days, everything would be back to normal, or there would be at least some normalcy. I knew things weren’t going to be exactly back to the way they were. I knew we would be spending the next few weeks in the hospital at least, watching my son receive dialysis treatments for his kidneys. I knew we would be having many pediatrician appointments and nephrologist appointments. I was okay with that. If that is all I had to go through to keep my son here with me, we would have survived. It doesn’t matter the amount of medical bills or the endless trips to the doctor we would have made. I would do it all to have him here.
(This picture was from Grayson’s first haircut. It’s blurry, but his infectious smile makes up for the lack of quality. I along with his Daddy gave him all of his haircuts.)
What I am living now, is nothing we had planned for. I can only imagine what life with my 4 year old would be like. At just the tender age of two he was really beginning to speak sentences to us and hold conversations with us. He was learning so much at such a fast pace it was almost impossible to keep up with his “milestones” that I kept telling myself I needed to write down so I would never forget.
I was pretty good about keeping the baby book updated, keeping special outfits in a special box in his closet, printing out pictures from special trips and important holidays, writing down special milestones I didn’t want to forget before the age of 1. Those months go by so fast, it’s truly hard to remember it all if you don’t write it down. Just before Grayson’s second birthday I told myself I needed to sit down and get caught back up so I wouldn’t get too far behind.
I look back now and realize the stuff I did write down I am so thankful to have jotted down when I did so as the years go by those memories don’t fade away. I have a journal I keep sitting on my desk and when I remember a special memory or a phrase Grayson would say, I write it down so I never forget it.
Many people may not truly understand the thoughts that run through a bereaved mother’s mind. Many mom’s are worried about rushing their kids off to school, deciding what to pack for their child’s lunch the next day, what activities they have planned for the week after school and I am over here trying to grasp and remember every memory I did have with my child, so I don’t forget it. Sometimes I catch myself daily replaying my favorite memories in my head, or I will attempt to say the phrase he once spoke in the same tone of voice, just to try and remember what it sounded like coming from him. (Okay, I’m crying now.) I remember him always wanting you to come sit down on the floor by him and he would pat the floor and say, “sit, sit, sit.” Or the way he would say “combine” and “dad’s truck”. I miss hearing him say “mom” and “love you”. And see, even as I type this my mind is already forgetting some of those special phrases and now tonight as I lay in bed, I’ll rethink through the two years I had with him, trying to remember how he said everything.
Your mind runs like a pinball machine, thinking of one memory, only to bounce back and remember something else, then one memory leads you into something else special you want to remember. Everyday I only have two years worth of memories to replay. That’s not enough time or memories made.
It’s crazy to think Graysie is almost at the age Grayson was at when he got sick. Soon she will be talking sentences, saying her ABCs, counting to ten, learning to potty in the potty and surpassing milestones that Grayson had yet to accomplish. As the days go by, I realize that time spent without Grayson gets pushed farther and farther back. Two years without him has felt like 40. The days are incredibly long. He and Graysie are the first two people I think of when I wake up in the morning and the last two on my mind before I fall asleep.
I’ve learned that despite the heartache, even during the happiest times in life, without your child here on Earth, your heart is still filled with an enormous amount of sadness. I wish I knew how you could feel the happiest of emotions and the lowest of emotions all at once, because you think you could only feel happiness at once or sadness at once, but it’s true, you can feel both. Your heart learns to adapt, even when you didn’t think it was possible. People often tell me how strong I am and how they can’t imagine what I am going through. I once said the same thing, but until you have lived it, you really don’t have any other choice than to live. To live for your children, to live for your family, to live for you friends. Your heart and mind work in crazy ways and although your heart feels extreme sadness your mind counteracts and helps you push through the heartache to keep moving forward.
The past two years of my life I have experienced one of the lowest times in my life and one of the happiest times in my life, Graysie’s birth. The past two years have changed me in more ways than one and in too many areas to even look into.
I would give anything to see Grayson again, to hear his voice, to play with him, to hug him, to touch him, give him a kiss and hug, just to wake up seeing his smiling face asking for “oran juice”. It’s the littlest of memories that send a pain staking cry through your heart.
I miss everything about him.
There’s not enough words in the English dictionary to properly place into sentences to describe my love for my son. I would move mountains to get just five more minutes. I thought I had a lifetime, but I only had two years.
I don’t expect my heart to heal, because I know it never will, but I will hold tightly to the memories I have with Grayson in those short two years.
I love you Grayson Scott.