The house seems empty without Perry. The floor is barren without his baby armada, the silence deafening, when there should be cries, giggles, nonsense noises, and the beginnings of words. A baby sitting up proudly or beginning to pull up on our legs. I should hear him rustling in the pack in play as I get home, we should be getting his own crib in his own room any day now.
Emily is too quiet as she plays with her coloring book, instead of chattering to her brother as she works beside him.
I realize I have these dreams, where I think I see Perry and it turns into a nightmare of him being dead, then I wake, my heart beating frantically as my mind realizes even in sleep that the horrible truth is real. Chris and Emily do the same, and when they do, I reach out and touch them until they settle back to sleep. Emily is starting to sleep in her own bed for part of the night on occasion, I say part of the night because so far she has always woken up crying and joins us in our bed after the second time. But the completely sleepless nights are becoming fewer, the wakings less.
Can I admit that the worst part of this is that I wish I could remember the happy dreaming of Perry before the illusion shatters? Why am I only left with the angry fragments of death? Why can't God use my dreams to pull the veil between us thin so I can see him beyond the translucence? Is that too much to ask?
The parts that make me the angriest is when my mind tries to put the situation in a context it understands, this meaning that because Perry is not here, to default to the time before him. It is frustrating because it tricks me into normalcy. I forget the loss for a short while, then I see something and it hits me. It is made worse because the grief of missing and the anger of forgetting my child existed is a toxic combination more potent together than each effect added up separately.
But then sometimes for just a brief second, I remember Perry and I am happy. The grief usually hits in a wave after, but it is nice that even for a brief while the joy I felt with my family is recaptured.
I was in Northcrest, and as luck would have it, on the nursery floor. The elevators are by the viewing area. I stopped and stared for a while, the pain stinging again. I could see a father rocking, a little form under a warmer... The wanting pain. (There are different forms just as there are different forms of love).
My husband wrapped his arm around me and I could only hear a few of his quiet words... "Someday... again."
How to finish up this family journey? What is our future? Even our decisions make no matter in the storm of fate or 'God's plan'. We can try to decide, but nothing is guaranteed.
God grant me happiness again someday, whether in this little fractured family that remains or a new weaving.
I know your hands are working, tying our family tapestry onto the lomb again. Loosen the threads tightened by his death, tie these new strings to the ugly ends dangling. New threads woven in below the shimmering silk of Perry's life. Tied to the jagged threads that were torn crudely as he left us, the fabric snagging angrily. Maybe different material, but perhaps something still beautiful in the ruggedness that contrasts with his delicate threads as the shuttle flies rapidly. Or if it is to remain as it is, fixing the fraying threads to keep this creation from unraveling, so that we can use it again.
God make us whole.