Dear Jakey,

I usually just write you letters as they come to me. Lately though that has been harder.  Even so I usually manage to catch myself up within a few days and then I can write.  Generally, I write always in one shot. For some reason or another this week I haven’t been able to. The letter I want to write has been in my head since Tuesday yet now it is Friday and I have tried twice to write it but just have gotten too tired and stopped. I refuse to not get this out now though – my head is all over the place lately. I am trying so hard to make your event perfect but am also so sad about it. I am not sure what to make of it all.  But  now I am going back to Tuesday because it seems to symbolize where I still am which is all over the place: happy, sad, up, down, and everything in between.

Your birthday is coming nearer. And your event is even sooner. Tuesday morning was pretty great. Ethan and I had a nice morning. I snuggled him up and he hugged me tight. I asked him if would always love him mommy most. He quickly answered no. And then told me he could only love me 2nd because he would always love you most. How can I fight that? I will gladly come in 2nd to you. And our morning continued nicely. When we went to see you, I told him how I was sad because I hadn’t seen the cardinal since the time about two weeks ago when it practically took us (me and E) out. We talked at your grave and it was one of those peaceful, wonderful visits where it all just feels right. And I shared with Ethan how I was sad that we (I) hadn’t seen the cardinal for a while. I told him that I kept looking but no luck and I told him that when I was running in the state park I was hoping to see you there because I saw you there before. And then we got back in the car to make it to school. We were driving out when Ethan yelled at me to stop. He said he saw you, he saw the cardinal. And at first I didn’t believe him, I didn’t see and then there you were. Sitting in the tree. We stopped and we watched and in that moment – we were happy. We both really believed it to be you. And then you turned and really looked at us. And all I can really say about that is thank you. I (we) really needed it.

And the morning then had me thinking about lots of different things. I dropped Ethan off and went to do errands. I had to go to the Grapevine to pick up donations for Sunday, and then to AC Moore and Staples. On the way there I heard a song on the radio, a silly song by the Pussycat Dolls. It was popular back when I met your Daddy and it used to be my ring tone on my cell phone. It was one of those moments where the song brought me back to a time so long ago – a time before I knew what it was like to be a mommy. Before I knew the love and before I understood family in a whole different way. Anyways, I don’t really remember the name of the song but the whole catch line was “Dontcha wish your girlfriend was hot like me?” And for some reason I remember how Uncle Steve, your godfather, used to make fun of me for having that as my ringtone. And it just took me to a different time.

Later in the day I heard a song that took me to a different day – much further back – about 17 or 18 years ago. Again, I don’t really remember the name of the song but it was a poppy, dance song with the lines “100% true love”. The day was a long time ago in Boston in the summer. It was Gay Pride weekend and I was celebrating with friends. It was a beautiful day, we partied in the streets after the parade and ended up at a big block party and then a club. It was a great, happy day. And it got me thinking that things were much simpler then – in so many ways. And it also got me thinking about all the pieces of the puzzle and all the things that make us who we are – all the things that end up defining us. And sometimes when I think about that I get sad because you didn’t get to have all those fun life lessons. Your life lessons were serious and severe and quick. You learned more and were so much wiser than so many in such a short time. And you taught me more than most people would ever be lucky enough to learn.

All this to say that I try to remember the journey. And I try to remember what Dr. Weiss talks about – about life being so multi-dimensional and it is so much more than just what we have in our physical bodies. And that there are a myriad of lives and relationships we experience and that we choose what our experience is. And that means you chose me. And I feel honored, brokenhearted but honored.

With so much love,