Dear Jakey,

I feel a little like we were in a fight. Not really a real fight. More of a secret fight. You remember those don’t you?  The ones I get in with people when I know that it’s mostly me being annoyed by things I shouldn’t be. The ones that are more a “me problem” than a “them problem”. I never thought I would have you be on the receiving end of one but it happened. I think for the last several months I’ve been annoyed. Mostly annoyed that you have been gone. Annoyed that we have crossed the imaginary timeline when you have been away from me longer than you were with me. I can’t fathom that we are approaching 5 years without you in just 42 days.

And then I think you knew I was mad because you pulled back too. It felt like forever since I saw the cardinal. Months really. And I didn’t realize how much I relied on those sightings to get me through. And other people would see you and instead of feeling good about that, it actually ticked me off. And that is when the secret fight started. It was so secret that it wasn’t until the last week or so that I realized I was even in it.

But then things started to change. And I realized that I didn’t need to see the cardinal to have you near me. And that even when I push away or try to pretend life is fine,  the reality is that life without you is impossible. I had many JHFH deliveries set up over a short amount of time this quarter. And each and every one of them was powerful. And in two of them I found myself overwrought because the kids were you. One was so close to how I remember you. And she moved like you and she sounded like you. And I actually had to abruptly leave. It was the first time I had heard some of those sounds in almost 5 years. And it made me sad in a selfish way too. Sad that there is so much different in today’s world that we never got to share. Sad that you never got to try out and upsee to go on walks with us or to pick up Ethan or to go bowling. Or anything.

Another delivery was you at 9. Which is how old you are now. He was dressed so handsome. Kind of how I dressed you. And I missed you so much. And I wonder why we didn’t get to see you grow older. It never gets easier. I am better at keeping the sadness at bay but it is always there. And most times the business of JHFH is my lifesaver but sometimes it is just hard. And I feel like I am in a secret fight with the world.

But as usual you keep me grounded and save me from myself. Monday I picked Ethan up a few minutes early. And walking home before the madness of dismissal, we saw you. You flew in front of us and with no one else in the street we could stop and enjoy it. And it just felt better. We need you near us.

Last night, or really early this morning, you were with me again. I was making that avocado mix that I know you loved (even though Ms. Kelly always wanted to feed you pizza when she saw me making it for you!). And I was making you your meds. I was right back there Jakey. And it crushed me a little bit more because all I really want to be doing now is getting your food and meds together, not writing you this letter.

Love you Always,