I thought I’d take today’s prompt and write two letters based on the principles in the letter I wrote to Joe. One to myself. One to Zoey.
I’m Sorry. I forgive you. Thank you. I love you. I hope.
I’m sorry you’re here. I’m sorry you’re writing stupid letters to yourself after losing your child. I’m sorry it’s so hard to breath sometimes. I’m sorry you’re trapped in a really crappy club (although you are among amazing people). I’m sorry you feel like you’re losing it. I’m sorry you sometimes feel like it’s your fault. I’m sorry you feel like you failed her.
I forgive you for acting irrationally at times. For forgetting things. For feeling like you don’t have it all together. I forgive you for being angry. It’s normal. You can’t say goodbye to the biggest part of your life without repercussions. Give yourself some grace. Time. Patience. I forgive you for not being able to keep her here. You know in your heart you did everything you could for that sweet baby girl. And I know that saying you forgive yourself is a world away from believing it. But keep trying. Someday you’ll make peace with it.
Thank you for giving yourself and your body over to a tiny little human. For giving her a chance. And for giving yourself a chance to grieve. To survive. To find beauty and joy again. For finding ways to honor her and say her name. Thank you for telling her story even when it makes people uncomfortable and it breaks your heart again.
I love you. Because you are surviving. And you’re telling Zoey’s story and the stories of the other ones we’ve lost. And you’re worth it. You didn’t fail her. You cuddled her and loved her and fought for her. And you made hard decisions. And they were made because of the deep love you have for her.
I hope you always understand that it was worth it. She was worth it. I hope you don’t get bitter and angry. I know you won’t ever understand why, but I hope you don’t get too wrapped up in trying to find the answer. I hope you always feel like a mom and know you’re a good mom to her. I hope you feel joy and see beauty and every emotion is stronger because you know. I hope you appreciate this life and those in it because you know how quickly it can all be lost. I hope you look at the stars above and see her. And think of her as you watch the sun set. I hope you always remember what it was like to look into those beautiful eyes. I hope you always feel her spirit and carry her with you until your last breath.
Until we meet again.
Baby girl. My love. My life. I’m sorry you couldn’t stay. I’m sorry if I ever caused you any pain. If I didn’t tell you enough how much I love you. I’m sorry if you were bored looking at our ceiling! I’m sorry I didn’t get a chance to tell you all our stories. To bake cookies with you. Watch you in your first dance recital. Graduate. Get married. You’re probably doing so many better, amazing things with your friends but I’m sorry I don’t get to tell you how wonderful you are. I’m sorry you have to see me cry. I try really hard not to tell you how much I miss you because I don’t want you to feel bad for me, but the truth is I do miss you. Every moment.
I have nothing to forgive you for. You were everything I could have dreamed. Strong. Brave. Sweet. Cuddly. Beautiful. I know you tried so hard for us. I’m so proud of you. I want to shout to everyone “Look at her! I made her! And she’s incredible!”
Thank you for choosing me to be your mom. Thank you for making me a mom. For cuddling with me and cooing for me. For kicking those sweet little feet at me. For throwing your fist in the air and scrunching your forehead. Thank you for changing hearts and showing everyone what love is supposed to look like. You were unbelievable. I am blessed to say you were mine.
I love you. To the ends of the earth and the depth of the sea. To the moon and back. I love you more than I thought I could ever love. You opened spaces in my heart I didn’t know existed.
I hope you know how much you were wanted. How much you are loved. How much we appreciate every moment we spent in your presence. I hope you know I was in awe of you every minute. That you took my breath away. That you still do.
I hope it’s beautiful where you are. I hope you run up to your grandpa grinning with paint all over your little fingers after painting the sunset each night. I hope you and the girls have the best slumber parties full of fresh baked brownies and cookie dough ice cream. I hope someone is holding your hand while you dance in a sparkly pink tutu.
And I hope I get to hold you again someday. I love you baby girl.
Until we meet again.