Dear Ethan V

Dear Ethan,

 

Sunday is the two-year anniversary of losing you. Two weeks later is the two-year anniversary of finding out we’d lost you.

 

The last couple weeks have been full of celebration around our house—first Henry’s birthday and aunts and uncles coming home, then Christmas, and last night, New Year’s Eve. Sometimes the celebration felt overwhelming; there have been a lot of people in our smallish house.  But as time went on, I realized that my growing anxiety was not totally about what was happening in the moment, but more about what I knew was on the horizon.

 

I’ve heard about too many babies lost in miscarriage this year, and every time, I think of you. These last few weeks, especially after learning a friend had lost three babies this year, different moments of my experience with you have been coming back to me. The ultrasound at the hospital, coming home and accidentally waking Jacob from a nap, the D&C, all the mornings I struggled to get out of bed, the weekends when your daddy let me sleep as long as possible, crying when I went to pray a rosary or even to say grace. Tears keep springing to my eyes, like when I think about going to Mass next Sunday, but life has been so busy, I haven’t had a chance to really let the emotions be what they are, to let myself cry.

 

Last night, after we’d rung in the new year, there was quiet in the house. I’ve been staying up later and later recently, reading before bed, sometimes to escape the sadness that would rush over me if I let it. Last night, I did. And I finally found the words to tell your daddy what I was feeling: I missed you.

 

Having January approach is harder than July, when your due date was, because January was the real experience of you. I’ve accepted that you were never going to be born, so that month isn’t so bad. I know other babies that were born in July that year and celebrating their lives is a good thing.

 

But losing you still hurts. I see families with three living children, and even though I know they might have lost other children as well, I feel like something’s missing from mine. I always will. You are missing. You were here, and now you’re not. Without this happening, we wouldn’t have Henry, and he is an angel, truly. And I’ve been focusing on that. But at the same time, we don’t have you, and that matters, too.

 

I miss you, Ethan. You were with us for a short time, but you did so, so much. You brought me closer to God. You taught me the power of prayer—not my own, but that of others for me. You gave me the strength and hope to talk about miscarriage and grieving on this blog, and touched so many people, helped give so many other women the knowledge that they are not alone, and helped those who have not had this experience understand it better. You made me realize what a gift our other children are, what a gift my own life is, what a gift all life is.

 

I am grateful for every moment I had with you, and for every moment the memory of you brings me closer to eternal life. All the same, I miss you. I love you, and I miss you.

 

Love,
Mom

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