Music and memories
Saturday I took Kathleen to see Elizabeth Mitchell (our morning music in the afternoon!). I enjoyed it (Kathleen slept through it in her sling), though some moments made me sad. Two songs almost brought me to tears.
When they played "Three Little Birds," a montage of Henry images played through my head: sitting on the end of our couch feeding him a bottle with his surgery approaching, me singing along almost desperate to believe that "every little thing's gonna be alright"; smiling at him in the bright morning light of his room in the CICU, scared, but hopeful; standing with Brian's brother and sister next to Henry's bed, the night he almost died in October, when we still weren't quite sure he was going to make it . . .
They ended with "Peace Like a River." This is one of the songs I sang to Henry all the time. It was the only song I picked for his funeral. I felt like I should choose music and readings that were meaningful, but I couldn't think. I think Brian suggested something from the CD, and that was the first thing that came to mind. Henry did bring me peace and love and joy, though so often during his life I felt fear and anger and frustration.
At the show, another mama came over, noticing I had a very little one. Both our babies were two months old. We chatted about front carriers and neck strength and when they could face forward. Before I could ask her name or where she was from, she posed "the question." Is she your first?
I don't have trouble with this one. No, our second. It's the follow up that gets me every time. Oh, how old is your first? I took a deep breath. He passed away just over a year ago. He was 6 1/2 months old. I had a chance to say that he spent half his life in the hospital, but not that I played Elizabeth Mitchell for him every morning. She murmured an I'm sorry. And then she was gone. No nice to meet you, no enjoy the show. Just gone.
Finally we meet
When the show ended, I went over to talk to Birdie's Mama. We have been emailing and talking and not quite managing to get together, so it was good to finally see her and especially to meet her sweet Holdyn. We stood there after the show, both teary, recognizing each other's happy and sad, meeting each other's second baby for the first time and honoring the ones we were missing.