Saturday, May 29, 2010

Three years ago today

A baby boy was born

I wish I had a picture of a three year old to show you. I wish I could tell you of big boy antics. I wish there were a cake with three candles. 

Instead, I worked in his garden , planting the delphinium I bought for his birthday, replanting the dahlia tubers I dug up in the fall, weeding, moving, spending time thinking of this day three years ago when a baby boy was born and mama came into being, when a heart swelled with love and pride months before it broke. 

Three years ago today.
Happy birthday, my sweet boy. 
Happy birthday, Henry. 

Thursday, May 27, 2010


Brian graduated last weekend. It was a two-year program, but he chipped away at prerequisites for two and half years before that. It feels like a long time coming, this graduation.

He started taking classes, the fall we got married. He was taking A&P while I was pregnant with Henry. He read microbiology to Henry in the hospital. He took a final the day after Henry died. He was holed up in his office studying most of my pregnancy with Kathleen. He studied for a final in the hospital room while she was hours old. He lamented having to go study when Kathleen got bigger and started holding our her arms to him as he walked through the room. Through everything, he managed to graduate with honors. While I was sleeping and journaling and blogging and dragging myself through tiny amounts of work, he was trudging through a really tough program—and excelling.

I'm proud of him. And I'm really, really, really glad he's done.

I'm looking forward to summer and gardening and canoeing and fires in the chiminea and family and just time. And it has begun.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother's Day

Kathleen and I were up much too early today, so I laid on the couch for an hour half watching her play and periodically hoisting her on to the couch so she could cuddle with me. She is usually too busy these days, this girl of mine, too busy to sit on my lap. Maybe she just wasn't feeling well, or maybe she knew it was Mother's Day. Either way, we had lots of snuggles today. 

And in the late afternoon, I cut three clumps of lilacs, one for each of his years, wrapped them in a wet paper towel and then in foil. I clicked Kathleen in her car seat and we drove to the cemetery together. I put the fragrant flowers on Henry's grave, knowing they would likely be stolen or tossed or blown away by the wind. I stopped to sniff them deeply, spoke briefly to Henry, and then got back in the car. I peeked into the back and smiled at Kathleen before we headed home again. 

This holiday no longer paralyzes me. I can walk down the card aisle without crying. I can (though I didn't) go out to brunch. 

But still it is laughter and tears, snuggles and the cemetery.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

The other tree

Henry has two trees, the peach tree I wrote about recently, which we bought for him, and a hawthorne tree that came as a surprise gift in late May 2008. We planted it on his first birthday, and as neighbors walked by on that lovely May day, Brian told them that the tree was for Henry and that it was his birthday.

While we were digging the hole to plant the tree, we found this:

I looked out this morning and noticed that the flowers in Henry's color were about ready to pop, and a few hours later on this gray day, they had. Here they are, a flash of red, a bit of bright in the gloom.