In 1984 pretty much everyone I loved was still alive. I had no idea what a horrible heartbreaking, soul-crushing, gut-wrenching experience going through the death of a loved one was. Unfortunately she did -- she had already lost so much in her life, her parents having died when she was a girl.
She was 21 when he was born and already the mother of a beautiful little girl. He was an adorable baby, doted on by mom, dad, sister and everyone else. When he died that July day, at the age of 5 months, it was like being in a nightmare that you could not wake up from. She went from being a young mother of two to a grieving parent. The only thing that stopped her from completely falling apart was knowing that she had a child to care for, a child that was too young to understand much beyond that yesterday she had a baby brother and now she didn't.
The funeral was hearbreaking, the coffin so tiny. What was beautiful was the way family and friends rallied around them. I had never seen such an outpouring of love before.
I was there the night he was born; I was there the night he died. Through her I experienced the highs & the lows. The unparalled joy of giving birth & the horror of burying your child. That little boy's life taught me so much about love, compassion and sadness.
I wonder what he would be like today -- would he have his mother's goofy grace and his dad's intellect? Did he inherit her friendly nature, to handle bad situations with such dignity & composure? Did he like airplanes like his dad? I miss this little boy and I grieve for not having the opportunity to have gotten to know him.