Happy New Year, baby.
You would have been three this past month. I had all of these fancy things to say about missing you. But I find that writing them out and putting them all together into intelligible language is an impossible task.
So, I'll keep this simple.
I missed you this year.
I missed your lisping speech.
I missed your ponytails.
I missed your preferences and dislikes.
I missed taking you to your first movie. I wonder what we would have gone to see.
I missed you getting into my pocketbook and making a mess of all of my cosmetics.
I missed you having a favorite baby doll.
I missed moving you into a "big girl" bed.
I missed painting your nails.
I missed you learning your letters.
I missed you picking flowers, and bringing me crushed bouquets.
I missed seeing you as a big sister and as a little sister.
I missed your sass.
I missed your "I love you mommie".
I think people wonder about how you can possibly miss someone who was in your life for such a short period of time.
I answer back that you were not in my life for that short time only- that you are still here, growing in leaps and bounds.
The strangest thing about this situation is that unlike other people who I have loved, and who have died- you are aging in my head.
I miss the human that you are-would have been.
In my mind's eye, you have a longer body and longer hair and speech and knowledge- and you are whole. My mind never sees your "anomalies".
I see a small girl clomping along with my high heels on, a string of beads, and way too much lipstick.
There is no twisted spine. There are no misplaced or forgotten organs. Your legs are strong and long and smooth. You are vibrant and warm.
You are alive.
You are my oldest, other daughter.
Not just the baby who died. Not just a sad story in the past- and most definitely not a source of pain.
Well, not so much any longer.
I can feel the joy entering in again- in slow spurts. It has taken time and I don't know how much is due to your big brother and little sister. I have learned not to question the good- the joy is just there and I am grateful.
I will continue to miss you in the coming year, I am certain. I will pine for you on some days.
On some days I will walk in a fog of longing, that physical sensation of holding you in my arms will be difficult to work through- the phantom baby syndrome.
On some days I will come back here and write about how darkness is enveloping me and how I don't think I can take another step.
I miss your tiny hand in mine- how could I not have days where the entire world is an empty place because you are not here?
I will miss you most desperately, each day as I go through the tasks that move me from moment to moment.
One task leading to another, until a full day of working leads into one day, leading into one week, leading into one month, leading into one year, and finally all of these quiet little tasks will lead into the stuff of one lifetime- I will miss you most desperately over the course of one lifetime- mine.
I will continue to miss you until I can no longer recall the feel of your lips against mine. Your soft skin. Your feet in the palm of my hand.
And on the day that I do not miss you, then I think it is safe to assume that someone here, will be missing me.