My dearest son Brendan Bjørn, how has it been a year since I saw you leave me? Time has been at a standstill since you took your last breath. I have been frozen, lost in the emotional chaos of grief. One year. How can it be?
I still hope it’s just a nightmare from which I will wake relieved though traumatised. But I know it isn’t just a nightmare.
I know this is life’s cruel reality one year on.
I went into your bedroom yesterday, memories hidden behind the closed door. There were cobwebs in the corner. Dust on the dresser. I felt shame and guilt that I’ve let it go like this for so long. If you saw, you’ll know that I’ve cleaned it now, although there is still much more to do.
I think it’s time for me to begin the thaw; to begin sorting through your things to pass them on to others in need. I plan to bring your talking Mother Goose to your school. I imagine your former fellow students will enjoy it as much as you did. I’ll bring other toys of yours to share, too. I hope that makes you happy, my beautiful angel.
Your oxygen tanks are still here, never having been collected. I must call about those again. There is so much I need to get sorted, so much I need to decide, so much to do. But not today. No, not today.
Today I will try to forget you in those last horrifying moments which continue to terrorise my mind.
Today I will try to remember only your laughter and the beaming smile that accompanied it for nearly 18 years.
Today I will try to feel again that sense of wholeness when I first held you in my arms all those years ago as you scowled at the bright operating room lights and I told you not to worry because I had you…I had you.
Today I will try to think on only the good moments – which were immeasurable – filled with such a magical unconditional love and pureness of soul.
I hope you know that you meant everything to me and how blessed and thankful I am to have been your mother.
I hope I never failed you.
I hope you only ever felt completely and beautifully loved, for you were the very best of this world.
Your brother misses you, too, but I have no doubts you know that, for the special bond the two of you shared was a sight to behold. How privileged I was to witness that love! I hope you’re smiling when we talk of you and that it brings you joy to watch over us as we cherish our memories of you. I have to think that you are.
I have to believe.
Today I will try to be a little better than I was the day before. I will try the same again tomorrow and then the day after. I will keep trying, for you, my beloved Brendan Bjørn, and for your amazing younger brother.
Today I will try, but I know I will fail for the most part because I am so utterly broken…still…one year on. I am numb yet I am in agony. I am lost yet I am all too aware of where I am at as I sit here typing this and realise a year ago this time you had less than an hour to live. 7:44am draws near.
You see how I’ve already failed at forgetting those last horrifying moments?
I must try to give myself the grace to just be in the day that it is because I know that is what you would want for me.
These words are so vastly insufficient, but I miss you, angel boy. Every moment of every day with every fiber of my being, I miss you. Thank you for all that you gave to me and all that you taught me. Thank you for being my son. I was truly, truly blessed to be your mother.
I love you, baby, forever and ever and ever,