As I take a slow walk down memory lane, I consider those things about you that will always make me smile, things like the very idea that another little person was growing inside me, how active you were, how you often did somersaults in out monthly scans or how much probing it took for us to finally find out you were a girl. I was watching one of your videos just moments ago; in it you were on your head again, hands wrapping and unwrapping around your knees, kicking against me, strongly. I haven’t watched that video in months, I used to sit staring at it for a long time after I received it from the doctor, crying and holding onto this laptop screen as if by doing so I could alter the course of history. But I can’t, so I gather myself up now and I simply smile at the baby who should have been turning one tomorrow and I say thank you for entering my life, no matter how briefly.
What can any one life, especially one that lived for such a short time really matter one may ask? A lot, your life matters very much is my answer, you matter very much. You taught me things which I carry with me, you taught our family much. You taught Brady to share, to open his heart to the idea of sharing his rooms and his toys. I think about Easter 2013 and that he chose his best Easter egg and told me he was keeping it for you, I also think about the wooden house he was decorating for you for weeks using several colours of highlighters and colour pens, changing his mind so many times about what the perfect colour was that it’s now a multi-coloured wooden house.
You taught me that I am able to love beyond the limits I set for myself, you made me realise that my life was not as complete as I thought it was, that there was something missing. You made me realise I could be a mother beyond nurturing alone. You confirmed that mothering doesn’t begin when you hold your child in your arms; it begins with the very idea of that child. You taught me what it is to treasure and protect the significance of life.
You taught both dad and I that living isn’t achieving work success alone; living is about making sacrifices for the greater good of your family, parenting is about giving your children your presence. Your absence is felt every day; we have felt it these last 364 days and we feel it every time a day goes by without you. We will never hear you crying, we will never hear your laughter, we will never wipe your tears and comfort you when you’re not feeling well, there will never be scolding or bickering, none of that, but that doesn’t diminish that we are your parents and we love you more than you will ever know. I lay in bed with dad this morning and he said he will never get to be over protective of you, he is wrong; every day we acknowledge you as our daughter we protect your memory and your life. We say to the world, she is.