Happy, happy birthday Lucy dear! Tomorrow you would be turning twelve years old. We have plans for making a ladybug cake, for ladybug balloons, and for going to that new favorite park. We hope for non-bipolar weather, of course. We hope for sunshine and general merriment.
I imagine if you were here, you would be over the whole ladybug thing. You would have packed away all ladybug paraphernalia, retired your American Girl dolls, and moved on to something else. I have no idea what that might have been. You are a question mark.
Not knowing you is hard. You are forever this mystery baby who had clever-looking eyes and not much patience for things like suctioning out your breathing tube, and needles pricking your heels. You had low muscle tone in your neck and back. You stared at your bug mobile. You had scars and bedhead and long feet that stretched and reached, toes curling around my fingers. You could pull a great sad face. You smiled. You were lovely.
I miss you.
S misses you. She knows she has a sister. She knows you aren't here to play tea party and Candy Land. L misses you. The other day he drew a picture of our family with you looking down at us from the top of a cloud. E misses you. He asks about why your lungs and heart didn't work by themselves. Sometimes all I can answer is, I don't know, Buddy.
Today, as we run errands and make decisions about which base boards to put in after the dry wall is sanded and painted, you will be in my mind. Today, as I feel this new baby, this last baby, kick about inside me, I will think back twelve years to when my first baby kicked inside me. Before you, and all of us, were put to The Test. You passed that test, and maybe I'll be strong enough to pass it, too. I'm still working on it.
I love you.