She is a friend of my mom's and when I asked if I could submit an essay she simply said yes. My mom also wrote an essay about losing her dad, my Giddo (grandfather in Arabic). I was only 18 months old or so when he died, so I don't have any memories of him. Just pictures and stories. His wife, my Sitto, died in May, while Mr. E and I were on our mini honeymoon. It was expected and it was time, and we had a wonderful visit just a few days before her death. I am getting teared up now...just thinking how Sitto told us "young love is the best love," how we told her I was expecting...when I never told her I was expecting Blue. It would have been too confusing for her. I was unmarried, she had Alzheimer's.
Anyway...I asked my dad to go to the book event with me because my mom couldn't go, and though I thought it might be fine to go alone I'm really glad I didn't. Because when Silvia introduced the contributors, and asked me to stand up, I. Lost. My. Shit. I don't know why. I was sad when we got there, because when I think about the essay I wrote for the book, I think about the ending and it still makes me cry. So I was thinking about that. And the couple sitting next to me lost a young adult daughter to a car accident, and the dad was crying and when I see other people cry, not just men, I cry too. I don't even have to know them, obviously. So when Silvia asked me to stand up, and she praised my essay as one of the most touching in the book, or something like that, I don't even remember, I burst into tears. I had to sit down. I even made a little gasping, crying sound! And I saw my dads eyes for a millisecond because I couldn't look at him either because he was crying too. If I remember correctly, I saw my dad cry two times in my life before Blue died. And since, I've seen him cry more than twice. Was he previously hiding his crying from me before because it wasn't about me? Or was he never really crying about stuff? I don't know. I'm balling right now and I don't know why either. (Hormones?)
Another anyway...More than one woman came up to me after the program and shared her story of baby loss. And that was gratifying. Eventually I pulled myself together enough to talk to the people in the room. In the end, it felt so nice to make those connections in the real world, and to be able to help another BLM. That's the whole point of this, right?
Here's the end of my essay. Another gratifying thing was that I advised Sylvia as to an ownership clause for her to publish the work of the contributors without controlling our own use of it. So it's totally legit that I am sharing it here. If you want the whole thing, let me know and I will post. It's only the last three little sentences that get me, but I had to provide a lead in. You may recognize a few lines, as I wrote the essay based on six months of blog posts. (Love to my loyal fans!)
I’m not sure when I stopped wanting to die. Somewhere in the way that life just went on, it started moving on for me too. The heavy fog of my sadness began to burn off slowly, without my really knowing it. I don’t mind thinking that the sun had come out. Still some days my grief is anything but pure. Some days it is so much anger and frustration it is rage. Some days I am still irritable. Some days I am belligerent. Some days, still, I am brittle, unpredictable, and utterly inconsolable.But these are not the early days, and many days I feel light. The dark days are shorter, are less dark, and are fewer and further between. I may still not like where I am, but I am getting somewhere.And everywhere I go, I know I’m not alone. My baby travels with me. His name is Blue. With a capital “B.” My baby’s name is Blue.