Friday, May 13, 2011


"Mommy, next time, will Daddy be alive?" Tyler asked, from his carseat.

Terms of chronology are vague at our house: 'next time' means any time to come, and 'lasterday' means any time previous to this moment.

I spoke to him over my shoulder as I drove. "No, lovey. He's in heaven. He gets to stay there."

"So do you mean he really died? He really got sick? And he really died?"

"He really did, buddy. Really, really."

His face crumpled with sadness and he began to cry.

"But, Mommy, I can't remember him. I can't remember what he looks like."

A knife through my heart, these words. My sweet child suddenly realizing that his memories are fading. I turned to look at him, our teary faces mirroring one another.

"Oh, Tyler, I'll help you, buddy. We have so many pictures. I'll show you, honey. I'll show you."

"No. No. I don't want pictures. I want all of him. I want his whole body - with bones in him. I want him with bones!" He cried and cried.

Me, too, Tyler. I do too. I want all of him, with bones in him.

My children are each coming to their own realizations of what this means. The truth of it all, the permanence. It is so much to hold their hearts. A high calling, a heavy burden, one I will never, ever lay down.

In the meantime, I am quickly putting together a memory book that he can look at until it wears out.

And then I'll make him another one.

Please, God, help him remember.

Please, let him remember.


shellycoulter said...

Oh, Tricia! With two boys of my own, my mama heart knows the love you have for those boys but cannot imagine how hard your path is. I have followed your blog and your journey and I am praying with everything in me for those two sweet boys! I'm praying now and I think I will be for MANY years to come. Peace to you!

jenny winstead said...

i love his blue "daddy" shirt in the picture on the parkbench. and i love your reflection in his sunglasses...oh how i know you much ache. praying for you. praying praying praying.

Amy said...

I am praying for you with tears streaming down my face.

Aimee said...

Tricia, you don't know me--I found out about your blog several months ago through a link on Challies. I want to tell you, I am very grateful that you have chosen to share this difficult journey you are on. The way you use your gift with words always serves to remind me that my troubles are small and our God is big. Thank you. Thank you for writing, and thank you for being transparent in all of this. I know unexpected change, but I can never presume to say that I know what you are going through. Please know that I pray for you and your boys. --Aimee in Texas

Claire said...

Praying with you, dear Tricia.

The Kennedy Krew said...

Oh sweet heart aches for you! Lord please help those boys remember!!!!

Janet said...

Praying for you and your boys... It isn't enough, I know, but at least you know that a stranger in Canada is praying with tears streaming. Give your boys an extra hug today from this Granny.

Penny said...

My daughter posted a link to this post on her facebook yesterday, with the comment that she should have known better than read your blog at work, because she was sitting at her desk in tears. (I've been reading your blog since a friend posted the link on her blog not long after you lost Rob.) I am now swallowing a big lump and blinking back the tears. I pray Ty remembers how he felt sitting there on his daddy's shoulders. The security and "safeness" of it all. The pictures will help, Tricia, they really will. I have childhood pictures, from Tyler's age, that conjure up smells and feelings that were not captured on paper. I do, however, understand what he means by wanting his daddy "with his bones inside him." Yesterday(at 46), I caught a brief glimpse of my grandmother on a slideshow, and physically ached to "feel" her. It breaks my heart that Ty and Tuck have to experience that at their ages. :(
BTW Your little one not only looks just like you, but also expresses himself well like you. Both are good things. He is beautiful inside and out~ they both are.

Terry said...

dear most favourite of these pictures is the one of robb wearing those big sun glasses and when you click on to make the photo bigger, then there you are with one of your little boys!
just the apple of your sweetheart's eyes! terry