I know that my blog has been plastered with pictures and happy posts about Collen since August. He is my world right now. Every second of every day is consumed with being Collen's mommy, and I love every second of it.
But, I'd be lying if I said I didn't struggle with being Collen's mommy while aching to mother Ayden at the same time. Yes, yes....I know...I will always be Ayden's mommy. I will continue to "mother" him even while he isn't physically here (I know some of my readers too well, huh?! Already anticipating comments....), but be real....he isn't here. I can't kiss him. I can't bathe him. I can't dress him. I can't become a nervous wreck over him. He isn't here for me to be mommy to him. I miss him so, so much. My grieving process was sort of put on hold when Collen was born, so my ability to take it one day at a time has been condensed. Now, the grief hits me hard and then may not hit me for a few days or weeks. Example: Jeremy was watching Collen for me while I did some cleaning. They were in our room, and Jeremy was showing him videos on the computer. All of a sudden, I hear Ayden's voice coming from the other room. I hear that adorable, boyish coo of his, and I just broke down....with a clorox wipe in my hand. It just hits harder now.....
Since Collen was born, I've been completely wrapped up in taking care of him....as I should be. But I've struggled because my time with Ayden and my present with Collen are becoming overlapped in my mind. This happened during my pregnancy with Collen as well. For 18 out of 25 months, I was pregnant....with two boys. For a span of 7 months, I was a mom to our beautiful Ayden....then he was taken away....my arms were empty....and then my womb became full again. Your mind can play tricks on you when two pregnancies are so close together....especially when the child from your first is no longer with you. You begin to relive your pregnancy with that child. Every movement Collen made, I compared to Ayden. And now that he's here, every facial expression, every coo, every milestone, I compare with Ayden. Their brothers.....of course we're going to compare!
I find myself struggling because I don't feel right about being happy again. Now, that doesn't mean that I don't feel like I should be happy. I know I have every right to and that it's healthy for me to be so full of joy again. But, if I'm honest with myself, I will never be as happy as I once was. My life will never hold the magnitude of joy that it once did. That's what life and loss will do, I guess.
I don't grieve Ayden as I used to. The pain of mourning him actually helped me feel closer to him. Now, it's as if I can feel him fading....the distance is crippling. My memories are becoming fuzzy as I make new memories with Collen. I don't in any way resent this, it's just hard. I can still hear his laugh. I can still hear his sweet voice, but at times, they start to slip away. Collen reminds us so much of Ayden sometimes. In those moments, it's almost as if they are the same baby. When I see Ayden's smile on Collen's face.....I have them both with me.
As Collen grows and moves past the 4 month mark, my memories with Ayden will become even more distant. He'll always be 4 months old. That's where my memories stop. And that breaks my heart. I have a tough time even imagining Collen older than 4 months old. I find myself soaking up every moment with him because I'm afraid that he'll only make it to 4 months old too. I find myself looking towards December 22nd almost in a dreading sort of way....wondering if he will be with us then. I know that sounds kind of morbid to some of you, but that's just where my mind goes after what we've been through.
I have full confidence that Collen WILL make it 4 months old, but my mind and my heart (and my reasoning) conflict a lot.
Ayden will always be with me. I will always be his mother. I just wish everyone around me could know me as Ayden AND Collen's mother.