Monday, August 16, 2010

It Creeps Up On You

Standing in the cooler at work last night, I felt the rush of a memory. Maybe it was a sound, but I could feel the hospital. Earlier that day, as I waited on a customer, something in the air smelled JUST like Tommy for just a second. When we are low on fuel, an alarm sounds in the back room. It sounds exactly like the telemetry monitors. It seems like I can't get away from it. I'm constantly bombarded with sights, sounds and smells that trigger memories.

There are times when I look at pictures or watch videos. Maybe I clutch one of his blankets or an outfit and try to remember. Those are the times when he feels the most far away from me. The harder I try to remember what he smelled like or what his voice sounded like, the more distant the memories become. I have to concentrate on the picture for a second to recall the feelings.

The very same day, I can go outside and see a butterfly or a flower and without even trying, I can FEEL him all around me. I can't look into a small child's eyes without wondering first of all if he "knows" me because Tommy told him about me and secondly I wonder when Tommy would have walked and how tall he would be now. I miss that smile.

I'm torn between letting go and just letting the memories happen and holding onto them tightly so I never forget.

I think what I miss the most is how he smelled. My favorite thing in the world was the way the top of his head smelled. I have read that parents bond with their children by smell, specifically, the top of the head. I have the hospital gown he was wearing when he died, but it stopped smelling like him a long time ago despite putting it in a ziplock bag. While he was in the hospital, I kept myself busy doing laundry. I never knew he would never come home again and that I was washing away all of his precious smell. Every stitch he owned and every sheet and blanket were washed and put away, waiting for his return that never happened. I even washed Wub the night before he died because it was looking so cruddy. Regrets.

I never knew memories would be such a challenge to hold on to.

1 comment:

Michelle Earnhart said...

Have you in my thoughts and prayers as always. Happy Birthday to you, Sweetie Pie!!

Diagram of Tommy's Heart Defects

Diagram of Tommy's Heart Defects
Double Inlet Left Ventricle with Transpostion of the Great Arteries