I’ve learned to watch the calendar closely through scrunched eyes. It’s a slow march up to the date but with all other aspects of time whipping by me. I don’t want it to sneak up on me, catch me unguarded against the tidal wave. I’ve watched it creep up, marking three years since Piper died. Giving me a shocking reminder of times passage.
How has it been that long? I ask Beau. In one instance I can blink my eyes and feel her kick, recall the joy of her and the horror of her quick death. Then upon opening them I’m thrust in to the now and am acutely aware of how much time separates me from her.
Only when I see it coming do I unlock the scary, painful memories. I reach for them, touching each one gently, trying them on before moving to the next. You see I need to look, to remember how we survived. I play them back in my head ending with her, her in my arms. Our first baby girl.
i rarely touch her things now. It used to be a ritual of mine to sit amongst her belongings. To fold all of her clothes. To imagine the events that would no longer happen. It lessened after time taught me how to integrate my grief in with my happy. But today I opened the box, looking at the lock of hair and that tiny, pink hat. I spent some time with the single photo I have of her, hating to admit how hard I look for similarities between her and her baby sister. Slender feet and fingers. Blonde. Wrinkled and perfect.
This anniversary of Pipe’s death coming just a month after my brother, Taylor’s, tragic death has left my tribe reeling and is forcing me to question all sorts of big life things. My family is currently learning to live without our T and it ain’t smooth sailing although my mother and father’s grace is inspiring.
It’s not easy being positive or trusting of my own happy. I’m a little leery going forward. My path more than shaky. Perhaps if I say it aloud it will help hold me accountable.
My mission this year, Piper, is to slow down. To breathe in these fleeting moments and learn to meditate on the positive. To pay attention and make time my accomplice. Pipes never took a breath and T walked this earth for 28 years but it will never be enough. All I have are those memories I haphazardly collected. A feeling, a flash, a look. I hope to be intentional as I create memories with those I love. To be purposeful in selecting my joy.
We miss you and all that was to follow. You were so very loved and are so very appreciated. It always makes me happy to say your sis has your nose. Even Lolly thinks so.
Our Piper Kai passed away early July 11, 2016 and was born still July 13, 2016 secondary to a rare, non-genetic umbilical cord complication, following a healthy pregnancy, nearly full term. 6 lbs, 4 ounces. Her rainbow baby sis was born just 13 months later, 5 weeks premature, and surviving the same complication her sister suffered shocking everyone including our medical team. She and I are 1 in 10,000. We may be a statistic but I count it as a miracle, dictated by our first girl.
Rest easy, Piper Kai Bennett. Until we meet again.