She’s Still Gone

Life is excruciating.

Loneliness abounds.

Another year is coming to an end.

Grief and gratitude surrounds.

Recently, I decided to “unpack” Norah’s belongings and place them in a cupboard next to my bed until I can find a more suitable location. Within this cupboard is her entire life. The only physical items we have left of her.

The last, unwashed pjs she wore the night before she died, spit up included. (Left)

The romper she was wearing when she died – cut off of her by the heroic first responders, and salvaged from hospital biohazard by a dear friend. (Right)

Bottles that stored the milk that nourished her sweet body.

A blanket made by her Nana.

A baptism gown purchased by her Bia.

A nightlight given by her Godmother.

A cross that hung in her room – with prayers for blessings and protection.

A jewelry box with her birthstone – Amethyst 💜

An unused beach towel with her name.

Shoes to match with her sisters – that she never grew in to.

A Christmas outfit that she never wore.

Her binkies.

A wet diaper.

Her tiny socks.

The tragically beautiful pall that covered her tiny, lifeless body in the casket – smelling of formaldehyde, no matter how many times I wash it.

I feel guilty for holding on to all of this when I know there are babies in need. But I can’t let it go. It’s all that I have left.

Time has exhausted me.

Tears have burned my skin.

Platitudes and dismissive jargons have worn me down.

Loneliness has left me feeling abandoned.

My chest continues to ache and burn.

I can no longer relate to much.

Grief has changed me.

Life will never be the same.

Praying for a very gentle 2020.

Addendum:

As I finished unpacking, I walked over to my computer to see why my music was no longer audible. My screensaver had changed to double rainbows above the ocean! Jai Jagdeesh’s “In Dreams” was playing, while displaying a still image “You are Loved” – with 111 likes displayed directly underneath. I smiled.

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