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Photo shows a navy scarf with red and white anchors.The sun rises as the phone call reaches Mayberry–a frighteningly premature start for my nephew. Oh no. Unlike sleep, you can’t wipe shock from your eyes.

I can, however, fumble to get dressed, stumble to the car, and travel with Stockton from here to there. We join the vigil, the celebration, the I-don’t-have-the-vocabulary-for-this moment after moment after moment. Especially the time when my scrubbed clean fingertip gently touches the tiniest fingers and the tiniest toes, awestruck.

Days later, blankets block light, but not sorrow. My heart rate drops in slumber. I awake warm and secure. Soft layers muffle sound. I wonder, is this is how we feel in the womb? How we feel in protective isolettes? How we feel swaddled and hugged by mom or dad? There’s no way to know.

Uncertainty refuses to leave, and answers never come. In loss, it’s hard to stay open-hearted instead of closing down. It’s a choice to love.

Days later, the silver tea kettle whistles, and I choose a mug. Steamy water floods the bag of herbs; I inhale soothing vapors. Holding the warmth, I allow myself to cherish him and remember the incredible love his parents gave him. It will take plenty of cups of tea and patience to sit with this grief. I choose to sit. I choose to love.

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7 Comments Add yours

  1. Steph McCoy says:

    Such heartbreaking news. I will keep you and your family in prayer.

  2. Oh,Susan. Thinking of you and your family. Lots of tea, love and talking. No need to reply to this.

  3. Casee says:

    My prayers for your family. These are the times when words fail. You are on my mind and in my heart.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I will cherish your thoughts forever
    Big G

  5. Allison says:

    Thank you for your beautiful tribute to your nephew, Alexander. He loved his Aunt Sooze from the first grasp. ❤️
    Love you, Sis.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Beautiful. You are all in our prayers. Love ya. Jenn

  7. Colleen says:

    Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal. Cherish the memories and all of the precious moments.
    My heart aches for you and your family.
    All my love, cousin Colleen

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