I was telling my therapist today that the approach of Thomas' birthday gets easier each year. Because somehow, inexplicably, it does.
And yet still I find myself drifting back, pulled into another time - another life - by the warmer February breezes and the thawing snow. Remembering a time that seems like such a very long time ago, now.
I'll say it until the day I die; I still can't believe it. I can't believe he was here and gone. So fast. The more time passes, the more it feels like a hazy dream. The pregnancy, his birth, his death, our struggle to recover.
Our lives have slipped back into an easy routine, free from fertility treatments and panicked trips to the doctor for betas and ultrasounds.
It's very calm here. Safe and quiet.
It's nearly impossible for me to fathom what almost was in the midst of this gentle peace we've so carefully cultivated.
We went from parents to empty-nesters in just 20 hours. And now we walk together in this strange fringe world where we almost belong. Where people almost see us as parents. Where we almost, but don't quite, have experience raising a child.
I used to love to sit on the dock and watch the lake at my Grandparents' cottage when I was a child. It fascinated me to see it glide effortlessly, shimmering in the sunlight. It never occurred to me that the calm, placid surface was moving so gently because of the currents coursing beneath the surface. So much unseen. So much movement and darkness and pull and swirl and flow. Just the gentle, sun-touched beauty on the surface - that's all I saw.
We are the lake.