We visited Chase's grave this week. It was a six hour drive returning to a place that would remind us so acutely of a time of deep pain and anguish. The weather was grey and gloomy the entire trip and even if we wanted to, we would not be able to set the monument for Chase. The sancrete would never have dried with the constant drizzle. We paid our respects regardless and arranged and re-arranged the flowers we had brought for him, from us and both his grandmas. As if we were "fixing" them for him, like a parent always feels we must do. Something to busy our hands, I guess. The rain was persistent, but not obtrusive. We were able to have a good visit, if that is possible. For a moment, maybe two minutes, while Patric and I were alone at his grave and the kids were in the car, the sun poked through the clouds. It was so magical how this happened. I wish I would have pointed my camera up and just snapped a shot, in hopes that I might have deciphered something later that I couldn't comprehend in that moment. If ever I have felt it, though, it was Chase speaking to us. Looking down on us tell us he was okay.
Patric and I have had several deep conversations lately about him and where we each think he is or what he is or just what we think period. And in those conversations I have been comforted in a way only my soulmate could comfort me. It turns out that we have both been feeling Chase's presence in and around us. There have been specific moments and specific feelings, however indescribable they are, that we have communicated to each other and felt the same thing.
We are not on the same path in our journey as we were in the beginning. Patric is seeking different things that I am right now. He is comforted in different ways than I am. We feel very much the same on a lot of things, and we are both searching, but searching for different answers and different explanations. I had received several texts and emails and cards and even some packages in the mail leading up to and on Chase's birthday. My sisters, in particular, sent me some very, very touching gifts that mean so very much to me and remind me how exactly my little boy touched their lives as well. Friends of ours from all over the country sent texts, to my phone, letting us know that we were in their thoughts and offering any help that me might need to get through this last week. It wasn't until we were in bed Wednesday night laying, waiting, to fall asleep, that I realized that Patric hadn't personally received any of these things that I had. No texts, no emails, no phone calls, no package. Nothing. Nothing specifically directed to him. I know he didn't expect this, he's really not the type to even want something on an occasion like this. It is comforting to him to see that I have family and friends in my life that care enough to do this for me. But as his wife, I want to just cover him up with love from me and the kids...in hopes that he feels just as loved as we do. I know men grieve differently and have different needs in grief but it doesn't stop me from wanting to protect his feelings with some sort of force field of love from us to try to equal that which I feel. The truth is I know he has more of that from us than he ever bargained for and that's really all he will ever need. But in a time of such pain and suffering I want to make it better for him when I can't.
Returning to Chase's grave this week stirred up a lot of emotions I hadn't felt for a long time. The pain felt raw and the wound felt very fresh. It did for all of us, you could see it, hear it, and feel it from the girls as they cried from their bellies, quivering from their sobs, missing their baby brother so dearly. My anger came back. I became very mad again, like it had all just happened, recalling in my head how the events throughout those days transpired, wishing things had been done differently. So desperately wishing I had done something when I knew I should.
But this visit was about Chase and thinking about him. And I have been working on/thinking about this a lot lately....my vision of my sweet baby boy. God how I miss you sweet Chase. I can't begin to tell you how much. But I want you to have fun up there...and enjoy this birthday and all those to come...and one day, we will all be together again. I love you.