I met a woman who lost her husband in combat the other day. We were with mutual friends so the conversation was pretty light. As I was saying goodbye to her, I couldn’t help but say that I was really sorry for her loss. I don’t know if they were the right words, and I don’t know if they made any difference whatsoever. Still, I knew that I had to say something. I’ve not forgotten her husband, and it’s not for the significance of the weekend that I remember him. Not a day passes where I don’t think about those who have given their all for this country and its values.
I also think of you every day.
I’m still not sure how to mention you in conversation. When I meet new people and they ask about my family, I tell them that I have two little girls. Inevitably, the next question inquires about your and Caroline’s ages. I’m still not sure what to say next. “One is five and the other would be six months,” is how I often respond. Maybe it would be better to just say, “They are five and six months.” Then again, I worry that this answer would provoke inquiries about your habits. Are you eating? Are you crawling? How do you sleep at night?
I wonder about these things, too. Would you grimace at plain oatmeal, as Caroline did at six months? Would you be crawling around the house and getting into all types of trouble? Would you be a good sleeper, unlike your big sister? But, this conversation seems heavy for new acquaintances.
I suppose that it is simply difficult to talk about those who have departed early. I am incredibly proud to be your father, and I want to find a way to talk about you that makes people feel warm and happy. You are a beautiful and perfect part of our family, and I’ll never stop talking about you. Still, I’m searching for the right way to do it.
I imagine that on this Memorial Day Weekend, there are plenty of other families who struggle with the same challenge.
Happy six months, my precious little girl! We love you and miss you so much!Dad