3 years, 1 year, 9 months, 1 month

It has been 3 years since we found my brother Jake dead.

It has been about 1 year since we buried Luna.

It has been 9 months since we gathered at Jen’s bedside and she breathed her last.

It has been one month since our Baby Joe was born.

It seems that the longer we live the more anniversaries and milestones we have to remember. It almost seems like every day has different memories and every day marks some meaningful event.

I have been mulling over this entry all weekend because I thought I would have something more meaningful to add to this. The truth is that the more things change, the more they stay the same. It still feels like yesterday that Jake was slicing my throat with his hand and poking my side so I would jump a mile high. It still feels like Jen is a phone call away and a drive down the street. It still feels like nothing has changed and at the same time, it feels like nothing could ever be the same. Baby Joe will never get to fall asleep cuddled into his Aunt Jen. Maggie and Joe and their cousins Grace and Lolo will never get to play crazy imagination games with their Uncle Jakey. I will never have to whine about finding Jake’s hair all over my floors or complain to Jen about how she never lets me sleep because she wants to stay up late to talk. And Luna would be 9-months now!! What would she be doing? Standing? Pulling herself up? Getting ready to walk?

Some days I can convince myself that nothing has changed and then other days I feel like my loss is dragging me around behind it leaving me bruised and battered for weeks.

It’s strange the things that remind me of my siblings. We got this baby chair for Bo that vibrates and plays music when he was born. We used up the batteries when Bo was a few months old and hadn’t replaced them until a day ago. (Yes, that was four years and two babies ago.) So I hadn’t heard the chair’s music since before Jake died and when we turned that chair on for the first time with Baby Joe in it, my brain got confused. I totally expected to find Jakey in his room doing his ridiculous exercises or something.

And of course it’s Christmas season. So everything reminds me of Jen. Decorating the tree. Christmas shopping. Presents. The other day I saw PeeWee’s Big Adventure on TV. And whenever I dress my children to go out in the cold, at least one of them is wearing something she made.

And can I confess something? Sometimes, if I walk by a window or mirror at the right speed and angle, I think it’s her for a split second before I realize it’s my goofy reflection.

I guess what I am saying is that memories and reminders can be random. And those days where you are expected to remember the ones you’ve lost are no different from any other day except you are reminded more often in the day. And while I am confessing things, I admit that I sometimes like days where I get to think about them more than usual.