Revisiting The Past
What feels like a long time ago, I wrote about my nephews. (You may want to go back and read that post if you missed it, it sets the stage for today’s thoughts).
Part of me has always hated that I shared these thoughts. A large part of me in fact.
On some levels I have felt shameful for having had these feelings towards my youngest nephew. As I said then, and I will say again, the fact that we found out about his existence the same night we found out our third baby would die and he was born a few weeks after our fourth pregnancy began (and ultimately lost) is in no way his fault. The fact that his first year of life was a reminder of what we didn’t have, again is in no way his fault. Yet, I struggled to separate him from our losses. The timing, it was just too much of a reminder.
I hated knowing that one day my brother, his wife, or either of their children could read this. I love them so very much, the last thing I would ever want to do is hurt them.
In fact, I’ve hated this post so much that on more then one occasion I’ve talked to Mr. MPB about deleting it. Every time I bring it up, he says something like don’t do it. People read your blog because you are honest with these hard emotions. You don’t typically censor, so don’t start now. People relate to this stuff, and it matters. So, as the post is still there, I clearly have listened to him.
So, here’s the thing and the reason I am bringing this up again now. Our lives have drastically changed since I wrote that post – we’ve had more losses and we’ve moved to adoption. And, our nephews have obviously grown since I wrote this post was written over a year ago. The oldest one is now well into his 5th year of life. And the young one, the one that I so desperately struggled to be around, is now about 18 months old.
When he was an infant we didn’t visit as much as we should have, out of necessity to protect ourselves. But, with time, we started to show our faces a bit more. We started to force ourselves to spend time with the entire family a bit more.
We started to see him as an individual, with his own cute little quarks and mannerisms. These unique little things about him, turned my view of him upside down. I started to see him for him, not him as a representation of what we didn’t have.
With time, I started to look forward to visits with them. The fear that I’d break down in tears started to lesson. The worry that I wouldn’t treat him fairly has vanished. The hurt over our losses will never go away, but he no longer is a reminder of them.
Instead, today, I see a family who has weathered their own storm of losing one twin and today has so much love and happiness. Today, I look at that little boy and I see a world of happiness and smiles. I see a little man exploring the world for the first time. I see an older brother learning to share with his younger brother. I see love.
Yes, there are moments when I look at the little guy and I silently remember what could have been and what isn’t. But, that’s no longer my focus. The moments are fleeting, and I suspect I may have those moments from time to time for the rest of my life. But, I must say, I am beyond thankful that I’m no longer worried about holding myself together around him and inadvertently favouring his brother over him. Instead, I am thankful that today, I am at a place where I just enjoy time with both boys and always look forward to our next visit and their wonderful hugs.
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