Dear Ryan, Eleven Months


Dear Ryan,

Hi my little guy! I miss you so much. I'm having a hard time believing that it has been eleven months since I last held you, touched you, heard your voice. I know you can see me everyday, I wish I could see you everyday. As I sit here thinking about what to say to you a million things come to mind. I want to show you around our new home and tell you that even though you don't see your room put together just as you left it, we have all your special things tucked away safe. I need you to know that. Sometimes when I think of you visiting me I get sad because things look so different. Mommy and Daddy miss seeing your toys strewn across the living room floor, but we had to put them away because it hurts to look at them. We miss watching Disney movies with you and hearing you repeat each line and sing every song. Do they have your favorite movies in Heaven? I know people tell me that you are having the best time up there, but are you really? I believe you are . . . but you don't have me up there with you to do all our favorite things. Sometimes I worry that God or whatever angel friends you have up there with you don't know how to cut your sandwiches into hearts or dinosaurs. Sometimes I worry that they don't know which PJ's are your favorite or which smoothie flavors you love best. Do they have hip hop music in Heaven? Are you dancing up there like we used when Mommy cleaned the house and you trailed behind me playing Cars or Monsters Inc? I have so many questions that I know I just have to answer myself and believe them all to be true and glorious. Just as Heaven is promised right?

I guess when I have questions I can look to the beautiful signs you send. All day I walk around with an open heart and mind craving signs and little love notes left out from you. I can tell you are working hard to let it be known you love your Mommy and Daddy. Ryan you are strong and I am so proud of you. You have to know that even though I don't see you anymore I still am so proud of you. It kills me to not be able to play with you or see you continue to learn at school and play with friends, but I still replay scenes from the past in my head and beam with pride.

Do remember all the adventures we had? We had a lot of big ones like camping when you were just one and we let you crawl around barefoot. Or when we took you to the beach all those times, and how you just recently stopped eating the sand? Thinking of that makes me giggle. I spent a lot days at the beach trying to keep you from eating the sand. I miss your happy face and bright eyes when running into the waves. I miss your wiggling body as I tried to put sunscreen on every inch of your sweet soft skin. I hope you still go to Disneyland Ryan. I'm not sure how that works, but when I go with out you I imagine you with me. I just hope you still go, because that was our most favorite place. Did you see they have a new Frozen area? I'm sure you love it. I wish so badly I could have taken you myself and seen your face light up as you sang "Suuuuummmer!" Promise me that you still go with and with out me.

We had a lot of little daily adventures too. I miss you the most when I go grocery shopping at Trader Joe's. I've been taking you there since you were just weeks old. I still buy your favorite fruit leathers and I always, always ask for stickers when I check out. I have a whole jar full of stickers at this point. When you visit our house do you see them? They are for you. Sometimes when I ask the checker for stickers I feel insane, but when I put them in the jar I imagine you smiling and saying "Fank You Mom!" I miss picking you up from school and taking you to the park or for ice cream cones. I'm sorry for not taking you the park more, I feel like sometimes when you asked we had to hurry home and make dinner or whatever it was. I remember you always asking to go the park. I'm sorry if we didn't go enough. I hope I made up for it with our crafts, cooking together or other random things I thought of to do with you. Our adventures big and little are so special and I try to continue living them with you watching from above. This life though, it is fiercely difficult with out you.

You must see such beautiful things up there Ry. You must visit so many. I hope you help and spread happiness to anyone and everyone in need. I pray you continue to help Mommy and Daddy just as you have been. Our smiles are for you and you give us such strength to go on. When you see us know that we miss you more than any words or actions can convey. It hurts so bad, we crave you always. Mommy and Daddy will never stop loving you, we will never stop missing you either.

How has it been eleven months? You'd think that it would get easier as the months press on, but as one year hides behind the next corner I'm filled with more anxiety and pain than ever. I feel as though I am losing you all over again. What is in store for Mommy and Daddy as we approach one year with out you? When I feel anxious and full of unanswerable questions I sit and close my eyes. I let whatever tears I have in me flow freely and I deeply imagine your tiny arms around my body with your head full of bouncy red curls resting on my chest. I take a deep breath in and I can still smell your shampoo with a hint of sweet sweat. You were always so sweaty Ryan. I think of you hugging me and me hugging you and I'm able to relax. I'm able to have hope for the future. While I hug you I feel grateful for being your momma, I feel grateful for being able to share so many wonderful memories while I physically had you. I feel immense love for you and for life. I feel calm.

I don't want this letter to end, as I wish I could talk to you forever.

I will write you another soon.

I promise to continue to try hard at this life with out you.

I love you Ryan Cruz. Mommy loves you.

. . . do you remember this day Ryan? It was on of our "nature walks". We use to go on these nature walks and I would ask you what you see, hear, smell. I wish I had recorded our conversations while on these walks. Sometimes we would pick up rocks or leaves and smell them, throw them. I feel angry because I can't remember all the things we said or discussed. I hope you do. I hope when I see you again you can remind me. Thank God I have these photos to hold on to until then.