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On My Son’s 2nd Birthday in Heaven

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It’s been two years since Wyatt was born and left this earth. I don’t sleep with his teddy bear or cry every night anymore, but the pain hasn’t gone away. Instead of a constant ache, it comes in waves now. When I think of what he would be doing now, or the holidays he’s missed and is going to miss, a wave of grief comes. When I see a little boy with Down syndrome who’s around the same age he would have been, I try to picture what he may have looked like. Reminders are all around, but I don’t need them anyway; I think about him every day.

I think a lot about what he is like now, in heaven. Will I get to see him grow up, or will I have missed it? I wonder if he’s aging like he would be on earth, if it’s faster, or if he’s frozen in time. Is he still the same tiny baby I got to hold for such a short time? I wonder if he has Down syndrome in heaven. I know it’s thought of as a disability, but it’s part of who he is, and I think it makes him perfect. His big brother is convinced he gets to eat candy for breakfast every morning and not brush his teeth; I hope that’s true. He still prays for him to come back to life. Two years later, and that’s still his prayer every night. That’s how much Wyatt is loved. That’s how much you can love someone you never even met.

He was only here for a short while, but he is missed the same as if he were here for a lifetime. I remember praying and hoping the day he was born that the doctors were wrong, that he would have a heartbeat after all and would be able to be saved. I know he was born too early for that, and I knew it then too, but hope was a necessity at that time. I found hope in a lot of different places. The Bible, praying, encouraging messages, stories of parents who had gone through the same thing, and when we found out we were pregnant with Hannah.

For about a year after he died though, a lot of hope came from a song. I listened to, “See” by Steven Curtis Chapman on repeat. It gave me such comfort and hope, and I still think about these words often:

But from the other side of all this pain
Is that you I hear
And calling out to me?
Saying “See, it’s everything you said that it would be
And even better than you would believe.
And I’m counting down the days until you’re here with me
And finally you’ll see”

Happy birthday, Wyatt James. I can’t wait to see you.

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Originally published: March 11, 2018
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