One month on
23 July 12
One month after Elijah’s death, my loss is still raw, with tears never more than a blink away. The trigger can be a display of baby products in the store, a glimpse of his clothing, blue nappies on sale, a small boy in someone’s arms or a stranger who innocently comments, “All girls — do you have any boys at home?”
Before I was intimately acquainted with death, I imagined that I would dispose of my loved one’s body in the most efficient way possible. I thought cremation would be the way to go, but now I am consoled by visiting the site of Elijah’s grave. Although I know that his spirit has flown, having a physical place of remembrance — apart from the red Logan River footbridge — provides me with an outlet at which I can weep freely.
What is actually buried in the ground is my energy. Elijah was the product of my energy as first I grew him inside me and then sustained his life outside the womb. He received a small amount of extra energy with the tiny bit of food he tasted, and he thrived on love received from other family members and friends, but mostly Elijah’s life came directly from me.
My energy will now slowly change into a new substance that will eventually provide food for grass which will create oxygen for future generations to breathe in. And so, the cycle of life continues, and one day a little boy will take breath of fresh air that is the metamorphosis of my energy via Elijah.
Just not my little boy — someone else’s. And that thought makes me weep and yet be thankful that I will be contributing to someone else’s life in this way.
One month on, I wonder if I will ever be able to move past the 23rd of the month without noting it as the awful anniversary of our great loss.
One month on, I am still not used to our smaller family size.
One month on, I suspect that I will be grieving for the rest of my life.
But I’ve survived one month. Surely I can get through the next one too.