It’s nearly 1am.
And I can’t stop thinking of you.
Willow still refers to you as Absen. If you ask her how many siblings she has, without hesitation, she says 2 sisters and a brother.
I wonder if she’ll always remember you.
Reid still does.
I didn’t know it until recently.
He’s in speech therapy.
So he’s not good at communicating.
But he says “one willow two babies” frequently.
I know he knows you.
Tonight I got your siblings to bed.
I was laying there watching Netflix.
With your stepdad I guess.
He met you a handful of times.
But I was still too timid to let you guys know him when you died.
I hate saying that.
When you died.
I don’t think I’ve processed it completely.
But as we were laying there the pain of you swept over me.
Like a hurricane.
You’re never coming home.
I know it’s wrong.
But I still go through the days like you’ll come home.
Like if I can prove your death was preventable.
If I can get better.
If I’m more mentally healthy.
You’ll come home.
But you won’t.
Because you, my sweet child, are dead.
I’m not saying it for anyone else.
I’m saying it for me.
Because you died 9.5 months ago.
And I still haven’t accepted it.
I keep thinking I can bring you back.
Obviously the logical side of me knows I can’t.
But the mom side of me thinks I can.
It’s so irrational.
But I can’t stop.
I tried so hard kiddo.
To save you.
To protect you.
More than anyone truly knows.
The day you left you were gone 22 hours before you died. It was supposed to be 72 hours.
I said you had an appointment.
That you couldn’t go that long.
I got it lowered 42 hours.
To just 30.
On April 14th I laid next to you.
I kissed you over and over.
It just didn’t feel right.
But I told myself over and over it was just my anxiety.
No one would hurt you.
You were pure.
It wasn’t anxiety.
56 minutes before you left I posted a picture of you.
With the caption along the lines of:
Baby I promise we’ll be okay.
The phone call I got.
I’ll never forget those words.
They’ll haunt me forever.
“How did you know I called”
My baby was dead.
And no one was going to tell me.
Because everyone knew.
They knew I’d dig and dig for answers.
Speeding down that road.
All the lights red.
Blaring my horn.
On the phone.
After I hung up on Mimi and grumps I called him.
I didn’t know.
Maybe they brought you back.
Maybe you’d be severely handicap.
But it’s okay.
We can deal with that.
Please come to the ER. Fort Walton. It’s aspen.
That’s all I could get out.
My bare feet slapping the pavement over and over through the ER parking lot.
Because maybe if my feet carried me fast enough I could tell you goodbye while you were still alive.
The tears in that room.
The clothes I dressed you in the day before sliced off you and laying under your pale body.
Is she gone?
Stop hurting my baby.
Stop touching her.
Your eyes were open.
But they weren’t.
Your body was cold but I still sat holding you against me.
Maybe my mom instinct kicked it.
But I sat there trying to warm you against me.
Begging you to wake up.
My tears streamed down your cold face.
And a nurse hugged me as I held you.
I’ll never forget it.
It was probably hard for the nurses to watch me.
Completely irrational screaming for you to wake up.
And then I laid you down.
I walked to a room.
Your, now, stepdad walked in. (He was never your stepdad but I absolutely hate saying he’s your siblings stepdad but not yours)
And I never told him until now.
Because I didn’t want him to feel obligated to stay.
But peace swept over me.
It’s not okay.
It never will be.
But he’s going to carry us through this.
He stayed when I shutdown.
When I cried myself to sleep for weeks.
When I dropped to my knees as I hung up with the investigator.
Having a child die is horrid.
But I can’t convey the picture I have of you.
For hours laying alone.
No one helped you.
No one called 911.
Because the only people who actually cared about you were right down the road.
Waiting for you to come home.
At the end of the day you’re dead because of pride.
You’re dead because while I said over and over I’d keep you.
Just let us be.
Pride got in the way.
And now you’re dead.
Over a bottle of alcohol.
And that kills me every day.
So as I sit on this couch.
Because a man who loves us dearly agreed to give me a little bit of time to myself tonight I want you to know I love you.
My sweet girl.
More than I love anything, I love you.
It’s hard parenting your siblings.
Your death gave me some ptsd.
I’m scared they’ll go too.
But my every breath fears that.
But I’m going to write something my husband recently said to me;
“Let it out. It’s okay to feel this way”
He said those words as 9.5 months later I pressed my face into his chest and hysterically sobbed.
Because maybe if I pressed against him hard enough he could absorb some of it.
Because this pain is too much.
It came out of no where.
You just crossed my mind.
So this is me letting it out the best I know how.
Typos and sloppiness.
I just want you home kiddo.
I miss you little bug.
Those sweet giggles.
Your crazy eye.
Your stinky little feet.
I wish it had been me.
Everyday I wish it had been me instead.
I am so sorry.
Everyday I struggle with accepting that I couldn’t have saved you.
Regardless of how much interference I tried to run.
It was His plan.
And while I’ve spent a lot of time angry with the one who now holds you for me.
It was always out of my hands because it was in his.
And I’m learning to accept that.
I love you, Aspen Jayne.
Until we meet again someday soon.