I never imagined that something silly like Valentine's Day would be hard for a grieving mom. I never realized how much candy is out there on Valentine's Day! Giving Gavin his little present this morning (some spiderman chocolates and a new mini Green Goblin), it just felt so wrong that I didn't have a present for Ty. I didn't have anything but tears for poor Lou when he came home after dropping Gavin off at school, and then he showered me with surprises like the wonderful husband that he is. I was shocked that he had put so much thought into this silly holiday, and mad at myself because I hadn't even gotten him a card. I just didn't care about this day one teeny, tiny bit. Then he went and made it special anyway, and it made me feel a better. I think my slump is beginning to turn around and hopefully I'll be on the up and up over the next few days.
I made a lame attempt at making up for it by going to CVS with Gavin to get Lou a card. Gavin picked out Spiderman (of course), I bought one, and I decided I would make one from Ty that had a bunch of ladybug stickers. At the register I spotted the berry sour patch kids that Ty used to eat like crazy (I used to buy six large bags at a time because Ty would only eat the blue ones). I had to buy it. And a blue push pop. That's what Ty would have picked out if he was with me, so that is what Lou got for his Valentine's Day present. It's perfect, right? That and I cooked for a change. Well, I half cooked. I broiled up the steaks and whipped up a Bearnaise, but bought some pre-made sides. Hey, at least I made an effort and to be honest, it was off the hook delicious.
I wish I had new pictures of Ty making a Valentine, or Ty hugging Gavin, or (most of all) me holding my Ty. Instead I had to look back into my photos from last February. I found another one of him in his famous winter hat, one of the Valentine's Day cards that Ty made for his classmates at school with my help, and one of Gavin wearing the "Woody" cowboy hat that me and Ty made for him one day at the hospital.
|See the "T" on the top right? And his scribbles?|
When Ty was sick, I didn't get close to other cancer families. I didn't know many of the children personally and tried not to follow too many blog posts or caring bridge entries just because my heart could only take so much... but of course there are children that are in my heart forever no matter how hard I tried not to love them as a means to protect myself. Tanner, Grace, Mikey, Ronan, Henley, Brooke, James, Cole and so many more. All of them fighters. Many are gone now, like Ty, but many are still fighting and winning! The real reason why I was afraid to love these kids was because I had a tremendous guilt every time I sat down to pray for Ty. Pressure to pray for all of the kids with cancer, of course. But, in all truth, if there was only one miracle to be had... I begged for God to choose Ty. How could I not? I love all of these amazing, beautiful and courageous kids, but I love Ty more than any other love on the planet.
Now that Ty is gone, I find myself able to talk to so many cancer moms and others whose lives have been affected by cancer and it has helped me so much! Redirecting all of the time I spent caring for Ty, I am now joining the amazing fight on his behalf and it helps me cope. My greatest purpose in life was to take care of Ty and Gavin. Now that half of that is gone, I try to fill that time by throwing myself into the cause and it's so very good. Of course, it fills the time but nothing fills that void. That's just going to hurt always. It will always be there, even on my best days. It has been almost four months, and not a second goes by where I am not aware of what is missing. But that doesn't mean I can't smile, and for that I am grateful.
I pasted this quote to the blog last year, so I am going to post it again on this Valentine's Day because it is so beautiful. Tonight, I am off to bed feeling loved.