"A Butterfly lies beside us
like a sunbeam
and for a brief moment,
it's beauty and glory
belong to our world.
But then it flies on again.
And though we wish it could have stayed
we feel so lucky to have seen it"
-- Author unknown
That is one of my all-time favorite quotes. It so perfectly says what we feel about Olivia.
As of yesterday, it has been one full year since the last time Olivia was with us here, alive. One full year since we held her in our arms and kissed her soft little cheeks. I was sad on her birthday because I knew that if she were here we would be celebrating, but there was a much different feeling surrounding yesterday. The sadness kind of came and went at different periods throughout the day, but right now, I feel like I'm pretty much just in disbelief. I literally can't believe that a year has passed already.
Last year, Olivia's funeral was on the day after Thanksgiving. Needless to say, Thanksgiving wasn't a very happy occasion for us, even though we acted like it was. Which was weird. Looking back, I don't know why we put up such a tough front during those days in between leaving the hospital and her memorial service. We had some friends fly in on Wednesday night for the funeral, so we spent Thanksgiving with them at Kurt's parents' house, and then went to my aunts in Iowa. At the second dinner, I had to excuse myself several times to go sit on the front porch and cry. I barely ate ANY food, and just kept thinking about how much I still needed to get done for the next morning, and how much I wanted to go home.
S0 this year, we are looking forward to a very, VERY happy thanksgiving. We're doing the same thing as last year, early dinner with Kurt's side of the family and then off to Iowa for mine. But instead of feeling like complete crap because we have our daughter's funeral to get to the next morning, we will be preparing to head to Lincoln EARLY on Friday for the Nebraska/Colorado game. We bought the tickets because we thought it would be something fun to do right after our wedding since we can't go on a honeymoon until the spring... but it is so fitting that it ended up being on the "anniversary" of her funeral. I really like that we'll be celebrating this year instead of mourning.
I remember how I felt at this time last year. We had just come home from the hospital, and I was laying on the couch with packs of ice, in complete disbelief that this was really happening. I remember thinking forward, and wondering how my life/our lives would ever be normal again. The pain was so intense and raw - both emotionally and physically - that I couldn't imagine ever feeling better. It's amazing how much time changes things.
But that saying - "time heals all wounds" - is partly BS. We both definitely feel better, there's no doubt about that. But this is one "wound" that I know will never completely heal. There's no such thing as getting over the death of a child. At least I don't think there is.
We miss and love you VERY much Olivia. More than words can ever express.