Right now I am closed.
|A rainbow lands on Riley's art|
In February, I was open.
Riley’s 13th birthday appeared on the calendar. My brain cannot seem to reconcile that he is now two different ages at the same time.
My stepson turned 12. How can the boy who is exactly one year and two weeks younger than Riley be older than Riley?
Another mathematical milestone demanded that we recognize that 18 months have been endured without him.
My stepdaughter was in the ER and then having surgery at the same hospital where Riley exhaled for the last time. I even sat for a period of time in the same pre-op room where I last heard my Riley's voice. I love you too, mom, it said.
And so I am closed.
|Riley in Bubblegum Alley|
The leaves fall, they grow back and shade the patio, they fall and grow back again. They don’t know how to live another way. I don’t know how to live this way. And so I curl into myself, I crumple, and fall to the ground.
One day I imagine I will open again. I will be in the company of my safe people. In the meantime, I will talk to the light tapping my finger. I will concentrate on giving that light a feeling so that it will be like his hand holding mine, feeling his boy skin on my skin. And then it vanishes. The patch of light leaves me all alone with my broken heart, contracting and emptying.