Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Friday, February 24, 2012
Tuesday, February 21, 2012
It’s been exactly a year since you and your mommy moved away. It’s been a year since I last cuddled you. It’s been a year since the last time you sat in my lap, and we watched some episodes of Dora. I don’t think you knew what was going on that night. I don’t think you really understood that you and mommy were leaving. But I think you did know that something was different. You were still happy and smiley because that’s just who you are, but there was something else too. You seemed a little confused, like you were trying to figure out just what was going on.
I went back upstairs to where I lived, so you and TT could eat dinner, and I asked your mommy to come get me before you guys left so I could say bye to you, one last goodbye because who knows when the next time I’ll ever see you again will be. She almost forgot, but she remembered right at the last minute. You were in the car already, buckled into your car seat, with your winter jacket on. It was all I could do, Candis, to not cry in front of you. I didn’t want to cry in front of you. I wanted you think everything was still normal, that it was just another car ride, because I’m selfish and I knew it would break my heart in two if I saw you crying. I didn’t know when the next time I saw you or talked to you would be, and that just broke my heart so badly. Seeing you cry would just make it worse. I said goodbye to you. I gave you kisses. I told you I was going to miss you. Reluctantly, I pulled away so your aunt could say bye to you. I tried to smile, and waved goodbye. I waved as I watch you guys leave and, tears filling my eyes, I waved as I watched the car pull out of the driveway and down the street. With the tears blurring my vision and threatening to fall at any second, I watched the car’s taillights until they turned the corner and disappeared. I turned and ran up the stairs, trying so hard not to let the tears start while I was still outside in the cold end-of-February air. Once inside, I shut the door and just collapsed against it. I stopped trying to stop the tears, and let them fall freely. I wasn’t just crying, Candis, I was sobbing. I felt like the tears were never going to stop falling, and I just wanted to hug you again. For just about two years, you had been practically my baby. And then, just like that, you were gone. I cried until I thought I had no tears left, and then cried some more.
That was a year ago. And I still miss you. I don’t cry anymore, not about that. But I still miss you. I still feel sad sometimes, mostly around the 21st of each month because that’s when you guys left. And now, it’s been a year. It’s been one full year. And so much has happened in that year. I don’t want to talk about it on here, in a blog that anyone could be reading, but there were some things that happened in your life that I wish I could change. If I could change the past, I wouldn’t have let those things happen to you. Not any of them.
There’s a song. It’s called “Wonderful” and it’s by a band named Everclear. The first time I heard it was on an old NOW cd. One of the lyrics is “Promises mean everything / when you’re little and the world is so big / I just don’t understand how / you can smile with all those tears in your eyes / and tell me everything is wonderful now.” That line makes me think of you. Because I promised you things would be ok. I promised brother that everything would be ok for you. And it was a promise I couldn’t keep. It was a promise I shouldn’t have made. Do you understand, Candis? I was smiling for you. I was smiling so you would think things were still ok, that things would always be ok. Because I wanted everything to be ok for you. There’s another line in the song that says “I don’t believe you when you say / everything will be wonderful someday.” Please believe me. Everything will be wonderful someday. As much as I want to promise that, I can’t make it a promise. But I can hope. I can wish. And I can tell you. Everything will be wonderful someday. Maybe it’s wonderful now.
You’ve grown up so much in this past year, baby girl. You and your brother look so much a like, do you know that? You’re gonna be so beautiful when you’re older. But please, please, please don’t let beauty be your defining factor. Girls are so much more than just “beautiful.” Be smart. Be a good person. Be a good friend. Always do your best. You know? Please. Too many girls think that all they are is pretty or beautiful, but looks aren’t everything. Be a beautiful person on the inside too. That’s what I’m asking you to keep in mind as you grow up. Know that no matter what anyone says, you are perfect. Don’t let anyone knock you down. Don’t let anyone but you determine your worth. I know you’re only (almost) three right now, and this advice probably doesn’t make much sense right now, it will someday. It will when you’re older. I promise.
There’s another song. “Never Grow Up” by Taylor Swift. I don’t think you’ve ever heard it, but it really gets to me every time I hear it. It reminds me so much of you and brother and TT. It’s an incredibly beautiful song. A line in the beginning says “to you, everything’s funny / you’ve got nothing to regret.” It reminds me of when – do you remember this, Candis? – it reminds me of when I was sitting on the stairs, keeping an eye on you three kids, and you came over and sat down next to me, and just looked up. You were staring at something in the tree, I think. Was it the leaves? Was there a bird? Or were you looking at the clouds in the sky? I asked you, “what’re you looking at, silly?” and you just starting laughing. You stopped for a minute, looked at me, and smiled like you had a secret. What was so funny, silly girl? What were you thinking about? Everything could make you laugh. Part of the chorus of the song says “I won’t let nobody hurt you / won’t let no one break your heart / and no one will desert you / just try to never grow up.” And for a long time, I thought she was saying to stay a baby forever, but I think now that she was saying to not rush growing up. Be a kid for as long as you possibly can. Don’t be in a rush to grow up. And no matter what happens in life, don’t lose your childish innocence.
Candis, I have a bit of really important advice for you to keep in mind when you’re growing up. Be you. Always. Always, always, always just be you. Ok? I know in middle school, everyone tries to be the same to fit in. Heck, it’s not just middle school, it’s everywhere in life. But don’t ever be afraid to be who you are, whoever that may be. I know you’re still a little kid, so you are being you. You and brother and TT, all three of you, you’re always 100% yourselves all the time. Don’t lose that as you grow up. Please.
I know this is silly, but can you say “Kimberly” yet? You used to call me Kimee. Then Kimkey. And then Kimeree. About a year ago, on your 2nd birthday, you got pretty close, with “Kimerly.” Can you say “love” now? You said “luh” for the longest time. I never wanted the days of “Kimerly” or “luh” or “tank” (instead of “thank”) to ever end. I remember saying that I would never get tired of hearing “luh” because it was so dang adorable.
Speaking of adorable, do you remember when I said to you, “you’re too cute for your own good” and you smiled and said back to me, “I know.” Or when you were going with TT and grammy to McDonalds, and you didn’t want to go and TT said to me, “Canis loves you more than McDonalds.” It was “Canis” because she couldn’t get the “d” when she said it yet. She can now though. I still have the Dora and Tinkerbell stickers on my laptop that you and TT put there. You guys “decorated” it for me. I had to tape them down because they kept coming off, but I still have them. Do you still like the Surprised Kitty video on youtube? You used to sit on my lap and we would watch it on youtube, and every time it ended, you would look at me and say “one more!” It still makes me smile to watch it.
I miss you. I always will. And I love you. I always will.