“Mommy….If Nate and Sam were still alive, you wouldn’t have had me, would you?”
A heartbreaking question from my little boy. Realistically, would I have had my rainbows if my sons had survived? Probably not. Maybe one of them, but definitely not both of them. I mean, you’d think the experience of having twin, toddler boys around would be enough to scare any mother off from having four kids.
So if I were to answer the question truthfully, had Nate and Sam had lived, my son Alexander wouldn’t be here.
But I can’t answer truthfully. While I’ve spent hours imagining what my life would be like if they had lived, each of those imaginings also involve my rainbows. I never imagine a world without them in it.
Every decision we make in life, as well as those decisions that are made for us, shape us. The reality is, had my sons lived, EVERYTHING would be different. And not all of those changes would be for the better. Who knows what decisions I would have made had I not lost my sons. Would I be as understanding of people experiencing grief and sorrow, if I hadn’t experienced them myself? Would I have found a renewed purpose in my career, had the loss of my sons not given me the impetus to move forward and make changes to how women receive care in infant and pregnancy loss? I certainly would never have found the courage to write a book – a book! – and see it through the publishing process from start to finish, if I had not have lost my sons.
I could go on and on… even little details, from the tattoo on my ankle to the statues of twins I have on my office desk, are shaped by that fateful day 10 years ago when my sons died.
So, Alexander, if Nate and Sam were still alive, I probably would have had you.
But, YOU would be a completely different person, because you would have grown up with two older brothers who loved you very much, but probably would also have driven you a little crazy. It is fun to imagine how things would be different if they were still with us, but I also know I love you with all my heart. And I love the YOU you are today.