Sunday, August 12, 2012

Olympics and Sand Dollars

Peanut -

The 2012 Summer Olympics ended this evening.  After two weeks of sports, celebrations, world records and mindless banter on NBC we bid "farewell" tonight to the summer games for another four years.  Four years.  It seems like such a small window of time.  But, to our family it is more than a lifetime.

You never got to see or experience the summer Olympics.  Happily, we did get to enjoy the 2010 winter games with you, but there is something different and special about the summer events.  Maybe it's because Momma remembers watching those summer games during childhood summer vacations, and thought we would do the same with you.  Maybe it's because Momma was a swimmer and always pictured you following in her footsteps and cheering on the USA swimmers with passion.

Watching the closing ceremonies was bittersweet.  Pickle dozed on my lap, half watching the bright lights and fanfare.  Back to school ads popped in and out during the commercial breaks, reminding Momma that, once again, we face a new school year that won't include you.  And all I could think was, "Gosh, Peanut would have loved this."  At close to three years old, these events would have been exciting, captivating, thrilling for you.

In the midst of this looming sadness, Momma is trying to focus on the joy you brought to our lives.  The blessing of your little brother.  As I write this, I am gazing at a bright white sand dollar I received on Thursday.  Dadda and I drove for two hours to pick up your older brothers and sister from Camp Erin, a grief camp for teenagers sponsored by Annie's Hope (based in St. Louis).  The camp always closes with a lunch, awards and a ceremony filled with meaning for the campers and their families...we are all linked at the heart by our shared grief.  It is powerful, touching, special.

This year we all received sand dollars and were told a story about the magic and symbolism of their design.  Many people of faith know about the "legend of the sand dollar" but what we heard on Thursday was not anchored in one religion.  It was anchored in faith, hope and love.  In grief.  In the power of sharing and community.  As the ceremony ended, we were all asked to focus silently on our one wish for everyone else in the room.

I know what my wish is...

Peanut, I miss you so very much.  I love, love, love you.  How much?  To the moon - and back!

- Momma

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