I heard Elmo say your name today. For the first time in over a year I heard, "Elmo here...who's calling please? Oh, it's you...Connor! Hahahahahaha!!!! Elmo is so happy to hear from you." Oh. Ouch. Play it again. And again. And again.
You see, this is linked to the little Elmo "cell" phone Aunt Dru gave you for your 1st birthday. A birthday that is creeping up in...3 days. We programmed the phone with YOUR name so Elmo would say Connor-specific messages. And you loved, loved, loved it. As I stare at the little phone now - for the first time since we packed it away - I see spots already worn away by your hands, your teeth, your fingers pressing certain, special buttons time after time after time.
Momma and Dadda brought a bunch of your toys out this weekend. Toys meant for a spunky 1-2 year-old boy. Toys that have sat dormant, waiting. While the rest have been touched by the joy of your brother, this is one toy The Pickle will not play with or change. This toy is now with Momma, next to her pillow.
Peanut, I can't believe your birthday is right around the corner. I want to believe you are still here. I want to believe we are planning a party for you with cake and hats and banners and gifts. But. We aren't.
What we are doing is celebrating the life you blessed us with on this earth. Trying not to dwell too much on what we lost. What we will never know. The boy you should have been. The life you deserved to live.
Instead, we will honor your joyful smile, brilliant blue eyes, musical laugh. I still see and feel you in my heart, in my soul.
I miss you so much. I love you. To the moon - and back!