A year ago my life changed. One could say that it was turned on its head, for surely there is no more succinct description for the catastrophic events that led to me being the father of a dead baby boy.
It's hard to talk about the loss of my son, Gabriel, to those who haven't lost a child. People who have no frame of reference have nothing to say. It's not that they don't want to, perhaps, but instead that they don't have the vocabulary to understand. Most people don't know what to say, and say nothing. They don't know what all parents of dead babies know - there are no words to express the feeling of loss, of confusion, of aimlessness that accompany the wretched loss of my son.
The sorrow sneaks up on me at odd times, in odd ways. I have yet to return to what my normal level was a year ago. It is shockingly difficult to be who I was before. I get distracted more easily. I am unable to concentrate as well. My motivation waxes and wanes on an unpredictable schedule.
A year ago I held my son in my hands. His tiny body was incredibly frail. With his death, that frailty has passed on to me in unexpected, unwanted ways. His death fractured me widely and deeply. Unlike a window, my cracks are not visible. To those who don't know of the impact, I appear to be normal and fully functioning. This makes for a disconnect between who I am, and who people expect me to be.
To my son in heaven: I miss you to the depth of my soul.