There is always that one picture that does me in. Every. Single. Summer. The one that I know is inevitably going to occur but I have forgotten over the year is going to be taken so it will always continue to catch me by surprise. It is the one that makes me smile for a split second before my brain registers what I am looking at and what is missing, well actually more like who. This is then followed by a dialogue that occurs silently within my mind about how nothing/no one is really missing and that it is just the (sad) reality of life. Yet, my internal negotiation doesn't change the fact that the damn picture has still managed to pierce my heart.
I HATE after 4 years on this journey that these types of moments still occur. More often than not I find myself in a state of numbness that only periodically allows this sort of real life pain awareness to seep inside. Call it whatever you want, it is one hell of an amazing protective device, and personally, I prefer the numbness over the stabbing pain my heart feels when one of these moments creeps in, so I am glad they are only occasional. What I dislike most is that it almost seems like my mind takes the picture completely out of context. Where I should be looking at my oldest daughter, her best summer friend, and her little sister, standing on scooters posing for an adorable picture, my mind does not see Sonzee standing next to (who should be) her summer best friend.
I HATE these types of reminders of how old Sonzee is. I HATE these types of reminders of what Sonzee is unable to do, of who she is unable to be, of how much of life she is missing out on. I HATE that this picture that I should be printing and placing in a frame for my oldest daughter because it is such a great picture, takes the breath out of me every time I look at it. I HATE that these types of reminders pop up randomly without notice and seem impossible to prevent. I HATE that not only was she missing from the picture, but she was sitting at home miserable, unable to be outside. I really do my best to not focus on what Sonzee isn't able to do, or doesn't do, or can't do, but sometimes life seems to get in the way.