Today closed out 87 weeks of your absence. This last week we finished the last days of Sukkot and your siblings finished their fall break. Ema's started today (wahoo!), but more on that next week. We spent our first full holiday at a different shul in a different community. To say we have been having a wonderful time here would be an understatement. It brings me such joy to have your siblings' friends walk over to either play at the house or pick up the one they came for. To add to that, ema is also thoroughly enjoying being within walking distance of her closest friends. It has been most challenging for aba, but he is not the biggest fan of any type of change.
We celebrated our first Simchas Torah without you. That was a bit tough, at least for aba and me. Some of your siblings reflected on your absence. I remember when aba was afraid to take you to the party the first time. He said you would not like it. I asked him how he could know if he did not try, and he humored me and took you with your siblings. The main difference between anyone humoring me when it came to you, was that it always resulted in my being right. (I will give myself that shameless brag). It makes me smile ear to ear to think about you in your wheelchair with your father pushing you around during hakafot dancing with everyone. There was even a year a friend of Meena's broke your wheelchair sitting on it with you. Small price to pay for us to make sure you were not slighted any experiences. You LOVED this holiday. You LOVED to be out there with everyone. You LOVED the attention. Last year, because of corona aba and I were relieved to not have to experience our first Simchas Torah without you because it did not happen in the same way it had while you were alive. This year...for me, I was able to avoid the first night because only aba went back to our usual stomping grounds. It was not easy for him. For me, the change made the blow softer. I teared up myself on the second night watching when aba put Meena and Noam on his shoulders, and when I watched him walk around empty-handed, no wheelchair within his grip.
Being in this new environment has led us to new experiences. I am sure that was your intention in whatever hand you played in flooding out the only home you ever knew. It is an amazing opportunity for us to give your siblings, for them to be near their school friends, and within walking distance of their school. It is a step in moving forward for sure, but there are times when I feel like I am a heavy weight stuck mid-step. Like when people who do not know us because even though we have lived in Phoenix for 13 years, we have not lived here, where we are, for 13 years, and I have to answer basic "how many children do you have?" questions. There are conversations that occur in passing about our 13 years here in Phoenix, I will admit with an apology, I sometimes leave you out of the story. There have been times where I have met some amazing new to me people and I talk about you non-stop and let them know about "Sonya's Story" and how my blogging began because of you. I am still finding my way through this mirky grief water that is for certain, and another week under my belt has not changed that.
Anyway, baby girl. I miss you, love you, and hope you are having fun, playing hard, and staying safe.
Until next time.