Tuesday, June 30, 2015


Every once in a while, I would have a dream in which Connor achieved something we thought wasn't possible.  Once, about 6 years ago, it was a dream in which he stood up, ran about 10 feet, and then realized he couldn't do it and collapsed.  The expression of joy on his usually emotionless face was a sight to behold, even if it was the product of my subconscious.

Last night, I dreamt that we were getting set up for a large-scale party with the whole family around.  In the middle of the preparations, Connor was sitting in his chair, waiting to be fed, and with a group of people around, he spoke his first words.  He murmured, "Yesterday..." and we all hollered, "YESTERDAY!!" because we were so shocked that his vocalizations made a real word!  Then he said, "Tucker got in trouble." The words were slurry and difficult to pick out, unless you knew how Connor vocalized.

Next,  I went in search of my mother in the dream, as she wasn't there and she was the first person I wanted to tell this story to.  I woke up just as I was telling her in the dream.  I said, Mom, he said his first words! And we both burst into noisy, happy tears, and then I woke up with a 6 year old pressing against my side and a dog draped over my legs.

I wonder when the next dream will be, and if he will continue speaking in them.  His sentence was hilariously on topic - I'm sure that Tucker was in trouble yesterday.  Every yesterday.

In any case, it was a good dream.

Sunday, June 07, 2015


This morning, while Lee was out on his bike, I laid in bed avoiding adulting, and then I heard something. It sounded just like Connor did when he's vocalize out to us from his bedroom, sort of a "I'm up...please come get me!" indication. It's the same sound my imagination created in my head the night after he died, before I wrote the first posthumous entry here. I miss that sound, but it always makes me happy to hear it, even though it's imaginary. 

Then again, it could have been Tucker. He has been a pretty good mimic for Connor's vocalizations. But I'm pretty certain it was my mind. He was too engrossed in Turbo. 

Sundays have become the days I seem to encounter the most sadness. I wonder if it's because it's a quiet morning, which allows my mind to work overtime and entertain scenarios and memories that busy days tamp down. Maybe it's because Sunday is forever linked to faith days for me, and this experience has been the most important test, and testament, of my faith. 

Who really knows anyway? But this morning I heard his voice again. A hymn to this day. That sound used to drive me from whatever I was doing to him. Now he's always with me, so I have to listen carefully to be able to hear him. 

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

A new week...a new perspective

So my last post got people worried, I guess. I apologize.  I never intended that. Much like my old life, my new life throws curve balls, and sometimes they come faster and closer than I can process.

Last Friday, Connor's last school held a dedication ceremony for a tree planted for him.  My dear friend Joe donated the tree and had it planted, a Little Gem Southern Dwarf Magnolia tree.  The morning of the ceremony, the first bud opened on the tree.

His teacher, Liz, met us at the door and walked us over to the courtyard. The day was overcast, but as we stepped out, the clouds broke apart and the sun shone brightly on those gathered. The principal, Dan.  Two of his former teachers, Bianca and Rachael.  A few of his therapists. Parents and current students from the FLS class, many of whom he shared class with for 5 years.  A group of 5th graders - his technical classmates based on age. Liz stood on the small stage and read a lovely piece, talking about the team putting him on the bus the last day he went to school at the end of the day, and him looking back at each of his teachers, aides, therapists.  No one knew at the time that it was his good-bye to them. I hadn't known that he'd done that until that moment. Then she introduced the 5th graders, and referred to them as the chorus, and they stood up and sang a beautiful version of "Times Like These" by Foo Fighters.  The chorus included one of his classmates from Ashlawn, his first school. Two of his Barrett & Glebe (and Tuckahoe, come to think of it!) classmates, took rhythmic gymnastics ribbons and danced. We bawled.  BAWLED. We hadn't know what to expect, but it certainly wasn't that. Tissues were passed to us.

After they were done, Lee and I each thanked everyone, and then added a small amount of dirt from his garden at home to the roots of the tree, so he could truly be a part of the growth.

Today, I dropped the other boys at school and thought back to that event, and what struck me was that people who were there participated because they love him. Currently, actively. One of the nicest things I consider now is that despite his absence, the love we feel isn't in the past, and that is an awesome thing. We LOVE him, and it will never be that we LOVED him. It's in this moment, every moment, and like the sun coming out on his ceremony, that brightens my day.