I had a dream about her last night. But it wasn’t like the others. It was a party, everyone was there. Some of you, faces I only really know through Facebook, family and friends.
But it was different because in this one, she was dead.
I knew she was gone. Everyone else knew she was gone. Even She knew she was gone. But somehow she was there in my arms perched on my hip where she fit so perfectly. Not one minute older, my girl was tangible. She was there. She was perfect.
In the last moment I remember before reality ripped me from a dream I could have lived in for the rest of time, I held her close to me and said,
“I wish we had more than this.”
She smiled back, put her little hand on my face, just like she use to do when she wanted my undivided attention, and said,
“It’s okay mommy, this is enough.”
I couldn’t say I love you enough times as I felt the world I was in getting murkier until everything was black. The sound of the birds outside became recognizable and the familiarity of the bed beneath my body grounded me back here into this state of living.
I looked at the date to make sure my milk was still good and noticed that it was the 6th.
They aren’t a thing anymore; not really, anyway. Sometimes I see the date and my heart sinks a little, but mostly it comes and goes without much of a thought. But today, the 6th hit me like bolt of lightening to my temple.
It’s been 1,125 days since I’ve held my baby girl. In one month from today it will have been 4 years.
I’m not okay with that. It’s not fine. It’s not acceptable that the only time I get to hold her is within a moment that I do not get to choose, in a world that exists only inside of my head.
But as I sit here and write this, as I feel my heart cracking and breaking beneath my skin, I understand now that she was right (as per usual).
It’s enough to hold her in my arms at a party that will never happen.
It’s enough to see her play with her cousins, for one brief moment; cousins that she’ll never actually meet.
It’s enough to hear her say I love you with the version of her voice that my memory has kept, even though I’ll never hear her say it again.
It’s enough because it’s all I have and there is no scenario where that changes.
So once again Lilee (even just in memory) teaches me an invaluable life lesson.
It’s okay to not be okay with life. It’s okay to hurt and yearn and know that your situation is not fine. But those little moments that are given to you, even if they don’t seem like they will make a difference in the grand scheme of your life, those little things need to be enough. I can’t change this, so whatever I get, a dream, a forgotten or never seen photo, a conversation with someone who knew her, a conversation about her with someone who didn’t, I have to accept that those are enough.
So I’ll hold onto each moment that presents its self with the fierceness that I held onto her.
Because they are all I have.
And they are all I’ll ever get.