May 12th is Ronan’s fourteen birthday. It is also Ronan’s Day of Love. Wear purple. Be brave. Do a random act of kindness. Laugh louder. Hug harder. Kiss longer. Explore nature. Have an adventure for him. Sprinkle his magic wherever you can. Tag me, and I’ll repost all the love.
Liam and Quinn will be eighteen in June. Poppy just turned eight.
Ten years ago today, you left this earth; you left me, you left us.
Prayers didn’t save you.
Medicine didn’t save you.
My primal screams didn’t save you.
Love didn’t save you.
I would have done anything to save you. I would have traded my life for yours in an instant, but unfortunately, that’s not the way life works.
You left me behind, and on most days, I am ok. I have learned to carry this grief and carry it well. And on the days where I cannot, like yesterday, I give in to this pain. I let myself weep for your touch, your voice, your mischievous laugh, and your smothering kisses. I let myself go to the darkest places where I end up saying things like, “I’m a bad mom. I’m a bad mom. I didn’t hold him after he died. I just let them take him away from me.” I watched them wheel you down the hallway on a gurney—your tiny, lifeless body. I should have gone with you. To wherever they were taking you. But I didn’t, and that guilt haunts me still. It is essential to my healing that I allow myself to go to the darkest places. I learned long ago not to fear the darkness of this. For as much as this pain hurts, I know I must allow myself to feel it as rawly as I can. My grief is a testament to my love for you; my grief is my superpower. It has taught me that my love has no limits and that empathy is what makes the world go round.
In my darkest hours, I eventually find my way back because of words like, “You were the best mom to him. You are the most incredible mom still. I love you, and I’m not leaving you.” In those moments, I find my way back to your brothers: my gentle giant, Liam, who has the most brilliant mind and the heart of the fiercest lion. Your brother Quinn lights up a room with his infectious laugh and quick-witted banter. Your little sister, Poppy. The one you begged me for, and I will forever think you had a hand in giving to me. She is your twin flame, your wild ways with the most thoughtful soul. She fills me with so much peace and is the best thing to have happened to me since losing you. Often I find myself sobbing in my car over the love I have for you and the three of them. I wouldn’t have been able to go on if not for them, this I know.
Love didn’t save you, but it has saved me. My week has been filled with messages from people checking on me. Family and loved ones checking in. Friends sending messages things like, “How can I support you?” There have been so many messages about you. How much you are loved. How you will never be forgotten. How our love has changed lives. There is a constant acknowledgment of my pain. There is genuine concern for our family. There is no judgment, only unconditional love. My tears finally have the safest place to land. My days are filled with whispers of “do you know how much I love you?” And “you made me a better person.” I found my freedom and a love that has saved my life. My life is full of the kindest people. The most compassionate people. For as unlucky as I have been, I am also the luckiest.
Happy Mother’s Day? Happy Mother’s Day. Thank you to all of you who have checked in on us. Thank you for acknowledging the loss of Ronan, and thank you for forever carrying him in your hearts. Your words and your endless support means everything to me. It’s one of the reasons that I will not only get through today, but I will continue to get through this life.
I love you, Ro.
I miss you.
I love you.
I hope you are safe.
I love you, JV.
Take care of our Ronan for us.
Fuck fucking cancer.