A barefoot hike and a spicy little dragon

Ronan. Every single morning I wake up, the first thing I do is miss you. I will never be the mama that wakes up with a fresh set of eyes. My eyes are always sad, mostly bloodshot and my heart is always heavy. Every single morning, I have to make a choice to get out of bed. It’s a choice because a lot of days, I do not want to wake up at all. After a very heavily induced Ambien coma sleep last night (yeah, I totally went there), I woke up this morning saying all kinds of shit in my head. You HAVE to get up today. You HAVE to make 2 decisions today. You HAVE to check 2 things off of your list. You have to start making some decisions about Ronan’s death day/birthday that is approaching. I get up. I make my way to your brothers room the same way I do every morning. I walk past your room. My stomach drops that you are not in there. Your bed is neatly made. I go into Liam and Quinn’s bedroom. I open their blinds. “Good morning, boys! Rise and shine!” I turn on their shower. I text back and forth with Rita. We make some plans for tonight, as a family. YAY! I get to see her little dragon! I pack your brothers lunches and drop them off at school. “Bye boys! Have the best day! Try your hardest! Be nice! Be kind! Help others! But don’t take anyone’s crap! I love you!”

I decide to make a run to Target for a couple of things and one of them includes a couple of little trucks for my little dragon friend of mine. I get so excited about seeing him. I love his little raspy voice, the way he says my name over and over, just to say it, and the way I get to hear him call out to Rita, “Mama,” because that is what he calls her. I am a sucker for that mama word. I am a sucker for the way he sometimes talks about himself in 3rd person. I am a sucker for this little dragon friend of mine who makes me want another baby/child so freaking badly. I would actually just like to take him home, but I don’t his two totally amazeballs parents, would be o.k. this. I’ll just continue to take him in the doses I get him in, which totally makes my day.

It’s while browsing through the toy aisle at Target that I of course, walk past the Star Wars toys. I can’t resist. My heart flip-flops back and forth. New guys! New helmet guys that Ronan did not have, but totally would have wanted. I pick them up. I put them back. I almost walk away. I can’t. I turn around and grab the new guys and throw them in my cart. I’m buying them for Ronan. I don’t care if he is not here to play with them. I run home, look at my get two fucking things done list, I sit down and do them. Good job, you. I look around at our house. It’s so freaking clean. Everything is put away. There is not even laundry to do or windows to clean from your little pudgy, dirty hands smearing stuff everywhere. This is FUCKING BULLSHIT. I throw on my workout clothes. Well, since there is no maybe baby, I guess I can go beat myself up a bit. I drive to our mountain.

I listen to Dr. JoRo’s voice in my head telling me, no headphones… just try to be quiet. To be mindful. I run up our mountain. Except instead of taking our usual route when I get to the top, I turn the corner instead. I slip off my shoes and continue up, down, around, and around the unfamiliar trails. It’s hot. Nobody is around at all. My heaven. Inferno hiking season is almost back. My feet don’t really feel any pain. I run for a long time, barefoot. I stop after about an hour and a half of hiking up, up and up. I find a nice spot, throw my things down, sit down on a big, black rock. I close my eyes for a long time and think about you. I snap a picture to send to Rita. She responds back that the cactus I’m sitting in front of, looks like it flipping off cancer. I laugh. It totally does.

I head back down the mountain, keeping my shoes off for half of the way. I stop to put them on and start to cry. A few ideas trickle into my head about what it is, that I would like to ask people to do for your death day. I’ve decided that’s what I’m calling it. Not your passing day (that sounds too sweet) not your anniversary (i hate that too) I guess I could call it your Fuckiversary. That has a nice ring to it as well. You deathday/fucking bullshit Fuckiversary it is. I know a lot of people will want to do something. I’m creating a little list in my head of what it is, I would like to see done. Up until today, I have not been able to even think about it without getting physically ill and drawing a total blank. It was only today, during my hike of numb pain, that ideas started to spin around. I’ll write about them later, not tonight. I’m tired and I want to be able to let this all come about, naturally, and I don’t feel like I’ve gotten it all figured out yet.

My little hike lasted 3 hours. It was nice to be outside, connecting with nature in a physical way. I get in a funk when I don’t do things like that. I always feel close to you and I tend to feel the closest to you, on that little mountain of ours. I left your bracelets all over the same tree below, like I do every single time I am there. I always wonder who finds them. I always wonder if they will google your name and learn about the most beautiful little boy who ever lived. I hope they do.

I went to your favorite restaurant tonight, Chelsea’s Kitchen, with that little Dragon friend of mine, his parents, your daddy and brothers. I felt like you were there with us. Especially as I watched Little Dragon, jump into the water fountain outside of the restaurant with his shoes, socks and pants on. If you were there, you totally would have done it with him and I would have laughed. I laughed and I almost heard your giggles in the distance. I laughed even harder when that Little Dragon, grabbed someone’s shoe that was just sitting near a rock by the patio (seriously who takes their shoes off, at a restaurant?? if you ask me, they were just begging to be thrown into the water by a very curious 4/maybe 5 year old) and threw it in the fountain/pond. Such a little rebel Ronan move. Your brothers thought it was hilarious. Rita, apologized profusely, but secretly /not so secretly to me, thought it was funny. I looked up at the sky and blew you a kiss. It was a great ending to an almost good day.

I love you to the moon and back my very spicy, little monkey boy. I’m so sorry for all of this. I miss you. I love you. I hope you are safe.

xoxo

A pretty perfect playday with our new friends and a hummingbird.

Ronan. Monday. Presidents Day. Or in other words….. your brothers get to stay home from school day so you’d better act like a normal mama, and make a fun plan for them like you would have back in the day. A fun plan was made for me a few days ago.

Incoming text message from Margarita: Do you want to take the boys roller skating on Monday? On the west side?

Me: Total awesomeness. Roller skating? On the west side? That is so dangerous. Yes, please.

A plan was in place. One less thing I had to think about.

The morning came and I woke up feeling extremely hung over for some reason. It was not due to the imaginary shots/wine/beer I drank. I think I was hung over from the amount of restless sleep that had consumed me once again, during the night. I hopped in the shower, got your brothers up, showered and we were out the door and shoved into this bright, bright world. I took them to Taylor’s for breakfast. “Table for 3?” the waitress cooed. My brain automatically went to, no… table for 4. Where’s Ro? I looked behind me. “Oh, yeah. Table for 3, please.” Fuck. That will never sound right. I sat with your brothers and watched as they inhaled their food. Pancakes, eggs, fruit, 4 sides of bacon, toast. Geez. I cannot keep those brothers of yours, full enough. They eat twice as much as I do. You would have given them a run for the money though. Oh, how you LOVED to eat. You were always my best little eater. We finished our breakfast and drove over to Rita’s house so we could follow her to the roller skating rink. Or as I was soon to discover, my heaven.

Your brothers were excited as they had never been roller skating before. We entered the facility which was packed full of every different kind of person you could imagine. Tiny kids, young kids, tweens, teenagers, adults, grandparents…. you name it. The roller skating rink was dark and disco colored balls lit up the ceilings. I was instantly transferred back to 1989, where problems did not exist. Ummmm…. excuse me. How did I not know that this place existed? A dark place you could go, in the middle of the day, where the best/worst top 40’s music is so loud that you could hardly think straight…. all while on roller-skates! It does not get any better, than that. Your brothers were less than thrilled. I don’t think they will be trading their basketball shoes in, anytime soon for a pair of roller-skates. I got the two of them out on the rink a couple of times, but they were so unco√∂rdinated all they did was skate, fall, skate, fall…. over and over again. They were not the least bit impressed with my mad roller skating, look at me, I can twirl around skills. I held their hands as we tried to skate together. I did not hold back my laughter as they continued to fall. They both reminded me of that scene in the movie, “Bambi,” where he is a baby and he is just learning how to walk. Legs flying everywhere so long that little Bambi just cannot get them to cooperate. They were both good sports and by the end of our hour there, I had Liam skating around the rink hardly falling at all. Quinn was over it pretty fast and could not wait to get out of there. I could have stayed there all day. In fact, the next time I go missing in the middle of the day…. you’ll know where to find me. Great Skate hanging out with my new mid 40’s man friend with the most epic mullet and Van Halen shirt I have ever seen. Next time I go I am totally rocking my Van F-ing Halen tee so we will match. Great Skate rules.

We continued on with our little playdate and Rita and Dragon, came over. It was a spur of the moment, let’s salvage the day and play plan. It was our first play date with them and the boys were excited to have their new little friend over. Their little friend was just wanting to play with some trucks. “I’ve got some trucks,” I said to Rita. “Come over.” So they did. Little Dragon had trucks on the brain so I led him into your room. Rita gave me a look and said, “Are you sure???” I told her I was without a doubt sure. I practically begged her to let her little Dragon, into your room to play with the baskets of toys that are just sitting there. We grabbed about 6 trucks and headed out into your backyard. Rita looked at me again, “You’re really sure.” I gave her my best I’m strong but really sad smile and said I was absolutely sure. That it would make me sad, if your toys were not played with. And play that little Dragon did. Alone for a while, while Liam built pirate ship legos in your room and Quinn tossed the football around with me. I heard Rita yell, “Where in the world did you learn to throw a football like that?!” I yelled back at her, that I wasn’t sure, but apparently it meant I was meant to have all boys. Quinn and I were tossing the ball around for about 15 minutes when it happened. I was feeling good about being a good mom, and playing with Quinn. I never feel that way anymore, mainly due to the fact that I feel like I am freaking crying/hiding all the time. I was standing in our yard and I kid you not, a purple headed humming-bird flew right up to my face and stayed there for a good 30 seconds. I thought it was going to kiss my face. What in the world? Am I dreaming this? I froze. Hummingbirds don’t come this close to people and just stay there, do they? It’s head is purple…. I thought to myself. I must be dreaming. Or dead. Then I heard Quinn, “MOM! The hummingbird! It’s head is purple!” Just as he said those words, it flew off. Whoa. That was weird. I’m not dreaming. Quinn saw it too. I didn’t know what to think or do, so I continued to throw the football back and forth with Quinn. I couldn’t stop thinking about the hummingbird. Was that a sign? A Ro sign? I don’t know but you always hear about how after you lose someone you love, signs appear. Was that it? Or was it just a freaking hummingbird? I told myself not to over think it. Just to go with it. It was a little Ro sign indeed. It’s been a while since I’ve had one of those and it felt nice. Thanks baby.

We played outside for the next couple of hours. I watched Quinn play with little Dragon, just like the way he used to play with you. It hurt/felt good all at the same time. I felt my heart fall in love with this little Dragon that I hardly know, instantly. I watched the way he played in the dirt, destroyed part of Liam’s army Alamo that’s set up by our rocks, played trucks, laughed with Quinn, they took the hose and washed your truck together. Everything that they did were all the things Quinn used to do with you. It was almost too much, but it wasn’t. It’s just the way it’s going to have to be from now on. All that mattered was that two little boys’, had the best play date ever and they were both happy. That in turn, made me feel alright. That little humming-bird appeared again and did the exact same thing to me, just as our day was coming to an end. I think it was your way of telling me good job for being such a good mom for the day. I think it was also your way of telling me that our new friends are extra, extra special. I kind of already knew that though. After our friends left, I fell apart in the garage and let myself cry for everything that used to be, but will never be again. I mainly just fell apart because I miss you so much and I have no control over how much it hurts sometimes. Uncontrollable tears are part of this process. I’m sure they will be, for the rest of my life. I’m o.k. with that. I’m o.k. with the tears. You are worth each one of them.

Today was pretty awesome. Not really, because all I did was get caught up on everyday things that I now hate. And I went to the freaking grocery store, which you know I hate. It’s one of the places, that I miss you most. “Come on Maya! Be a good mom! Get your kids some healthy food and try to cook at least 2 meals this week! You can do it!” That was myself, giving myself a pep talk today as I almost aborted grocery store shopping mission. I pushed my little cart, though out the store and missed you so badly, that I found myself magically transported to the toy aisle where I could not move. Frozen in front of the Star Wars toys on aisle 9. I wonder if Ronan would like this guy…. Oh! A guy he didn’t have! Should I buy it? The conversations in my head go on and on all day long like this. The anger came next. -Maya get out of the fucking toy aisle. Ronan is dead, you do not need to buy him any Star Wars toys today. I went and took my anger out on the Kosher food aisle instead. I’ve never made Potato Latkes before. I’m going to make some fucking Potato Latkes today. I’m going to peel, a fuckton of potatoes and make the best Potato Latkes that have ever existed. I drove home after the grocery store and took the rest of my anger out on cleaning out our refrigerator and getting all the laundry done. I find myself, washing the blankets and sheets in your room, just to do so. Sometimes I secretly think if I wash them enough times, you will come back. Or sometimes I don’t want you to feel left out, so I wash your clothes too. Your little socks are still in my purse. I take them everywhere.

I went on a run tonight to clear my head. I wore my new favorite running shirt which simply says, “Fuck Cancer.” It makes me run faster. I guess I’m still sick because 5 minutes into my run, I started coughing and my chest was burning so badly that it felt like it was on fire. I told myself to suck it up even though all I wanted to do was turn back home and crawl into bed. I didn’t though. I ran so hard/fast for 5 miles that I ended up throwing up on the side of the road. I heard the little voice in my head telling me not to stop, because how was I going to Fuck Cancer if I gave in so easily to the pain of my run, due to being sick. Being sick is for the weak. You were never weak which means I have no right to be either, baby. I sucked it up today for you. I finished my run, came home and took Liam on a date. We went to dinner, where another little thing happened. There was this girl there, playing acoustic guitar and singing. She’s really good, I said to that Liam brother of yours. He agreed. I heard her say, “The next few songs are going to be covers of Taylor Swift.” No freaking way, I thought. Who is this little child prodigy who just made my Ronight? Liam and I listened to her. I held his hand. We both smiled. It was if you were there with us, on our little date. I need this girl, to play at one of our events. She’s awesome. After we paid the bill, I gave Liam some money, a bunch of RoCards, and about 6 bracelets. I told them to put them all in her tip jar. He was so excited to do so. I hope she looks at your little face, looks up this website and something Romazing comes out of this. I think she was worthy of you tonight. Her voice, guitar playing and choice of songs told me this. Liam agreed. After our dinner date, I took your smarty pants brother to the bookstore. My other heaven in life. The book store. I could spend hours in them and so could he. His love for reading has taken off like wildfire! I am so excited about this as I was always such a bookworm. Reading used to be one of my favorite things to do in life. I miss it. Maybe it’s time I start taking it up again. I kind of feel like I could be ready. We shall see. It’s the lack of concentration that seems to be killing me. That and my non-existent memory… the one that I can’t find. Has anybody seen it? I would really like it back…. it’s starting to become a problem. You know it’s a problem when your daddy comes home from work, looks at me and says, “What did you do today?” My reply is always, ” I can’t remember.” And I literally never can. Then I get frustrated, start to cry, and wonder if my brain will ever be the same again. At this point, I’m thinking no.

Much more to write about little monkey man but your brother, Quinny, is looking extra snuggly. I’m going to curl up with him for the night. I’m sorry I can’t curl up to you. It breaks my heart every night. I love you so much. I miss you so much. I hope you are safe. Please, please be safe. Sweet dreams little man. ILOVEYOUILOVEYOUILOVEYOUILOVEYOUILOVEYOUSOOOOOOMUCH.

xoxo