|September 16, 2018 moon, with robin singing, |
as captured from Dublin, Ireland, by Deirdre Horan.
Every year when September 17 rolls around, it gives me a little jolt of remembrance. That was the day, 53 years ago, that my son Stephen died suddenly of spinal meningitis. He got sick in the afternoon and died that very night. I suppose that's one reason why it took me so long to recover from that terrible event, but it's never easy to lose a child, at any age. Since he was an infant, just over a year old, he was more than part of my daily life: he and I were together from the time he awoke until he went to bed.
It took a long, long time for me to be in the presence of a baby again. For more than a decade I would look away to try to keep the pain at bay. Then one day, without my noticing when exactly, I found myself looking at the sweet little chubby legs of a baby, and... the pain didn't come up. They say that time heals all wounds, and maybe it's true, but sometimes the scars left behind are debilitating.
Somebody asked me yesterday if I had any kids, and I was forced to relay the sad news that yes, indeed I did, but neither one of them is still living. When someone asks, I can feel the hesitation about having to tell the tale, but my sons were both wonderful people and I will never forget (or forsake) them as long as I'm alive.