Anticipating one year

New born ShepWe are 10 days away from the one year anniversary of Shepherd’s pool accident. I’m not sure how I really feel about it. June burst on the scene with Aunt B’s wedding and hasn’t seemed to stop sprinting yet…maybe I should be grateful. Less time to stew, less free moments for my mind to wander down the dark alley leading back to that day, the worst day of all our lives. We got big plans for the weekend of June 21st. As a couple and a family, Erron and I have made plans to re-claim that date for joy, re-branding it as a day to celebrate what was returned to us, the love that was shown to us, and recognizing how far we’ve come this year.

I’m at a loss to describe the emotions I feel towards hitting the one year mark. I suppose thankfulness triumphs over the other, more complicated feelings. Thank you God, our sweet Shepherd lives, and he is thriving. Thank you God, my marriage is still in-tact….thankfulness for our friends, supportive families….there so much to be grateful for. But underneath that gratefulness, the pain still smolders a bit…the anxiety still pressing in on me when I wish it would just go away forever.

In one afternoon, everything I knew about myself and my life seemed to be stripped from me, and though I’m proud of who I am today, I like who I’ve become, the simpler version of me is morned. I cannot go back, even if I wanted to.

Shep fighting

Shep early in with daddy

As for Shepherd, that boy seems to be doing great despite  what happened to him. He’s still bright, still astoundingly creative and captivating, still complicated. He’s still Shepherd, the one I knew before June 21st, 2014. But as parents, Erron and I continue to worry…Shepherd made his entrance into the world 2 months early which means I was born into motherhood with anxiety strapped to me like a dead-weight. It’s hard to untie the knots of worry, which have since been intertwined with threads of guilt, much more so now than before. I wrestle with this feeling, this anxiety that causes me (and Erron) to stress over Shepherd’s impossibly short attention span, his seemingly intense emotions, and  his struggle to retain facts he’s not interested in. When I worry, I feel a bit like I’m cheating on faith. Like I’m failing to recognize the miracle every doctor has told us he is. I remember, trust me, I remember…but I’m human too.

Shep just born

Writing this post has made me realize there is a part of me that is still so, so sad Shepherd fell in the pool. I’m still heartbroken it happened. But that’s ok. It’s not unfaithful to suffer, it’s not weak to feel pain, and today I’m going to let myself be sad. Because the weekend of June 21st, I will have none of it. I will spend it rejoicing over our miracle, and the beauty that was born out of our ashes. I said it last June, and I’ll say it again…God is good all the time, and all the time, God is good.

Shep kissing momma

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