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Wednesday, August 10, 2016

my albatross of Nothing, in memory



this empty box is too heavy to carry everywhere   
yet I choose to - every second, every minute of every day, all day
it’s my only way to keep Her name going on
for me,
for you
for you - for me

it contains
Nothing
14 years of the most burdensome of Nothing

some of the albatross of this Nothing
that I lug around perpetually:

your first snow
your first cold
your first smile
your first laugh
your first word
your first tooth
your first lost tooth
your first haircut
your first birthday
your first day of school
your first teacher
your first friend

14 birthdays
14 birthday cakes - at least
14 birthday outfits and shopping for them
14 years measuring your growth on the door frame
14 years celebrating that growth at your annual physical

14 years of good morning hugs
14 years of good night kisses
14 years of boo boo kisses

14 summers
14 autumns
14 winters
14 springs
14 years of family vacations

14 first days of school
14 years of school performances
14 trophies, at least
14 years of promotion to the next grade
14 years of class trips, dances, and proms
14 last days of school

14 years of doing your hair - whether you liked it or not
14 years of polishing your nails
14 years of shopping with you

11 years of telling you to be nice to your brother
14 years of telling you not to be as stubborn as your mommy
14 years of staring at your dimples just like your daddy’s

14 new year celebrations
14 christmases
14 hanukkahs
14 valentine days
14 mommy birthdays
14 daddy birthdays
11 mason birthdays
14 mother’s days
14 father’s days

14 years of etceteras.

every day is another day of missed seconds ticking by that go in my empty box
a lot of Nothing just keeps going in
it grows heavier each day, each month, each year, going on to each decade…
it’s my albatross

I choose to continue to lug with me everywhere
I share it with you twice a year
for me
for you
for you - for me

happy 14th birthday, in memory,

Madison Joan Friel   
august 10, 2002 - august 26, 2002 

I love you forever,
mommy