Tomorrow evening I will take the kids over to the senior center to vote for our next president. It is important to me that my daughter sees that she has rights that should never be taken for granted. She needs to understand that she should be educated on the issues at hand and look at the candidates from every angle, not just how the media spins them.
I’d be lying if I said that I haven’t been caught up in all of the hoopla that came along with this election cycle. It was hard to ignore on social media, even after I ‘unfollowed’ some folks for their ridiculous posts or comments. It was everywhere! It’s been all that we have talked about, fought about for months. Tomorrow is a very important day for this country. I’m so happy to be able to execute this right as a woman.
As a mother, tomorrow is a far more important day. It marks the the third year anniversary of the last time that we held our son. Three years ago we last saw him smile, stroked his hair and heard his voice. Three years ago we said good bye.
It was the worst thing imaginable. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to deal with. Mother’s aren’t supposed to outlive their children. Pain like that doesn’t ever end. It changes you for life. You are never the same.
For three years I have lived without my son. Every single day I think of him. Every single day I ache for him. I would give everything and anything to just hold him one more time, run my hand through his hair and smell his little boy scent.
Tomorrow we will go to the cemetery and bring him his Halloween pumpkin. My daughter will be uncomfortable and running around and my other son will sit and play with the toys at the gravestone for a brother that he never knew. We will talk, maybe read a book and say good bye again.
My husband and I will be drained because we will be reminded of the horror that surrounds this day. For a moment I will catch myself off guard and I will remember holding my sons lifeless body and sobbing. We’ll tuck the kids into bed and hold on a little longer than we should, because we know all too well how quickly things can change. There are no guarantees.
We will probably stay awake as late as possible to see who is elected. And we will either breathe a sigh of relief or be completely devastated that another November 8th has ended in tragedy.
Here’s the thing though, I will still go to sleep tomorrow night and wake up the next morning. I will still be able to kiss my babies and go to work on Wednesday. I will be able to turn off the ‘unfollow’ button on the Facebook machine and get back to my life.
I’ve already lived through the worst thing that could ever happen to me. I’m here today because some pretty incredible people have stood beside us and showed us so much love and kindness in the face of loss.
Yes, this election is a big deal. Is it the biggest deal to me? I often find myself asking now in tough situations, ‘is this life or death?’ The answer is always no. It makes it a little easier to stomach in that moment.
Maybe it’s a coping mechanism I’ve developed. I’d like to think it’s clarity. Either way it works for me.
Tomorrow isn’t just about our next president to me. It’s about my family and what’s missing. It’s about loss and heartache, but it’s mostly about love. One little boy and his love for life.