July, My Teacher

It’s another July now. I hardly recollect the date on the calendar, but an old feeling of emptying all of my insides holds me hostage. Now, July is meant to celebrate my oldest earth child, but that fact doesn’t quite replace the other fact that I lost my A.G. officially July 27 almost 5 years ago.

In short, July may always be a month of grief. The last day of June ticks by and suddenly I am in the flood of memories, tears, and longing. I see my two beautiful earth sons and – in a way that hasn’t presented itself in other months – there seems to be someone missing now.

Not just someone: A.G. …the child that makes me hesitate when I almost tell Adrian he’s the oldest child…the one who’s memory cuts me off mid-sentence when I almost say, “your only brother” referring to Luca. I find myself rewording all my similar-minded sentences to frame a vague reality – not committing to a reality with or without additional brothers and sisters for my earth children. I haven’t decided how I will communicate that yet.

I find my mind wandering to family photos that will never be with more bodies present. I sit on the couch with my husband and boys and fill in A.G.’s missing silhouette on the still vacant couch cushion. I think of the home we are building and the extra bedroom we have upstairs, silently mourning not just A.G. this time, but all of the “missed earth connections” I will call them – pregnancy related and adoption related.

Luca is over 5 months old now, and I think my brain is just trying to integrate this post-family planning stage – the one where I have two, incredibly amazing boys – with the reality that I can never resurrect these other missed connections. I think as long as I was stuck in family planning mode, there was a piece of me that didn’t have to fully face all of the loss. As I don’t foresee anymore children, I now have to acknowledge that 100 percent. The failed adoptions stay that way. I also know 4 out of 6 of our pregnancies ended in loss. Period.

All of this is to say that while I will forever remain on an incredible high because I get to raise these two miracle boys, I also can’t forget the pain of the journey. It hurts. But, in the end, that’s where the compassion remains. That’s where I find my deepest hopes for my other loves walking any kind of similar journey.

So…July. Its a month of grief, but also it’s my teacher of compassion, resilience, and grace for myself and others. It’s my darkest month and my first miracle month. It continues to teach me that I can’t ever fill in my closest companions with all I have been through, but also that it’s not necessary for a deep friendship to remain. It just requires more acceptance from them and from me. So, hello July, my companion. Here we go again.