I’ve always really liked Halloween. Before I became a mother it was a fun day filled with candy, ridiculous costumes, and scary movies. I’m not sure how I feel about it this year. Then again, I’m not sure how I feel about most things. This year is drastically different than previous years. This is my first year as a bereaved mother.
One year ago today, I was about four months pregnant. My husband and I had recently found out we were having a baby girl and were already planning our lives around her. She became the center of our universe. During every holiday and celebration, we talked about, “This time, next year…” Halloween was no exception.
This time next year, we’ll have a seven month old.
What should we dress her up as for Halloween? A pumpkin? Or maybe a cupcake?
No need to decide on a costume now. We’ll have plenty of time to decide next October.
She’ll be too young to trick-or-treat, but we can still do something.
Let’s go for a walk around the neighborhood while the older children trick-or-treat.
I could not have been more wrong.
I wish I had actually picked out her costume when I had the chance last year. I wish I had bought it and hung it in her closet, even if it was a year early. At least I would have done something with her for Halloween, while she was still alive.
I guess it doesn’t really matter. A costume hanging in the closet wouldn’t change the heartache. It wouldn’t change the fact that I was robbed as a mother. It wouldn’t make it any easier, year after year, Halloween after Halloween. It wouldn’t bring her back.
My baby girl isn’t here. I will never get to dress her in a silly costume. Her dad will never get to help her ring our neighbor’s doorbell for the very first time. We will never get to see her eyes light up as we put the candle in her jack-o-lantern. We will never get to watch “It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” TV special as a family. We will never get to send her to school with Halloween goodies for her class. We will never get to see her go off on her first trick-or-treat outing with her friends.
Instead of walking around my neighborhood with my adorable seven month old daughter, I will stay home and hand out candy, just as I’ve done every year. On the surface, my Halloween is the same as it’s always been. Deep down, beneath the forced smiles and pretend laughter, it is very different.
Not a day goes by that I don’t imagine my life as it should be, the way it was meant to be. Today, I picture my little girl resting against my chest as she sits in her sling. I look down and see a white hat, decorated with rainbow colored fabric sprinkles and a bright red pompom. My beautiful little cupcake. How sweet she smells…
And then I come back to reality. One year ago today, my life was filled with lots of “somedays.” Today, like every day, it is filled with incessant reminders of what will never be. Halloween is now one of the “nevers.”
Shared on October 31, 2015