For the most part, I've let you go.
I don't feel an overwhelming urge to sob uncontrollably anymore when you cross my mind with a casual wave and bright smile. One day along this path I've been walking, I quit hoping to see your face each time someone knocks on my door unexpectedly. I can look at Little A's toes sometimes (not each time, but sometimes) and not remember your feet in flip flops hanging over the side of a boat, your pale, Irish leg gently bumping against my tan one.
For the most part, you've become a part of my life that I acknowledge with a sad sigh and then carry on tying shoes or folding laundry or pretending that I'm remotely interested in the man sitting across from me. A few times, there have even been moments when I've laughed out loud remembering you and for a few seconds I forgot that you were gone and that I might not ever laugh that way again.
There are days, though, that I hate you. Today is one of them. In fact, every time that I've taken her to the doctor by myself, part of me has hated you. Each moment that I've sat crying in a various specialists office while they explained to me the further tests that needed to be done and blood that needed to be drawn and charts that needed to be kept, I've hated you. Sometimes when I think that you are living a life that doesn't involve your every happiness being tied to what a doctor is going to say about your daughter that day, I hate you.
I wish that I could tie you up, all of you--each memory and moment--and let you sail away like a balloon in the wind, until you're just a small dot on the horizon; a distant memory of a day spent with my kids. It would be a day that we let a balloon go and wondered amongst ourselves if we'd ever hear back from the person that found you, or if you'd land someplace where you couldn't be found. In this wish, you'd become a passing source of curiosity, but nothing that kept us up at night. Instead of remembering you specifically (it was blue, no it was red), we'd remember the way that the sun felt on our faces, the way that the breeze tossed our blonde hair across our fair faces, the way that our laughter sounded when it met and danced away with the wind that carried it. The girls would remember that we walked back to the car holding hands and that I kissed both of their foreheads before they got in. I would remember how they smelled when I kissed them.
I hate that I hated you today; that you'd even still matter enough to bother to hate. I hate that I wish that you'd been there, holding my hand, asking what you can do to make sure your daughter is healthy and telling me not to cry, that it would be alright. I hate that tonight when I lay down to sleep, I'll be wondering how you can exist not knowing if we are well, how you can curl up against someone else and plan to make a family with her someday, even though you left a perfectly good family behind.
Today was a day that I hated you, and I thought you should know why.