And so it begins…our year of “firsts”. Life moves on, marked by all the times we stop to celebrate. And we will celebrate. We might even celebrate exactly the way we have always celebrated. And it will still be different.
This Easter we’ll have ham. I don’t usually, but a church group gave me a gift certificate I never got around to using at the time. Jennifer has requested green bean casserole. Joshua looks forward to deviled eggs, and Shane loves strawberry salad. I always made macaroni and cheese for Trey. I cooked the onions right into the cheese sauce so that he never knew they were there. Trey had a thing about onions. This year I’m making bacon/maple scalloped potatoes. I’m sure I’ll make macaroni and cheese again…one day.
Now that it’s almost here, I wish I’d planned something different. I wish I’d invited more people who might have made more noise and filled more space. It’s going to be quieter. Trey loved to laugh…loudly…and it was contagious. And he was big. He took up lots of space. Come to think of it, Trey took up more space than any number of guests could fill. The space he left cannot be filled and it can’t be covered up by a pretty throw or an extra piece of furniture. It’s a space we’ll have to get used to. We’ll have to move around it…always aware of it…never quite sure what to do with it.
Several times this week, I’ve thought about how much more fun Easter is when spent with children. That’s what we need! We need more children! The wonder and joy of children could fill that space! I’ll share this with my kids. If they start now, we could have one heck of an Easter egg hunt in just a couple of years!
And then the pain flows back in…unexpectedly…on a wish that goes against everything I ever taught my children about safe sex. Trey’s face…his baby face…fills my mind as my heart fills with regret that he left nothing behind.
What I wouldn’t give to see that face again.