A few days ago, I was out doing back-to-school shopping with Madeline. I hate back-to-school time. I get panic attacks if I let myself think too much about it, so I try to stay in the moment and not let myself get carried away (especially when it involves Madeline and Samantha). But, something was different this moment that I couldn’t shake off. Madeline could tell something was wrong and she asked if I was okay. I smiled and tried to tell her I was okay, but she wasn’t buying it.
She pressed. “Are you sick? Are you missing Emilie?”
I looked down at my sweet little girl and I looked at the time on my phone. My Madeline, who only twenty minutes earlier, had officially surpassed the life of her older sister, Emilie. My heart was broken as I answered Madeline with an honest, “Yes, Mommy is a little sad today.”
I put on a brave face, but all I could do was picture the twenty five lives that were also lost with Emilie at Sandy Hook that morning. Twenty of those killed, were little bodies, just like little Madeline there in front of me. I looked at her and couldn’t imagine someone ever wanting to hurt her (or hurt anyone for that matter). I can’t help but still ask why? It is still so sad.
Soon after Emilie died, I did the simple math in my head to know that Madeline would be older in August of this year. But as August quickly approached, I found myself compelled to find out the exact day and time. I didn’t want to get worked up about it, so secretly I decided to quickly look it up on my phone and get it over with. The date was August 12th. One week away.
The next morning, Robbie happened across the site I had been on to calculate the date on my phone. Robbie’s eye’s looked surprised as I told him what I had done. Without hesitation he said, “It’s August 12th. I looked it up last night while I was at work.” Neither of us had ever mentioned it earlier to each other and yet we both looked it up at the same time.
Back to school will always be tough. My girls growing and surpassing Emilie will always hurt a little. I just miss her. Just a couple more weeks till school starts and I will put on a smile for my two excited girls. They have so much to live for and accomplish in life and I am truly happy for them. They are my true joy!