A Toddler’s Dream

There are days when I do not believe I get to live this life.
Days where grief is heavy and I cannot believe I will have this “life’s sentence” of living without Ava.  
And days where I cannot begin to believe that I get to have our living child, our Lillian, with us. 
Everything hurts when you are grieving. Especially those things you always wanted for your child.  Popsicles running down her sticky arms, shoeless and running through the long summer grass.  A swing set.  A kiddie pool.  That laughter that would fill the yard, sunblock tasting kisses and late nights with the fireflies.  It is what we were all promised in a way and what was taken away.  
It is also why we hid the summer after Ava died.  We hid in our house and ignored the summer sun.  We did not go anywhere or do anything that reminded us of our dreams lost. It was simply too difficult.  Maybe that is why this Dream on Russet really does feel so idyllic. We are now getting to do what we lost.  A second chance.  I am not naive. I know how lucky that chance is and I soak up every moment I can of it.  There are many days when I cannot believe I get to live this life.  
Something as simple as a swing set. 

 We live on a street with lots of kids. Each house has something else to add to the chaos and joy of summer.  Slides, bouncy castles, sandboxes and now we have the swing set.  It took two weekends for Matthew to build it.  These kits come in a million pieces!

 After the end of day one Matthew had gotten this far.  Pretty impressive with a toddler in tow and three households of kids begging to know when it would be done.

Lillian was obsessed with it from the start.  She grasped very quickly what we were doing and in true toddler fashion got right in the thick of it.  Matthew would give her a bolt and she would whack it on the wood frame saying,

“fix! Ellian, fix! Boken! Fix!”

Daddy and his helper

Matthew put the finishing touches on it the second weekend while she was tucked away in bed.  It was far too late for her to see it but she was elated when she woke in the morning.  It was Christmas and her birthday combined as she demanded to go straight outside to play “park” even before breakfast.  We went right outside, jammies and all.  She adores her park.

A Toddler’s Dream and ours

I know it will never be lost on me how fortunate we are to have what we do.  And not the park but the girl to build it for and the joy she brings our life each and every day.