It's that time of year again...

...the time of year when the air warms up, the flowering trees begin to bloom, I start my spring gardening... and each deep breath brings me back to this season two years ago when everything began to unravel.

I can't stop thinking about that one weekend we had. Lonia was here. Mike fought with me to support his discharge from the hospital for a three day stint in advance of his April 3 surgery. I hesitantly agreed. Thank god I did. April fool's day weekend, he was home, in his own clothes, out in the sunshine, snuggling with Baxter and enjoying the beautiful spring in our new neighborhood. It was the last time he was home.

April Fool's Day. How F*cking Perfect.

In spite of this, I find myself grief-stricken and angry - yet at the same time so so thankful for the love and warmth and laughter and comfort we have found in PJ.
He is amazing. We spent Easter dinner with his family. We walked into his parents' house, and his sister motioned for me to come into the living room where, on top of the piano, there sat a picture frame with two 3X5 photos adjacent to one another. One was of Mrs. G's (PJ's Mom's) grandsons posing together (PJ's nephews) Tommy, 4, and Colin, 2, and the other photo was the one I had given her several days prior. Baxter. In his shirt and tie, posing for his school photo about a month ago.

grandsons in one frame, and Baxter in the other.

They love him and us so much it sometimes feels like, "where did this guy come from?" It's all so overwhelming. In the most wonderful way.

Yesterday, Baxter decided that he wanted to throw a "PJ party." PJ as in Peter Joseph... not as in pajamas. PJ as in Baxter's friend who he "loves so much." I picked him up at daycare and the first words from his mouth? "Yay! PJ Party! Can we go to the party store to buy PJ balloons?" sure! PJ arrived home to find a balloon tied to the front steps and the playroom filled with balloons, including the must-have "Spidey" balloon.

When I see Bax with him, I feel like I love him for the love he has for my son.

When I'm with his family, I think I love him for the fun, crazy family he has brought into my life.

And then, when we're alone, just us, I love him for him. For his terrible Woody Allen impersonation that sounds like John Travolta in Welcome Back Kotter, for his wickedly smart brain that can tell me about planets or wasp survival mechanisms in one breath and criminal law in the next, for his nasally droning Bob Dylan impressions, for his non-stop giggles that seem to arrive at about 10 pm each night, for his insatiable need to beat a joke into the g.r.o.u.n.d, for his willingness to listen to stories of Michael and to laugh at Mike's jokes even though he's not here, for his affection and sweet words, and for his desire to be the best person he can be each day. He is a gift.

My mom thinks that Mike sent him to Bax and me. Like he gave PJ a seal of approval and orchestrated our partnership...

Well... unless Mike is working with the mechanisms of match.com, I can't totally buy that explanation - but I do feel like Mike would LOVE him. He would love hanging out with him just because he's so goofy and sweet.

But Mike on the moon? Well, if he is watching, I know it breaks his heart that he himself is not the one reading bedtime stories to baxter and helping him learn how to throw and catch a ball - but I also know that he thinks PJ is doing an amazing job.

Baxter asked PJ the other morning:
"PJ, did you know my daddy?" And before I could butt in to rescue PJ from what I perceived to be a potentially awkward moment, PJ responded, "No, Bax, I didn't know him, but I wish I did. From what you and your mom have told me, he seems like a great guy."

Bax seemed quite satisfied with that response. As did I.


Anonymous said...

wow! aj sounds amazing...as are you. enjoy this - you deserve it. mags

Anonymous said...

How is Mike's tree doing> Did it survive the winter ok? Jalena