Our calendars start in June in our house. Creating them is one of my favorite things to do - I look forward to it every year. I make them in June for a very silly reason - it makes a great Father's Day gift! Ed has a special one for work to recap the year in photos - and we have one in the kitchen. Every calendar - since the first year we were married - has been named. "Our First Year" "The Year We Met Gavin" "Brian's First Year"... you get the idea. I save them all - they are like mini history books.
This year's calendar was difficult to make. Gavin had been gone for two months.
I loved going through all the photos for each month - until I got to April.
Once I hit April, there were no more photos of Gavin. I remember sitting in front of my computer with tears streaming down my face. I wanted to somehow fit every single photo I had into that month. I didn't want to face that this was it.
As I flipped the calendar each month since last June, I felt so happy every time I went to the refrigerator. The pictures recounted memories that were so recent.
The summer photos were my favorite... especially the ones from the beach. But painful, as well, knowing we will never experience Gavin's joyful face as the waves crash around him.
September is his birthday month. It is so hard to believe he would have been seven on his next birthday. Yet now here we are - he is frozen. Forever five.
I know I will get excited about creating calendars again. I know that I will miss Gavin's big milestones in photos - like taking steps on his own.
His milestones will be replaced with his baby sister's big moments. And that will be wonderful.
But part of me dreads every time I have to flip that calendar now. It is a harsh visual reminder that we are moving further and further away from Gavin.
I will still add him to our calendars each year... but it will never, ever be the same.
He is frozen at five.