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Letters to Taylor:On Change
Shh! Don’t tell anyone I used that word, because the kids aren’t allowed to say it. I never say it aloud. Just doesn’t sound ladylike.
But what I mean is that change is almost always difficult. Though I’m working to find joy through the transition of adapting to life without you, sorrow still runs deep. We were creatures of habit, you and me. I hardly know what to do without your routine to keep me grounded. I’m finding a weird mesh of my old routines and new variations.
Life without you was just weird and strange at first, and now the reality of change has entered the picture. For so many years, our life as a family evolved around caring for you. Your needs were prioritized because they had to be. I know you understand. But folks looking in from the outside didn’t always understand. Your siblings have learned a lot of patience over the years, waiting their turn until you were finished. I am hoping that your time on earth with them was enough for them to remember growing up with a special needs sister and all that it means. I’m proud of their gorgeous hearts and continually pray that they remain sensitive to those who suffer.
We finished painting your room and your younger sister is beginning to move into it. We’ve stopped calling it “Taylor’s room.” It bothered me for a hot minute, but I’m 100% sure that your heavenly “room” is bigger than Daddy and Mommy ever could have provided. I suppose some feel that you gave up your room in our home for a place at the cemetery. Thankfully, I know better. What’s it like to live in a mansion? How do gold streets feel under your feet? Inquiring minds want to know.
Change is inevitable. As I’ve processed through your clothes and toys and blankets and held them in my hands and heart, a lot of my thoughts centered around one focus: “Things will never be the same again.” But the core thought that follows, the determination I’m pursuing, is that while it’s true that things will never be the same again, we can’t fail to allow the change to affect us for the good. How we choose to live after the change is where the beauty of the change will unfold.
After missing you so very much last week, Friday held a sweet blessing. Several weeks ago, I gave your pajamas to a seamstress. I haven’t been as quick to proactively work on projects since you’ve been gone and felt it best to hire someone for a little pj transformation. Each of your brothers and sisters chose a pair of your pajamas and instead of holding on to them as they were, a pair of pajamas that couldn’t be worn by just anyone, they were recreated into a sweet teddy bear.
The seamstress did a beautiful job; I absolutely adore the bears. But it’s interesting how the bears most beautiful to me are not the ones made of the newest pajamas you owned. Nor even the ones with the cutest designs on the fabric.
My favorites are the ones made from the thinnest, worn-down pairs of pajamas that graced your broken body, for they frequently clothed a soul of beauty and worth. This little bear represents an old soul in a new body. It’s so you.
You are missed, sweet girl. But please know that the change will not be for naught.
I love you.