I'm not sure how to describe some of the thoughts that have flooded my mind this past month. It feels like my future is being taken away from me one memory at a time. These aren't real memories of course, but memories I have dreamed up of our future. Future memories (if you will) that I now know won't ever be like I had pictured.
I have an actual memory from college when my dad came down for a visit and took me out to dinner. We were at a nicer restaurant, I ordered wine, and we were having an adult conversation. At this point in my life I liked to pretend that I actually knew something about wine, food, and current events. My dad made a comment about how nice it was to be at a real restaurant having a grown up conversation with his daughter. He went on to talk about all the years we spent at Applebee's and Pizza Hut, ordering off of the kids menu and using some sort of coupon...and how much better this was. My dad and I had some rocky times towards the end of high school so this was big for both of us and it has really stuck with me. I bring this up from time to time when my coworkers are talking about how they never go out anymore or how they are sick of the chain restaurants in the suburbs. I tell them that some day they will be enjoying a glass of wine with their college student, having an adult conversation, and it will be incredible.
This comes back to me a lot right now because I'm realizing that I will never have this with Conor. It's what I grieve most heavily these days. Moments like this. The growing up. The real growing up. I'm so mad that I can't have this. I remind myself that we will have other moments but I just can't let this one go. I want this.
It's weird to grieve something you didn't even have yet. You know? Conor is still our playful two year old who likes motorcycles and bears, yet somehow his life is completely different. Not much has changed since his diagnosis, aside from a few extra doctor's appointments on the calendar. And nothing will drastically change in the near future either, but eventually it will change. It will be different. The progress will slow and then stop and our expectations will stop too. This is the future I am planning for now. It's hard to describe. It's just weird.