The lessons we learn often mean more to us when we reflect on them after a period of time has passed. I may not have have the time to sit with my thoughts as often as I would like, but each time I do I learn something new about my grief journey. It is really hard to look at pictures of Bella. Despite my strength and how far I have come, looking back on the memories we made together causes me to break. It’s not the same kind of pain that used to surface but it is definitely painful to think about all that is missing.
I am fortunate to have many memories with Bella captured in photos. I spent all day yesterday organizing thousands of photos I took with my iPhone this past year. Yes, THOUSANDS! When Hudson was a baby, I began to fear forgetting moments of his life. I feared forgetting the sound of his cry, the smell of his hair, his facial expressions and the cute things he would do. After Bella was born, I feared these things even more. I even feared forgetting the sound of her cry after hearing it 9 hours a day for 3.5 months. I thought I was crazy but I somehow knew that I would lose a child someday. I felt a need to have more than one child in case something ever happened to one of my children. I assumed those thoughts were normal fears but now know it was my intuition preparing me for the inevitable.
My intuition is what led me to take so many pictures, and I am so thankful for listening to my inner voice. I took photos of Bella almost every day of her life, many of which I still have not seen. The purpose of Project Life was to post a photo of her for each day of her life, as many days that I was able to. I hoped to complete it before I returned to work, but I returned sooner than I had anticipated. I don’t think I was ready to look through all those photos yet. I’m still not sure I am ready, or if I will ever be. I look at some, a little at a time, whenever I need a dose of my angel.
Photos are memories we never have to fear forgetting. They are moments captured forever. I shouldn’t feel rushed to complete my project as there is no time limit on it. Project Life will not expire. Bella’s photos won’t fade. My memories are safe and I will share them with the world when I am ready.