The day started with a wintry mix so by 10:30am there was a thin layer of snow on the trees and on the ground which was actually quite pretty. But by mid-day the snow had turned to rain, and thick, grey, gloomy clouds had settled over us - pretty apropos for the sad day that it was.
I have gone back over the previous "anniversary" posts (The day after burial, 1 year later, 2 years later, 3 years later) and still find it hard to believe that this tragedy happened to us. It remains difficult to comprehend, reconcile, absorb and digest. I don't deny that it happened but the disbelief is still strong.
I have put all our pictures of Josh on a digital frame which usually sits in the family room, but has been moved to the kitchen counter this weekend. While I wait for the tea kettle to boil, I watch the slideshow of his life and just shake my head and think for the umpteenth time: "why Josh why?" This is immediately followed by self-recriminating thoughts of how I did not give him what he needed - to live or to want to live. This well-rehersed pattern of thought is not part of my intellect, (for I can reason my way out of guilt), but lies in my heart - the seat of emotion. It is hard to reason with a feeling: especially one as strong as a mother's guilt.
There are a couple of things that make this day bearable. One: we had our 4th annual Running to Remember Josh on Saturday which was a great success (a post will be coming shortly). And two: all the friends who have gotten in touch via the various way we communicate these days (text, email, e-card, face book) to say they are thinking of us and most importantly, remembering our beloved Josh.
Josh changed our life when he came into the world on January 16, 1992
This was our last family photo taken at Thanksgiving 2008
This shirt was created in memory of Josh in the first year and graces one of his friend's room in a frat house
My friend, Rox, wrote this while in Hawaii on a recent trip
The front of this year's half-marathon running shirt...
....and the back
Runners and supporters before the start
On Sunday, Rox put up this wind chime on Josh's tree...
....and adorned his final resting place with rose petals
I went today - you can see the snow
RIP Josh - loved and missed more than ever.