My dearest daughter,
You had a birthday this summer. It was your 8th birthday. I'm sorry this birthday letter is so late. I think about you everyday and have wondered exactly what is going to spill forth from my heart in this letter. I guess we are about to find out.
When I think of you, I think of your sister. When I am with your sister, I think of you. I suppose it is because she is my strongest point of reference. Zoë has passed you in age, but not in size. She's just a tiny little thing.
We miss you. Your brother and sister talk about you all the time. They tell your story to their teachers and friends, and they love looking at pictures and videos of you. Zoë points to your picture and says, "Lucy choked on a apple."
I don't know how much they really understand. But I know they understand that you are part of our family. You are part of our prayers. You are part of our conversations and plans and part of our heart.
Your daddy and I were sitting in church earlier today and glanced over at your brother and sister. Believe it or not, they were sitting quietly, holding hymn books and trying to sing along in Spanish. Zoë sat closest to us, then Peter, then...You. No, we didn't see you sitting there, but it is what we wanted. They were stacked up so nice and neat on the bench-- shortest little red head, shorter Peter with his brown hipster haircut, then a spot just above his head and shoulders where your blonde would fit perfectly.
Your cousins, Jack and Thacker, closest in age to you (along with Luke earlier in the Spring) were baptized this week. I still can't believe I would have such a big girl. Is it fun for you to watch your family growing up? I don't know how much you get to see or be around for, so I'll fill you in on a few things:
Zoë is so darling it hurts. She loves to dance and sing and walks around saying, "I be in a show, OK?" Peter is doing excellent in school as well as his music lessons. He can read sheet music, play chords, knows his notes and his intervals too! It's so exciting! Daddy is still hoping to find a new job. Will you comfort him, Lucy? He's really down. Is there anything you can do to help him find a different job? A job where he will be happier and able to provide more? I don't know how things work on the other side...but try to pull some strings, OK?
I'm busy performing in my show, taking care of the kids and the house, and trying to balance everything. I have come to accept that you died. I have come to accept the horrible tragedy that happened. But as your brother and sister grow, I realize I will have to someday accept the fact that they are missing out on an incredible older sibling. It is a whole new element to my grief.
We celebrated your birthday this year by taking pillow cases to Primary Children's Hospital. We went to your grave and had a picnic. We love you. So many people love you. So many people suffer greatly everyday. You have taught be how to be more aware and tender toward that suffering.
I love you, dear daughter. Forever and ever. I've said it before, but you make me much less afraid of growing older. I have something so incredible to look forward to.
Big hugs and kisses from all of us,