|Early Steven and his car noises.|
I have boxes of pictures from the pre-digital age, and since I took the leap to the use of a smartphone...well, I'm a hoarder of images.
I was gently teased over the weekend about being Steven's personal photographer. It's true! Video too.Click here to see the best day ever...
Steven takes such joy in using the images we capture to relive all his happy times. He pores over his collection of joys like a giggly miser. He wants to make sure his friends and family get to see ALL of his adventures!
It would be easy for me to just take that at face value and not dig any deeper.
I also have a need to share him. I see what he does to people, how his joy spreads, and how he takes over a room. I've been told time and again "I wish we could bottle that laugh."
I do too.
I feel the same kind of compulsion to share him as he does to show off to his friends near and far, to leave a wide and loud trail of laughter and that smile.
I'm just a little afraid.
My truth is in the images I've deleted, the ones I wish I could delete from my mind altogether. Frozen images of silence, tubes, machines, wires...stillness.
This is one I kept, after he was stronger than the machine that kept him breathing, when it was safe again. I was free of the ache I felt going home to an empty apartment, dropping in a heap on his rumpled bed to find some sort of reassurance he was coming home to it. To think of the walls NOT echoing with that laugh, a hundred fart jokes, and the same six tv shows sending him off to sleep each night was just more than I could take without breaking down.
As a friend said, "The world needs Steven in it."
When you lose someone, you forget how they sound.
With hope and optimism, he's going to outlive us all. Since birth, Steven has been a masters-level defier of odds and all-around miracle man.
I'm still going to bottle that laugh all I can.
The world will always have Steven in it.