That year, our son didn't smile. Rather, the corners of his mouth moved upwards but his eyes -- those sweet dark eyes so similar to mine -- there was no hiding the ache in those eyes.
I found a photo of him holding the happy place sketch I'd made for him; he's smiling, but his eyes tell me that he didn't see that happy place, not yet. I want to cry each time I see them, because I know that I'm the one that put that sadness in his sweet little heart.
That was three years ago, and it feels like a lifetime. I see him now, and hear his laugh. I see his eyes, still sweet but full of confidence and joy. Of hope. I see those eyes and count my blessings every day, that I have had the chance to spend this time with him.
We're moving on, as much as we can. This home, this house I feared to lose when I got sick, has been a lovely refuge. It has allowed the three of us to regroup and heal together, to homeschool our son this past year and a half until we found a school that suited his needs.
About a month ago we received notification that he was accepted into the program that he hoped to be part of, and will be starting middle school there in the fall. Its not far, not really -- but it does provide the necessary kick in the pants to get us to move. We've listed our home, and hope to find one a bit bigger close to the school.
No more being in a holding pattern, no more wait and see. Whatever comes our way we'll find a way to handle, but for now we have to live life to the fullest and chase our hopeful futures.
My sweet little man at 7 -- and today: