July 19, 2017: Wedding Day!

Dear Carter,

Today, Daddy and I got married! Remember the words we said when you were in the hospital bed, while we held your hands and promised to love each other, and to love you, forever? While the machine breathed for you and the monitors showed us that your brain was too injured to work anymore? We said those words (and we meant them) that day because we knew you wouldn’t be with us for much longer and we wanted to show you that we stand united and that we would use your short, sweet life and far-too-soon death to make us and our relationship and our family stronger.
But. In order for our marriage to be recognized by the state and for it to be legal, we needed a license, so went to get that last week. And today, we went back to the hospital where you were born and where you died, to the tiny, beautiful chapel with its colorful stained glass window. We took your sister and brother with us, and we met a few of the wonderful palliative care team members that took such tender care of our family while our world fell apart. We stood together as a family and said our vows again.

I was nervous to go back to the hospital, so worried that I would crumble under the weight of the memories of both your birth and your death. But we felt you with us, surrounding us with your love, wrapping us in peace and happiness. And we made a happy memory there. A happy ending to the story of the hospital.

Marrying your dad is one of my life’s greatest blessings. Taking his name (and yours) will be a badge of honor for me and cement our legacy as a family. We love you so much, baby boy. We miss you so much. While our family will never feel complete without you here, we want you to know that today we became an official, legal family and we honor your life in doing so. Thank you for this precious gift.

I kiss you.

Love you forever,

Mommy\

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