Over the past few months things haven’t been very happy around here. I wish you were a little older so you could understand things, but I’m glad that you are not. I do know that although you can not process this complex change, you do see our tears. Lots of them. And you hear our agony. You probably also know that I haven’t been the best dad to you recently—I just haven’t been present for you. I’ve been so caught up in trying to figure all this out and no excuse in the world can make it ok. I’m so sorry. I know you are hurting, too. I promise to bring you back close to me, and to be here for you, and to show you all the love I have for you. Please don’t get too upset if I lapse from time to time. I can be speaking directly into someone’s face and suddenly my entire conscious thought is shifted to your brother. I still might be moving my lips but I have no idea what I’m saying. Again, no excuses, but you need some insight into my state of mind.
Your brother is so very sick. It’s really difficult to believe right now as you chase each other around the street, explore your world together, fight, and love. You two are so good together. You share such a thick bond. It is what your mom always wanted—she never wanted Parker to be alone when he grew old. She really hammered the importance of shared aging into me. I didn’t need to be convinced, I love my siblings dearly, but I did have to agree to having another beautiful child. And I am still so happy that it was you.
When you were born you should have seen the look on Parker’s face. We actually have a picture of it that we adore. It captures this little boy on a hospital bed, curled up tight in a ball, staring off passed us to ignore the obvious. He wanted nothing to do with you. Those first few months were touch-and-go. Parker tried so hard to accept you, and he did. He never wanted to touch you too much, but he knew you belonged in the family (his repeated requests to have you returned went unanswered—he probably just gave up).
I think what came next was driven from mutual understanding and love. You started learning from your Parkoo. Not just one or two tricks—you were studying his every move and sound. You fixated on him as he ran around. And as you have grown with him, you continue to place him in the center of your world. I can’t count how many mornings I’ve entered your room and your very first words are, “where’s my Parkoo?”. He fills a piece of you that neither myself nor your mom can. And I love that. And I love you.
The future is not going to be easy for us, my sweet girly. There will be a lot more confusing things coming our way. Most likely some erratic schedules and travel, a lot of attention on your brother and probably some big strange words and lots of letters strung together. But please know that you are always on my mind. Always. You are the world to me, and the balance you bring is so important, especially now. You’re ability to make the three of us laugh with your funny faces and silly actions is priceless. I hope you never lose that.
May your dreams right now be sweet ones. I will see you in the morning—and if your Parkoo isn’t yet awake, we can go downstairs and eat breakfast together, and watch your silly shows, ok?