As I contemplate the future without Hudson, the multiple layers of our loss are just astounding. One of the saddest and most important ones is the giant hole that will always be present in our family for as long as we live. When we have another child, there will be no Hudson to stare in awe and confusion at the new baby that has come into her life, no Hudson always trying to “help” me take care of the baby, no Hudson to keep me laughing and engaged through those first very isolating months of mothering an infant. If we have three more kids, no matter where we go or what we do, I will always think that there should be six of us, not five. As our kids grow up, their big sister will not be there to show them how to do things or help them out in a jam. Whenever we take a family photo, there will always be not only a metaphorical hole, but an actual hole where she should be sitting with us. At every major milestone, like starting kindergarten, graduating from high school, going off to college, getting married, having children of their own, I will always, always wonder what Hudson would have been like at those stages. Would we have been friends or would she have hated me? Would she have a singing voice or not be able to carry a tune at all? Would she be an athlete or a bookworm, or both? And it brings me to tears every time I realize again that I will never know.
This is just such an incredibly difficult future to face. As real and raw as the pain still is now, thinking about these holes in our future breaks me even more. And it kills me to know that forever and ever, our lives and our family will be incomplete. Every joyful moment will always be either happy-sad or sad-happy, depending on what the dominant feeling is. And no matter how hard we try (and we will), our kids will never really know how wonderful their sister was and how special she would have been to them.
Since Hudson died, I have understood for the first time why people would go see psychics to try to communicate with their loved ones. I still don’t think I would do it (although I’m less sure about that possibility than I was before), but I truly understand the urge. When faced with the unspeakable reality that I will never see Hudson again (at least not in earthly form, and as you know, I’m totally unclear about any prospect beyond that), the idea of somehow being able to communicate with her is a pretty tempting one. I read in one of my grief books that many bereaved parents have turned to the “paranormal” in their grief, and almost without exception, they come away from the experience comforted. My skepticism says they are comforted because they want to be comforted and that they hear what they want to hear, whether real or not, but still… the possibility is not without appeal. I’ve already allowed myself to simply be comforted by anything that feels comforting, like a star in the sky or a dandelion in the yard, without regard to whether I think those things are “really” Hudson being present with me. Why should seeing a psychic be any different? (Well, with the exception that if you really are a skeptic, you don’t necessarily want to fork your money over to people who take advantage of the bereaved at their most vulnerable.)
I doubt I would ever seriously entertain going to see a psychic. But then again, never in a million years did I think I would ever consider getting a tattoo, and yet here I am, pondering daily where I might put a small hieroglyphic turtle that would help me feel like Hudson is always with me. I guess I’m just saying that I get it. When death rips this enormous hole in the fabric of your life, a hole that will never disappear no matter how much you try to fill it, I get that you might consider a lot of things that you might never have considered before in your desperate attempts to do so.
I just miss my girl so very much.