It’s the new year and we should be all fired up, filled with fresh enthusiasm. It is a time of new beginnings and fresh starts. Yet here I am struggling to write. This is no writers bloc, nor is it burn out. It is once again the failure of my fingers to co operate.
Most days I have a multitude of topics I would wish to write about. Just today I almost finished a post called ‘be careful what you wish for’, about motherhood and our children moving on. However when it came to polishing and finishing it properly, my fingers stopped, just as they have been doing most days since the weekend.
For despite so many ideas flying around in my head, my heart is not in them. They seem superficial, and empty. Alongside those ideas is an ever present thought. This week is Daniels birthday. He would be 15.
It’s hard to believe the young boy we said goodbye to November 2013 would be fifteen. He would have grown. His voice would have broken. I wonder would his hair still be as blonde? Would he have continued to be a divil? I imagine he would still be the boy everyone wanted to hang out with. The pupil who broke and yet captured every teachers heart. The bane of his mothers life,in the best possible way, and the sports mad son every father would dream of.
Speaking with his Mom, aunt and god mother recently we all discovered that we look for him everywhere. Every fifteen year old boy is now Daniel. We look at them in groups and see him in the middle of them. We watch a solitary figure walk up the road, wearing his school blazer, school bag over his shoulder and we wonder is he fifteen? Would Danny be that height? We see teams playing soccer on the soccer pitch and we look to see if we can see a Daniel there. When we don’t his loss strikes once more, as if we had previously forgotten it, although of course we never did.
Today we went for a walk, his aunt and I, and we struggled to believe that he has not been here in over a year. His aunt said that she still expects someday soon to wake up and realise it was all a dream. Even after over a year it is as if we got the news of his leukemia only yesterday, and that he is still in Crumlin. Where did the year go?
Daniel affected so many in his short life. On Christmas morning a big group of young friends of his, braved the cold to swim in aid of the home care nurses who came to his home to give him his Chemo. Cork is the only county in Ireland with such a service, and those nurses were the difference between Daniel being at home or in hospital. Knowing Dan didn’t live makes those extra days at home very special. In truth though, the big gang of close to 100 people who gathered that day, would have done so for no other reason but to celebrate Daniels life, and collectively think of him. As they will do on Sunday when the cheque for the money raised will be handed over to the Mercy Hospital. a day after Daniels fifteenth birthday.
So forgive me my silence. I will be back, but it looks like I will have to spend a little time thinking of young Daniel, and wishing him a happy birthday. We know he will be fifteen, a time in his life we imagine he would have hugely enjoyed, but for many of us he will forever be the thirteen year old boy, who battled so bravely for as long as he could. The mad, lively, fun loving boy who left his life way too soon, and who is still terribly missed most especially by his parents, siblings, godparents and friends.
This week I am trying to write, but Daniel just wont let me. Maybe tomorrow.