My pain is mutating.  It has been just over three months since Silas was born and passed away, and my new life is slowly coming into focus.  Day-to-day existence has become more bearable, but an unshakable melancholy has settled into my soul.

I feel an ache I cannot shake, but I do not try too hard.  That empty, painful place where Silas should be is all I have of him.  I suppose the goal is to fill that emptiness with love and goodness somehow, someday, but that time is far off.  For now I have to have that void tucked away into core of my being.

It just occurred to me that what I am feeling is essentially the complete and total opposite of being pregnant.  First off, I’m a man so pregnancy isn’t an option.  Second, there is no baby growing, no new being about to appear that I am waiting for.  I’m dismantling expectations and hopes instead of building them.

The event has occurred.  Silas was denied to us.  He cannot receive our kisses and cuddles and love, not here, not in that physical, satisfying way.  We love him, of course, but expressing it is extremely difficult and confusing.  To have our love for him completely wrapped and suffused by pain is terrible.

But now we do Terrible every day as a matter of course.  I need Terrible.  Terrible is where he is, what our love must go through in order to reach his sweet little face.  Terrible, terrible, terrible.  It’s like edible horror.  It’s terror you can feel inside you, a new layer that quivers and oozes between organs and skin.

But don’t worry!  I’m getting accustomed to it now and someday I intend to turn that Terrible into something useful.  I’m not sure what or how, but just knowing that this sensation exists, that other people can feel this way inside their own bodies and minds, that has to help me eventually.  For now I just try to bear it and I’m getting damn fucking good at it.

Some things are easy to do now.  I have no trouble demolishing a pint of ice cream.  If I could find a way to keep the container steady I would have a spoon in either hand.  It is also very simple to lay in bed wide awake with my eyes closed and my mind whirling as the gray winter light fills the room.  This past weekend up in New Hampshire I found pleasure and serenity in the necessary task of cooking a meal.  It was steak and lobsters for New Year’s Eve and it tasted just as good as it sounds.

I’m glad the New Year is here.  I know it is essentially just an arbitrary date that has no real bearing on our healing and our grief but it still feels good.  And I’ll take any good I can find anywhere, anyhow.

Lu’s arms around me is good.  Our tattoos are good in a terrible sorta way that fits perfectly.  Family is good.  Friends that call and write and stop by to bother us with love are good.  Somehow, some way we are still going to make our lives good.

And years from now, when we look back on this time in our life I have a feeling something else will appear that is good.  2008 will be good for us because for nine of those months, Silas was in our lives.  It was the only time we had with him and so we must hold those moments close in our hearts and let our love flow out to him and feel the Terrible melt away,