My relationship to Silas has been changing.  Gathering our friends and family around and planting a tree for him, speaking about him, expressing our loss and grief formally, in front of everyone, it seems to have helped me.

I’m still gut-wrenchingly sad, but there just might be a glimmer of calm worming its way into my soul.

It could just be a defense mechanism, though.  Like the speck of sand in an oyster, I’m finding ways to surround and smooth over the rough pain of his absence.  I don’t know if this feeling will last, if there is a brutal plunge ahead, or if I am on my way to some sort of peace or acceptance, but I know I am changing.  For now, this calm is probably the result of exhausted resignation.

I can’t have him back.  He’s gone, that’s it.  There are no do-overs or second chances.

I’ve been living with this fact for 8 months now and I’m just completely fucking exhausted by the daily wrestling match between what I want and what I have.  So I’m trying to stop that internal battle and simply resign myself to the facts at hand.

Nothing can change what happened to him, to us, to our lives, so I have to find a way to live with it.  In the car when I blast music and blast down the highway, I twist and turn these thoughts like hideous alien gems, and I try to discern their facets and depths.

By staring at them long enough, I begin to pass through my sadness, into a realm where sadness is inherent in all the bits and pieces of reality itself, and that makes all the little good things shocking and bright.  I have been trying to live in the World I used to know, and every day I’ve been devastated to find myself flattened by tragedy anew with each awful dawn.

But flip it around, and my loss and grief become the unsurprising parts and everything else that is *not* sucktacular is the reward for simply getting up;  for allowing love to flow between us we still have each other;  for allowing for the possibility that there are still some beautiful sparkles faintly glowing amidst our shattered landscape we still find laughter and music and moments of happiness.  That any of that is still possible is what sometimes surprises me most of all.

I change and grow and re-examine myself and my thoughts every single day.  I reevaluate what I want and what I need once it becomes clear what I can actually hope to achieve, in any given instance.  With life and work I am constantly reworking plans to better fit the changing circumstances and facts at hand.

That I will never have Silas in my arms is something that will never change, though.  I will not see him grow.  I will never know him as a person, as my son, as a friend and peer in later years.

I can probably fix any screwed up relationship or misunderstanding from any point in my life.  I can find the cash to get my car repaired.  I can try again at nearly anything I have failed.  But I cannot change what happened on September 25, 2008.

He was here and then he was gone and the maelstrom of that event has blown me utterly off course.  And that is what he is becoming for me:  a force of nature.  For me, Silas has become a Law of the World.  Like gravity, like light’s speed, like fusion at the core of our nearby star, Silas is immutable, unchanging, unknowable.

I sort of ‘get’ what’s going on in the Sun to create that immense furnace of energy.  But I really don’t comprehend it in a true, literal sense.  I know what I’ve been told:  that hydrogen and helium are combining because of enormous pressure and temperature.  Pressure pushes those atoms together and even though they don’t really want to get close, they don’t have a choice.  When that non-choice is forced upon them, they are crushed together and break open, and immense quantities of energy are released.  I ‘get’ all that, but I don’t know it.  I can’t see the atoms combining one by one.  It is beyond my ken, just like Silas is now.

So his death sits there in the center of my being, and it just… is.  I can’t reason with it.  I can’t fix it.  No amount of tears or rage or depression can do a thing to dislodge that Absolute Fact and so the only reasonable response I’ve been able to summon is this:

It is up to me to change in order to incorporate this Law of Silas into my life.

Yes, he is our son.  Yes, he was a tiny, beautiful perfect little boy.  Yes he was the vessel of our hopes and dreams, the Everything we had staked our Everything Else to.  And with him gone, the Everything Else came untethered and blew away even before we knew it was happening.

In his death, he has been transformed.  He has become a force that acts on my soul and on my heart, but just like the wind, that force never changes.  Every day when I relive his birth and death in my mind, it is always the same.  But every time I do it, I am changed by increments etched with pain.

The trees planted for him, here in New Haven, up in New Hampshire and everywhere else in the World, it feels perfect and right.  Their slow growth and leafy branches are the correct expression of what he has become for me.  I can go to his trees and sit under his boughs and listen to wind softly whisper to me in a language I cannot understand with my mind, but it is one I already know in my heart and in my soul.

The sun warms my skin and then the breeze blows me cool.  The Earth spins, holding me close.  Missing my son empties me from within, forcing me to find Everything Else to put back in.

He is light speed.  He is fission and fusion.  He is the internal combustion that propels me forward through life.  He is the love I can still find to share with my wife and my friends and my family all around.

He will never change, and I cannot do anything else.

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