It has been a year since we last saw your beautiful smile...
It's been a year of such unbearable pain. How lonely our lives have been without you Peter. We've shed so many tears. We miss you more than words can say. We can't help but to question WHY? You were everything two parents could have ever asked for. You brought us such joy and happiness...now we have nothing but broken hearts. We will never see Peter walk across stage to receive his diploma, never fulfill his life long dream of becoming a firefighter and never get married and have children of his own. Peter your dreams, were our dreams.
Not a day goes by Peter that we don't think of you. Peter you are my first thought of the day and the last at night...and so many times in between.
It was winter that we last touched your face...saw your smile...and heard your laughter.
It doesn't seem like a year... to us it feels like yesterday. The days have all seemed the same to us. The ache in our hearts seems to worsen as days go on. I still wait for the door to open and hear him say, "Hi Mom" I'm home. I still look for Pete everywhere I go. I listen for him to pull in the driveway with his Bronco.
Each morning when I take my shower I pick up his Nautica aftershave and smell it. That is how I start my day. I sit at the table having coffee and look at his picture hanging on the wall. I look to my left and can still see him sitting there. Your room is still the way you left it Pete. Your sneakers at the edge of your bed, your lacrosse stick and gloves lean against the wall, your favorite gray hooded sweatshirt hanging on your hook and your toothbrush in its holder. All such painful reminders that you are not home with us. Your presence we feel everywhere.
We try really hard to be normal, but we really don't know what normal is anymore. We get up every day, get dressed and go to work. We have even smiled and laughed. Not like we used to, but we do smile. Sometimes I feel like I am living with two different faces. Sometimes, I pretend that he is still here...I mean really still here, and that's how I get through another day. What ever it takes to get through a day. I was not given a handbook when this happen to our family, so I do what I think is right. Whether people like it or not that is how I have to live my days.
People say that, "You have to get on with your lives". Those people do not understand. They couldn't, or they wouldn't even think it. We have gotten on with our lives...we get up every day, we do what we have to do to survive. I guess that's getting on with our lives. That's about as normal as it gets. Every minute there is still pain, loneliness and emptiness in our hearts. There is a huge void in our lives that will never go away, all reminders that Pete is not with us.
I go to visit him every day and talk to him there, always making sure there are flowers or some trinkets for him...I look at the etchings on his stone...smile, remembering all of the sweet memories Peter has left us...walk away and cry. Never saying Goodbye...always saying... see you tomorrow Peter.
My husband Vinny and daughter Lory have been my strength. Without them life has no meaning. We laugh together as we remember all the wonderful memories that Peter has left us...and cry for not being able to have those times ever again. My husband takes me to the grocery store because he knows I don't like to go alone. I don't like to shop anymore, because all I see are things I want to buy for Pete, or that reminds me of Pete. The snack isle with the pretzels (Pete's favorite) is the hardest. A few times I have left my cart there filled with groceries. He truly understands...without saying a word. Without him, I could have never survived this far. Thinking of starting another day with out Peter was too overwhelming. He understands my tears, and I understand his. We are broken hearted parents going through the motions of life until we are reunited with our son.
When this terrible tragedy happened, we learned a lot about family and friends. Without them I don't know where we would be today. They go out of there way to make sure that they call at least a few times a week and stop by our house just as often as they can. They are trying to keep us busy and for that we thank them from the bottom of our hearts.
The holidays and birthdays are so difficult to celebrate. Things are so very different now. Christmas and birthdays used to the biggest holidays in our house. I can still hear Pete's voice, the last Christmas that he was with us. So happy that Santa brought him his stereo system for his Bronco.
Peter celebrated his 18th birthday in heaven; his friends did not forget him that day. Bringing him flowers, balloons and notes of Love. Pete's Dad, sister Lory and I tied packets of "Forget-me-not" seeds to balloons and released them for Pete. We each placed a single red rose to show the love that we have for Pete.
As a Mom I am suffering from an overwhelming need to be needed. Pete always needed me, but my daughter needs me too. She is growing up, and will be off to college in a few years. That is when the need to be a Mom is going to be the toughest. My purpose on this earth was to be a Mom, the greatest joy any women could ever experience. I am a Mom and will always be to both Pete and Lory. All the shattered dreams will not shatter my love for my son or daughter.
I pray to God every day to give us the strength to get through each and every day. We cry from the inside out, and our hearts are heavy. When our Peter left, we felt an instant pain in our hearts. A pain that will never go away. It is a constant reminder of all that we have lost. We have lost a part of our being...a very big part of our lives. We will never let Peter go. We will talk about him, we will continue to keep his memory alive, we will always speak his name, and search for him where ever we go. I find myself staring in a crowd wondering if he is there amongst them. I will always think of him every morning ...noon... and night.
Peter is special. He is our son, and we love him with all of our heart. We will Love him forever... We love him for eternity.
For most of you it probably seems like a year is a long time... but for us it was just like yesterday.
We Miss You "Pete"
Dad, Mom & Lory