We have had a wonderful summer with the boy. I am back at work now, and our lives are accelerating back towards warp speed. In between, we try to get to the farm. We have had Alden to the house three times now, and plan to be up frequently this fall. He is a happy baby, and he really loves the farm - he sleeps better, smiles wider, and seems more peaceful. He's probably just picking up vibes from his Mom and Dad.
Our relationship with our grief and with Baker has really changed, and I don't yet have the tools at hand to describe the difference. We are experiencing another turn of the Earth without Baker, but this time we are joined by his pudgy little brother who has soothed us.
I think about Baker all the time, still, and wonder what Alden's relationship to his missing brother will be. I wish they could be together in the flesh, but I know that can never be.
More even than Baker's grave, I think the farm will be Alden's link to his brother. The farm represents a time in our lives, and a need unmet, and a hope for the future. We have already started weaving Alden into that narrative.
In the spring, my siblings wanted to give us a bush or a tree to commemorate Baker's birthday at the farm. Others had done that for us, and two tree saplings are planted hopefully along the edge of the woods.
I encouraged my family to let some time pass for us to lay out a blueberry patch that over time would grow and thrive and extract nutrients from the soil to nourish our bodies and souls.
This past weekend, with Baker's little brother looking on, sleeping, crying, grunting, smiling, I laid out the two beds of the patch, and prepared the site. Baker's blueberry patch will be planted in the spring, perhaps with aunts and uncles and cousins there with shovels and gloves. This place, and this food, will be one of the connections for Alden.