Wednesday, May 11, 2011

My Heart Breaks Just a Little ....

.... every time I see how much our children look like (or act like) Jim.

The above picture is of our youngest, Son #3 and his prom date this past weekend.
I was not here to witness the event (he's only a sophomore so it wasn't THE prom).
I was in Alaska, taking care of my brother who had surgery while I was there.

This young lady's mom sent me the picture.
I smiled at it and then showed it to my brother.
He looked at it, then did a double take.
And looked at it again.
And then said, "Oh my gosh!  I thought it was Jim!"

I had not looked at it closely.
But at his words, I looked again.
And saw it.
And my heart broke .... just a little.

I love to hear those words, "He/She looks so much like Jim." or "He/She reminds me of Jim."
But ..... at the same time .... they cut my heart.
(Yes, I guess this is much like last week's post .... "A Double Edged Sword")

As I looked at the face of Son #3 in that picture, I had to bow my head a little .... and carefully wipe away the tears.  I didn't want my brother to see them.  I didn't want him to think that he had hurt me.
Because he hadn't.
The "hurt" had already been done.
Back at the end of 2007.
But I realize that my broken heart may never really fully heal.
Because of the 6 reminders that I have of Jim.

The 6 very special and wonderful reminders.
Three girls.
Followed by three boys.
They are 6 very important reasons for me still being here.

They each carry so much of Jim in them.
And on them.

Seeing them, especially in pictures ..... makes my heart swell with love, pride and gratefulness.

And yet .... seeing them .... seeing him in them ..... breaks my heart .... just a little.


  1. I can relate to what you say, but not because my children resemble the physical. For me it is the the gestures, habits, jokes etc! And alos all of their milestones. I also think about what his grandchildren will look like and will I see him there. But even without my children's presence, I still feel that losing your partner just isn't something you get over, but something you learn to live with. It does get easier with time, but still can pack a punch when you least expect it! By the way, what a great picture!

  2. Thanks, Anon. I, too, see it in them in other ways. The way one walks like him, the way one gestures like him, the way another smiles like him .....
    Son #1 went to an interview with a man who had known Jim. During the interview he said to him, "I would've known you anywhere. It's not so much that you look like him, but your mannerisms, your walk, your words, your gestures .... they are very much like him." When Son #1 told me all of this we both agreed ..... that was a great compliment.

  3. Janine, what a wonderful post. Some have commented that my 23 yr. old son resembles his dad but I too see it more in the gestures, etc. I have heard my son respond to his girlfriend in much the same way, my husband would respond to me. The first time I heard my son say "yes darling" to his girlfriend, I could not believe my ears and could not stop the tears.

    Honestly, my heart breaks a lot more than just a little.....hugs to you for being so brave.

  4. thanks so much for this post Janine, I now understand what my father meant when he told me that sometimes it hurt him to look at me (I look remarkably similar to my mother) and that kind of hurt as well as made me proud to know that I looked like her ... but now I really "get" it ... and without the hurt. x

  5. So true. I have so many moments when I wish that, if nothing else, Austin could just sweep in and see one of our sons doing something that strikes me as being so much like their Dad. It makes me smile and cry at the same time. I also wondered the other day if I would see Austin in them so much if he were still here with us. Of course we'll never know.