He would have turned 7 on Wednesday and should be starting 2nd grade right now. This also happens to be the first full week of kindergarten for his brother and sister. The progress Penelope and Isaak have made since their far too early birth still amazes us almost daily. We’ve taken great heart in each milestone they have reached: crawling, walking, talking, running, preschool and now, kindergarten.
This anniversary seems to be more difficult for us than any since the first. Penny and Isaak just made a big jump into the real world and achieved another milestone that Ollie never can.
Day to day, we don’t (can't) focus on it much as we stay so busy with Penny and Isaak, and they deserve our full attention...but it’s never far from the back of our minds. We try so hard to celebrate their lives and their milestones while also quietly grieving the loss of a little boy and his future that will never be.
The twins understand the basic concept of having had a brother, but they can’t quite wrap their heads around the fact that he will always be a baby. A few months ago, Penny asked “Mommy - Is Ollie real?”
What do you say to that?
To Penny and Isaak, he is a name and a bunch of pictures. Both kids know that it makes people cry sometimes to talk about him but aren't sure what it all really means.
Life is a journey and ours has had its challenges…maybe more than our fair share if I’m honest. We've been blessed to share the journey with wonderful friends and wonderful family members. We have met great new people and build closer bonds with many we already knew, but given a chance, we’d trade that and take a healthy, SMA-free Ollie back in a heartbeat.
Our long, strange, trip will continue with two smiling kids by our side and flashes of butterflies and dragonflies in unexpected places to remind us of a little boy with big blue eyes and a mischievous grin that left a great big hole in our heart.
We miss you Jakob Oliver Mastin.
August 5, 2008 – August 3, 2009