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It's nighttime again... and I'm scared of the silence and lack of distraction that comes with the night. My girls are sleeping peacefully... my mom dozed off watching The Holiday, so it's just me and my thoughts again.

Last night was horrible. I've battled anxiety and nightmares for years, since Brayden was born in fact. I was on medication, in therapy, and finally about 4 months ago was able to start trying to wean off of medication and have been fine without it since Brayden's PICU stay in August. My therapist finally made me realize that I couldn't change the inevitable, that someday it would happen, but that I couldn't keep dwelling on it so much that it affected my living. She was right...

Those nightmares, they're back... only this time they're real. I'm not waking up in a panic and able to go and cuddle and kiss on my sweet baby man. He's not in bed. He's not cuddled next to me while daddy is away. They carried him away on Thursday, away from his mommy, forever. There is no waking up from the nightmare... I have to live through it.

I believe in heaven... or I want to. I thought I did. Now all I can feel is that Brayden is alone, like they came and took him away from me and I cannot find him. I feel like he is alone and scared, but try to remind myself the feeling I had when I was saying goodbye to his shell... I didn't feel like it was him anymore, even the girls said it wasn't Brayden anymore. It was his body, but it wasn't him. But where he is, I do not know. I can't find comfort in knowing that he is whole and playing with his angel buddies... that our loved ones that have gone before him were waiting to wisk him away, to run through the pearly gates on his legs that work. 

Today I stayed busy... I wanted to stay at home in my pajamas and cry all day, but I can't. My girls need me to keep them going as much as I need them to keep me going. Bella needed to pick up her new viola, at the music store we just took Brayden to days ago... where we played with the bells and the xylophone and he lit up and smiled as his sister showed him a small, blue electric guitar that we told him he could rock out with daddy on. I couldn't breathe in that store, but I made it out and took care of business. I found some comfort in the fact that no one knew me there, no one knew that a piece of my heart had been ripped out of my chest and will never be replaced... 

Not one second went by that I wasn't replaying Thursday through my head... that horrible 15th of November that will forever be horrible. It used to just be a day, now its THE day and I'll have to look forward to the dread it brings for the rest of my life on earth. If Thursday wasn't replaying, my thoughts were on what I had to do for Brayden, as I silently reminded myself that he doesn't need me anymore... and I am filled with complete worthlessness again, because he needed me for everything and now nothing. Most people have lost a loved one in there life, they know the pain... imagine the pain of losing someone who was 100% dependent on you for every piece of their day from morning through night. It leaves a whole like no other.

I see these pictures, the millions of smiley faced pictures I have of him and try to replace the horrible last images I have of him in my living room floor... I only hope that I am able to replace those images forever in my mind, because they hurt so much. Saying "hurt" doesn't even begin to describe what it feels like... 

And then theres the emptiness that looms... not only because I lost my best little friend but because I don't belong anywhere. The special needs groups I connected with here I don't feel like I belong with. I was going to participate in volunteering with the Special Education parent action committee with the school district and now don't qualify, likely. I have my hydran family & love them all so very much, but feel out of place there now as well. Even in the angel family groups I am the newbie and feel out of place. My identity was Brayden's mommy, founder of Global Hydranencephaly Foundation... so strong, so motivated, such an "amazing" person... none of which I feel, I'm just broken now. I'm Brayden's mommy forever, but never again will I get to introduce someone to my 'lil man who would always greet with a smile... 

Of course, the foundation will live forever... that's why I created it, because I knew that Brayden wouldn't live forever and I wanted his memory and name to go on. And though I can't personally introduce another individual to Brayden, be sure that everyone I ever know on this planet will know Brayden... they'll know his smile, his determination, his determination, and love of life. They'll know that he wasn't here suffering with hydranencephaly, that he defied all odds and lived with it. That the light he emited was bright enough to touch those whom he had never even met...

But it still hurts so much and I'm still waiting the wakeup from the nightmare... how did this happen? why? I don't know why these questions won't go away... I miss my baby man so, so much.