12 seconds.

January 31, 2013

I'm trying to pull myself together as I type this.  Trying to wipe the tears away from my eyes so I can see the screen clearly.

I heard Richard laugh tonight.  Last night I said I was missing his laugh, and tonight I heard it.  I heard him laugh!

I try to replay it in my mind a lot, but eventually it gets hard to hold on to.  It gets hard to imagine it as real.  Tonight, for whatever reason, I was scrolling through all the pictures in my phone.  Looking at numerous pictures of my dog and my {fat} cat, with pictures of Rich and I scattered amongst them.  And there it was.  A video.  A video of he and I posing for a picture and then finally realizing my phone was on the recording feature instead of the camera.  A 12 second video.  12 seconds of my beautiful boy alive.

And he was laughing!  It was the Saturday before Christmas.  We were at Santa's Village with my family and we were posing for a picture in the fake snow.  As we took our spots and smiled, snow flew into Richard's nose.  This happened as soon as my mom hit the button to take the picture, but instead {thank the sweet Lord} ended up recording a video.  As she hit record, he started to laugh.  A good, solid, deep Richard laugh.  He wipes at his nose and you see us assume our positions again, smiling intently and starting to wonder what is taking so long.  Then you hear my sister-in-law say, "Oh you're recording!"  We laugh, I tuck my face into his shoulder as if I am embarrassed and he says, "Ha!  You got me picking my nose!"

12 seconds.  I've been crying ever since I discovered it.  It makes me happy, sad, nostalgic and heartbroken all at once.  It makes me acutely aware of the hole that's been left in my heart.  But how grateful am I for that short, sweet video.  Of Richard alive and happy.

I am not comfortable sharing it with the blogger world yet.  I'd like to keep it as a private gift for now.  I'd like to show it to his mom and sister if they want to see it.  Maybe someday I'll post it.  But until then - I'll post a picture of that laugh.  In the meantime...can someone bring me a tissue?