Ryan Mentock

An Incomprehensive Catalog of Things I've Made and Words I've Written.

A Letter to My Son: 4 Years Later

I miss you. I think about you a lot. I talk to you when nobody else is around so I don’t seem crazy. I see kids who would’ve been born around the same time as you and I imagine how you’d look and act and sound. You have the most beautiful eyes in my dreams. I think, maybe you’d be kind of like that kid, or dress the same way as that other kid.

We moved in to a new house in December. I finally had to move your things, but I saved them for last and still haven’t looked inside. I put your things away in another closet at the new house, still unopened. I’m not sure that was a good idea or not. I planned to open them for months before we moved and couldn’t do it when it came time. I don’t see how putting them in a closet is going to encourage me to open them. I want to.

My idea of you has become a collection of fake happy memories in the life I’ve imagined you would have had. I see other little kids who should be your age and think about you experiencing things yourself, so I have replaced my saddest thoughts of your actual life with made-up thoughts of what you could have been. I haven’t figured out if that is healthy or not, either, but my thoughts are happier. I know opening your things will break that wall down again, and I’m not ready for that yet. I’ll get there.

We moved because you had a second younger sister on the way. She was born in March and she is perfect and healthy and beautiful. She has bright blue eyes and laughs whenever her big sister jumps. She is always calm, very curious, and looks up to her big sister very much. One day, I’ll tell them both about you and they will be so proud of their big brother.

A friend made some wall art for your sisters and you. A nice custom name plate with all of your first and middle names. Yours is mostly yellow with a flower in the middle. I don’t know where I’m going to put them, but they will all be together somewhere.

I’ve decided to build a park for you. I have a lot of ideas, but I’m not sure what is possible yet. I hope to have some progress for you next year. Help me out, if you can.

I’m doing my best to take care of your mother and sisters, just like I promised. I hope you’re proud of me. I’m so proud of you.

I love you.