Today Oscar would have been 18 months old and instead we buried him. Funnily enough it is ten o’clock at night and that’s the first time I had remembered his 18 month birthday today. It’s been a very draining day but it went how we wanted it to go. The sun was shining, it was quiet and peaceful, we carried Oscar’s coffin to the grave ourselves. As DC puts it, at least we are now sleeping under the same sky.
We tried to prepare ourselves as best we could for today. David recalled that early on we knew we wanted him in the village so we could think of today as bringing him home. I don’t know how I feel about that yet. I didn’t know if it would feel worse having him under the ground in the churchyard. I was worried that it would be harder to leave the village. Having said that we collected Holly from camp today and I didn’t give leaving the village to do that a second thought. I was also scared that the first time it rains I will want to race down there with a brolly or the first time there is a frost I’ll worry that he is cold. I’m not sure if that is how it will be though.
Although today is one that is significant actually in some ways, for David and I, it was just another day. No worse than any other. We can’t grieve more than we are already grieving. So we just got through the day together. And we really get strength from each other on days like today.
Getting through this week has been tough. On Sunday we finalised the Order of Service and on Monday we collected a number of items that we wanted to include in his coffin with him. Choosing the outfit from his bedroom was very upsetting. We gave him some photographs and a card from Holly too. We had wondered how to include something from Hols but when she came home on the same day with a card that she had made for Oscar we knew what that was meant to be for. We also wrote him a letter. We wrote about the boy that we already knew, about how special the relationship he and his sister had, and we wrote about the man we had imagined he would become. We made our commitments to him that his life would not be in vain and that we would keep Oscar Cole known. The hardest thing about writing the letter was stopping because we did not want the conversation to end.