How Can I Forget?
Walter Todd 
After you were gone, my brother said it was better if I forgot, but:

How can I forget the night before you came, when your mama told me she was in labor and the minutes we counted between the contractions, the night class I had to go to and how I bragged you were on your way?

How can I forget early Thursday morning, your mama awakening me to say the contractions were five minutes apart, us dressing your sister to take her to the babysitters, and how excited I was when they rolled your mama into the emergency room?

How can I forget the doctor saying he could not get a heartbeat and asking for another doctor, the nurse’s reassuring comment that they could not get your heartbeat because you were turned wrong, or the worried look that came over your mama’s face?

How can I forget the labor room nurse’s comment, “This doesn’t look good,” when she broke your mother’s water, the straight quiet line that came from the fetal heart monitor hooked to your little head, the numb feeling when the doctor said, “Let’s go out into the hallway,” and he said “From all indications, the baby is dead,” or the pain on your mama’s face when we told her the diagnosis?

How can I forget the phone calls to your aunt while they delivered you, the long minutes standing in the hallway waiting, the card the social worker held in her hand as she talked to me, which said, “STILLBORN”?

How can I forget your mama as they wheeled her out still unconscious, the doctor explaining that they tried, but you had been dead too long and that your mama was going to need a lot of support in the next few days?

How can I forget myself lying on the hospital bed crying, then your grandfather and uncle crying on the phone as we talked and prayed?

How can I forget the first time I saw you next to your mother and her comment “what a pretty baby,” or the second time I held you and my tears fell on your tiny feet, or the last time I saw you, in the morgue?

How can I forget crying in bed and your sister asking “What was that noise?” or the first time your mama and daddy cried in each other’s arms?

How can I forget you in your casket, how sweet your little hands looked, the three white roses we put over your hands – one from me, one from your mother, and one from your sister?

How can I forget picking up your casket and driving through the city to the airport with you on my lap, the flight to Mobile, and leaving you at the funeral home for the night?

How can I forget buying the plot of land at the foot of where my mother and father will be buried, the service and the flowers, the friends and relatives who were there?

How can I forget the autopsy report and the doctor saying “There is no indication for why this incident occurred,” or your mama’s look at me as a baby in the next room started to cry?

How can I forget returning to your grave after everyone had left, seeing the turtles in the nearby creek, and crying tears on the ground above you?

How can I forget ordering your gravestone, not visiting you for two months after your burial, or my tears falling on the little engraved girl on the headstone?

How can I forget all the diapers I won’t get to change, all the sleepless nights I will miss, or the joy of watching you grow that I won’t have?

I can’t forget you, Megan, for you will always be a part of this family’s life and I can’t wait to hold my little girl again in heaven.