Hi, everyone. Just a little change for the week. I invited my friend Polina to write a letter, and so today’s post is written by her. She and her husband Joel lost their son Lev Ryan, affectionately known as Lentil. Like Joanna, Lentil entered the world silently in December 2014 at 33w3d. Bill and I met Polina and Joel at our MIS support group. Without further ado, here is Polina’s letter to Lentil.
Two months ago your Daddy and I went to see Scott Bradley and Postmodern Jukebox (PMJ) in concert. Back in September, your Dad introduced me to this band on YouTube. They take modern pop-music and turn it into more classic music styles (jazz, blues, 20’s, 30’s, 40’s styles, and many more). I remember that was the week when we read that you could hear us, hear music and different beats and we should play music for you. When your Dad started playing their songs, you liked it so much that we could feel you kicking and enjoying it. We played them for you several times, and you definitely were very fond of PMJ since you always let us know by kicking with the music. Last November, a few weeks before we lost you, I went to see “Fiddler on the Roof” and I felt you inside bopping along with the music. I came home and told your Dad that you are going to love live theater and have a good musical ear just like I do.
It was very good to see your Dad having a great time and enjoying the concert so much. I loved hearing him laugh when he would recognize the song that the PMJ was about to play. I haven’t seen your Daddy so happy in a long while. I felt happy in that moment as well, there was truly phenomenal singing and dancing. However, after we left the concert, we felt really sad and missed you even more. The last time we heard this band, there were 3 of us, and you enjoyed the music as much as we did.
Our little boy, today is exactly one year since we found out that you were a boy. I asked the nurse to place the paper with your gender into an envelope and seal it, as I wanted to find out at the same time as your Dad. We opened the envelope at the same restaurant where we had our first date. Then we called our parents to share the news with them. It was a very special moment – one I will never forget. We were so looking forward to meeting you, and all we wanted was for you to be healthy and happy.
We miss you every moment of every day, and when there is a time when we don’t think about you, the thoughts of you come to us with even more intensity. We talk about you all the time; what we would be doing with you being 6 months old right now, what your milestones would be now, where would we travel with you…
I often get so angry that we won’t get to experience all the things with you. We’ll never see your first smile, never see your first step, never see you run in our new house which seems very empty and sad right now, and we’ll miss so many other firsts that we were robbed of. Most of all, I get so sad thinking that YOU won’t get to experience those things.
Lentil, of course, is your nickname. Your Dad was the one who came up with it. When we just found out that I was pregnant with you, I found an app that tells you about what size the baby is at any given time of the pregnancy. At that time, it said that the baby is the size of lentil, so Daddy started calling you Lentil. Our friends said that nobody will call you by your actual name after you are born and everyone would still call you Lentil. I wish it was the biggest of our problems right now. Lev Ryan is the name you were going to have, after my Grandfather Lev and your Dad’s Grandmother Ruth. I always knew if I was going to have a boy, he would be named after my beloved Grandfather. It makes me sadder knowing that you are not here to honor their names and share all the love that was waiting for you from us and all of our families and friends. Who am I kidding, if someone told me to call you the weirdest name imaginable, but that you would be born healthy and happy, I would have done it… and, of course, later faced the consequences from you. ☺
We love you and miss you so much,
Your Mom and Dad