As most of you know from my statement in court, I have battled with how to answer the question of "How many kids do you have?" I have 3 ... but sometimes the explanation is too tough and 2 would be so much easier to say. When I took Elly for her 15 month checkup in the middle of August, we were not able to see Dr Watson (due to her broken foot) and had to see a nurse practitioner that did not know us. She started by asking if this was my first child to which I answered "No, she's my third." As she was going over things on a list with me, she asked if I had syrup of ipecac at home. I said no and she asked what the ages of my other children were, stating I may need it for them also. I responded by saying, "Mady is 8." She looked at me puzzled and said "I thought you said you had 3." I answered "I do have three. Mady is 8 and Elly is 15 months." The response was "That's 2." I started to well up with tears and finally said "I lost my Abrielle 17 months ago in a car accident." I guess she either recognized the name or felt bad for making me cry and just simply said "I'm sorry."
I have tried for 17 months now to figure out how to answer this question without tearing up, without making the person asking uncomfortable, and without leaving Abby out. I still don't know that I have the answer, but am thinking I may respond by saying I have 3 girls - Madyson is 8, Elly is 15 months, and an angel Abrielle who would be 5. I'm not sure if this will alleviate the issues or not. It will probably just open up more questioning, but I don't want my little girl forgotten and I cannot ignore the fact that we had her here for 9 weeks shy of 4 years. I am the Mom of 3 girls and I always will be.
I don't know how many of you say this back in June, but here a link to an editorial written by Jeff Schmucker at the Forum. It still brings me to tears each time I read it. He expressed one of my biggest fears...people will forget our little girl. This was truly heart-felt from someone who doesn't even know us, but called and volunteered his time to sit in the dunk tank at the Celebration. Thanks Jeff Schmucker, you are a kind person to say the least. http://www.maryvilledailyforum.com/opinions/editorials/x379977203