When I was small, I constructed a vault. It was where I hid the sadness I had as a very young child, a bit broken from my parent's divorce.
It was where I ran and hid the hurts. Bullies. Silly girl fights. The walls were thin. At a young age, I started constructing strong walls. In order to be perceived as strong? All those things had to be hidden well.
As I grew, I started erecting layers.
By the time I reached my teen years, I had a castle.
Now? I have a fortress.
There is a courtyard where I let people I first meet hang out. It's the "pretty open" Heidi. I'm guessing that most people think it is the REAL Heidi. The "open and out there" Heidi. And I confess, I don't hide much from that public.
Friendly acquaintances are allowed into the actual castle. Its just the keeping room, however. A warm fireplace. Some chairs. Come on in and sit down. You get to learn about the things I'm not hiding, but don't often think to share.
Good friends and family are allowed deeper accesses into the maze of hallways and doorways.
And then. There is the vault. It is deep. It is dark. It is impenetrable. Before Jamie. I would occasionally allow good friends and family in. Just enough so they could see all the safety deposit boxes along the wall. Not to open them. But just to see the collection.
After Jamie was born, I only allowed my husband. I felt that it was too much for others to handle. Too dark. Too depressing. But even he is chased out by the very large, snapping, barking dogs that are guarding the vault.
And lately, I haven't even wanted to be in that vault. The doors have been locked and sealed tight for awhile.
I realize because of my decision to lock that vault, Butterfly Kisses has suffered. I have been taking a long time to go through the overwhelming list of requests. Working on them, for sure. But slowly. Without enthusiasm. I'm honestly not sure if it was my fault that I couldn't bring myself to be urgent. Or if it was the overwhelming list. No fault. No blame. It just is.
And here I am. It's October. The vault was cracked open today. Her birthday is only 13 days away now. And the dogs are sleeping inside. So maybe I will go in and spend some time. Reacquaint myself with the grief. The hurt. The everything.
I'm hoping it propels me to move more quickly on the list. No promises. The reality? My life is busy with the four boys here on this earth. I treasure the fact that I DO have them and can be busy with them. But I know many others are waiting on me. For me to help memorialize their precious little ones.
I promised Jamie that I would see this endeavor through. No matter what. To pay forward the kindness I have encountered in the last five years.
I owe her and myself that.
Thank you for being patient....