October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month, so it seems fitting that we’d get a very special memory of Brady this month. Brady John Bear (finally!) arrived! I placed an order with Molly Bears back in April, knowing that the wait would be 6-8 months. I found myself consistently checking their website, hoping I would see the status of our bear change from “ordered” to “in production”. That finally happened in September, and I couldn’t wait to see what our little bear would look like.
When I placed my order and made my note, the only specification I included was that the color blue reminds us of Brady. I didn’t know what our bear artist would do with that information, as the bears pictured in the galleries online varied greatly. Some bears were blue or pink, others were embellished with a baby’s name, toy trucks, or colorful tutus. All of them adorable, and all of them unique, just like our babies. (I kind of hoped Brady John Bear wouldn’t be wearing a tutu though.)
On October 4th, I came home from work to a small box practically bursting at the seams. I couldn’t place what could be in it until my eyes met with the return address – “Molly Bears”. I couldn’t wait to open it, and wanted Jeff to see our little bear right away too. Jeff was out mowing the lawn, so I flagged him down, scissors and package in hand. The end result was me crying in the front yard, holding a light blue teddy bear. Brady John Bear was so cute and holding him brought back such strong memories. Jeff told me that I needed to go inside and hold him, because crying in the front yard holding a teddy bear is weird. I should add here that he understood why I was crying, but the neighbors probably wouldn’t, which is fair.
Side note: Crying in the front yard while holding a teddy bear is definitely NOT the weirdest thing I’ve done since Brady John passed away. It probably doesn’t even crack the top 10.
Our Brady John Bear weighs 1 lb. 10 oz., the exact weight that Brady was the first (and only) time we got to hold him. Picking up his bear and holding him to my chest felt so familiar. It evoked the same feeling I remember from the hospital in the early morning hours of January 29th. I love his beautiful blue color, and I also love how soft and fuzzy he is. The softness and fuzziness is almost reminiscent of those warm and fuzzy feelings that I felt so often looking at the real Brady John in his isolette.
Originally, I hadn’t wanted to keep Brady John Bear on our bed. I wanted to find him his own special, safe place. I was worried about ruining him. In practice though, it doesn’t feel right to not have him right by us. I tried putting him in his nursery, but ended up grabbing him before bed that night. It’s nice to be able to hold him, hug him, and feel his familiar weight each night before I go to bed.