As a baby, you’d curl up on my chest. Or your father’s. There was nowhere you wanted to be more. You hated that infant carrier. You loved the front carrier and the backpack. You wanted to be touching us.
You were a very long and skinny baby but still so warm.
You crawled up on my lap and the laps of your grandparents. And even when I fell down the stairs holding you which resulted in your foot fracture, you blamed it on the stairs and insisted on being carried up and down.
You had the worst possible case of separation anxiety. So bad, a caregiver took a video to make me feel guilty for leaving you for three hours once a week. She wanted only easy babies. You wanted me.
You were fire and brimstone when it came to emotion. It was epic. When you cried, you invested everything in it. When you laughed, it showed from your eyes to your toes.
You questioned the status quo starting at age three, challenged me to think outside the box, and to re-evaluate my life. It took me until now to make the change. But you inspired it, Charles.
When you put on a shark costume and charmed everyone, I never imagined you’d develop depression. It was your dream to be a super hero and then later a rap artist. It was never your plan to become addicted to heroin or kill yourself at age 20.
I wish I had let you know you were still connected to us when you needed to hear it the most. So I’m telling you now.