On our recent vacation I was struck time and time again with the reminder that our sweet little girl is not here to pose with the rest of my children. Each time the children gathered together in front of the camera lens I found myself mentally painting Laynee into her rightful place. I would put her there on Jamee's lap, holding Brock's hand, or perched on Grant's arm. This was especially painful whenever pictures were taken of the girls together. My third and youngest daughter is missing and will forever be missing and it hurts.
Moise, of course, was not in the pictures either as he was not on the trip with us. I've always disliked the fact that on our fun, sightseeing vacations Moise is never in any of the pictures. Yet my mind knows the reality that Moise could never enjoy the long days of being outdoors, hiking and climbing in the hot sun. I know also that when we return, Moise will take up his rightful place in the family photos.
The void where Laynee should be is permanent. She is not missing from the photos by choice. She is not home enjoying being spoiled by babysitters, aunts, and grandparents. She is not going to be with us on our next trip. She has been taken from us in a way that seems cruel and unfair. I know that one day we will be with her again, we will see her smiling face. We will not need photos to preserve the memories. The fact is, I want her here now.
I've added some pictures of our trip and while the average person probably cannot see it, my eye knows right where Laynee should be in most of these pictures. Of course, I've added a few, not because Laynee would be in them, but because they are just fun pics.
And .............our sweet Moise on our last family trip