Picking up Chandler's Bike
Today was wonderful and shitty.
Started the day at HotWorx for cycle, row, and isometrics. Dropped by Board & Brew where they showed me the most awesome gift that they were planning for us (it will be at the memorial on Sunday). Went to lunch at Lola's in Ladera with friends. Shopped with said friends at HomeGoods for some new pillows for my couch--score! While I was gone, Chandler's friends Hunter and Chase came and took a jillion bottles and cans to recycle for me, AND they cleaned up a huge mess in the garage.
Then my friend Jenny drove me to the police station in Aliso Viejo to pick up Chandler's bike. I started to tear up at the front desk. "I'm Chandler Espinoza's mom. I'm here to pick up his bike."
A few minutes later, a door opened and an officer rolled Chandler's pride and joy into the lobby along with a paper bag bearing the name Chandler Espinoza and dated December 15. My heart poured from my eyes. I stroked the bike seat, over and over. This was the last place Chandler touched when he was fully Chandler. I looked in the paper bag and saw his shoes and the Santa hat he was wearing to work. My sweet, playful boy who wanted to bring the Christmas spirit to work with him. I held the hat to my cheek. It smelled like Chandler.
The officer reluctantly told me the bike wouldn't roll well, so he picked it up and carried it to Jenny's van. Through my tears, I told the officer thank you. He hugged me and told me he was so sorry for what I was going through. God bless that young man for not being afraid to demonstrate compassion during a mother's worst nightmare.
Tonight several of Chandler's friends dropped by. We went up to Chandler's room. I loved hearing them reminisce about my son as they looked through his things -- clothes that only Chandler could rock, golf clubs, skate deck, journal from India.
Tonight I find myself exhausted. I haven't "done" that much today. But it occurs to me that this rollercoaster is draining. And tomorrow....we do it again. And we will continue to ride. One day at a time. Sometimes one hour at a time. One Santa hat, one bike, one pair of shoes at a time.