by Lori Dwyer on February 2, 2012 · 11 comments

My son is the spitting image of his father and it breaks my heart over and over again; while at the same time it’s a balm to the grief, a tiny piece of Tony still here, that I see grow and change every day.

How much is nature, and how much nurture? The Chop loves to lay and watch TV, the height of laziness being his ultimate relaxation. How much of that is because he remembers, and it brings him comfort, and how much is just because it’s passed down in some strange genetic form?

There’s other things too- the weak stomach and sensitivity to smells, the cheeky sense of humour. The way he sleeps- in sleep he is his father, right down to the curl of his lip pressed against the pillow.

Sometimes it’s when Chop smiles, sometimes it’s when he is grumpy and grits his teeth. Sometimes it’s something I can’t even pick- just a shadow of a movement, a memory made by muscles, a movement that makes me catch my breath.

It’s torture. It’s pleasure and ecstasy and love itself. It’s something I better get used to. I see so much of Tony in our son, and it has diminished none since his death… it seems to increase, as he gets older.

Nature, or nurture, or whatever it is… it’s a comfort, it’s pain. It’s my flesh and blood, and Tony’s, intertwined… a kind of living, walking memory that I can hold every day.

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Shellye February 11, 2012 at 3:50 pm

Your children are both beautiful. And you're right, just from the few pics I've seen of Tony, Chop bears a striking resemblance to him, and Bump is mini you. Genetics are an amazing thing.


Mirne February 4, 2012 at 8:26 pm

I have the same, except here it's the other way around. Our three children all looked very much like Craig. They all had his mouth and chin, and the boys had his nose too. So for months (years even) I would look at Craig and see our three kiddies. Poignant and bitter, but I still love my man.


Melissa February 3, 2012 at 4:07 am

So beautiful, heartbreaking and poignant. Thank you for sharing.


Claire February 3, 2012 at 12:53 am

Oh this gave me shivers. A mixed blessing to be sure, but a blessing nonetheless. Keeping you all in my thoughts, as ever.


Sophie February 2, 2012 at 7:16 pm

I relate to most of what you write Lori, but this one esepecially. I see my Jordan in her siblings all the time too. As time has passed, it stings less, and I smile more at it. My kids really love that connection to her, I'm sure yours will too. xx


Lisa H February 2, 2012 at 2:43 pm

That's a lovely post Lori. I hope you will always look at your son and remember, with a smile.


Cathy February 2, 2012 at 2:41 pm



Donna February 2, 2012 at 12:46 pm

So very bittersweet x


Miss Pink February 2, 2012 at 10:40 am

My kids are the spitting image of their father. I sympathise with how you're feeling.
The Chop sounds like he is an mazing bloke. He is going to help a lot of people in his life.


Something Gorgeous February 2, 2012 at 8:59 am

Yes I know what you mean. My father has passed away, yet I can see so many likenesses in my brother. Sometimes I really want to see them because it gives me comfort, sometimes I can't bear it. T


Good Golly Miss Holly! February 2, 2012 at 9:01 am

What a handsome little fella! x


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