Une Histoire Triste; A Sad Story

Allright, this is one of the first stories that I have written in French. As per certain requests, I have also translated it. Since it’s true that everything loses something in translation, I tried to make it as true to my intent (as the author) as possible. Sorry that it is sad. It is a true story.

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La Mort Subite

Ce père et cette fille sont dans la chambre de bébé. C’est une petite chambre. Mais maintenant la chambre semble plus grande parce qu’elle est presque vide.

Toute la chambre avait été décorée en bleue. La peint a été difficile à trouver parce que la mère a voulu un teint spécifique pour son nouveau fils. Le petit lit à barreaux était peut-être trop petit. Il aurait été parfait pour Nathaniel, mais seulement dans sa première année d’existence. Le père se souvient qu’il s’est inquiété à propos d’un si petit lit. Chaque fois pendant les dix dernières semaines qu’il a mis son jeune fils au lit, il a pensé à ce problème.

Maintenant, il n’y a plus aucun problème.

Ils regardent le lit que petit Nathaniel ne pourra jamais utiliser.

Le père est bouleversé par la tristesse. Son fils est mort tout d’un coup et il lui semble que son cœur est mort simultanément.
Il ne peut pas digérer la réalité d’un « syndrome de la mort subite du nourrisson ». Il ne peut pas accepter que ce soit une mort sans explication.
Il met sa main sur les cheveux de sa jeune fille, les petites boucles douces d’un enfant vivant. Il est terrorisé par la pensée qu’il va la perdre aussi. L’idée qu’un jour elle va mourir est insupportable.
Il pense que son cœur ne pourra pas survivre cette tragédie et il se demande pourquoi il est devenu un papa.

La fille s’appelle Anna et elle a six ans, mais aujourd’hui elle semble presque vieille. On peut voir sur son visage qu’elle a bien compris la mort de son nouveau petit frère.
Elle a toujours voulu un frère. Mais il est parti tout de suite après qu’il est arrivé, et maintenant elle restera toute seul avec papa et maman.
Elle peut comprendre la profondeur de la tristesse de son papa. Elle a vu qu’il avait toujours des larmes dans ses yeux et elle déteste qu’il soit toujours si triste. Elle s’inquiète à propos de sa maman qui a arrêté manger, de dormir, de sourire. Chaque fois qu’Anna va lui rendre visite, c’est comme sa vraie mère avait disparu et les yeux de cette étrangère la regardent comme une inconnue ; comme une autre morte.
Une larme coule sur sa joue et elle commence à pleurer pour la mort de son frère, la mort de sa famille ; la mort du bonheur.

Ils regardent le trop petit lit à barreaux. Après quelques minutes, il prendra sa main et ils quitteront la chambre de bébé. Ils porteront toujours leur tristesse écrasante.

Sudden Infant Death

The father and his daughter are in the baby’s room. It’s a small room. But now it seems larger, because it’s practically empty.

The entire room had been decorated in blue. The paint had been hard to find because the mother wanted a specific shade for her new son. Now the dark night of the deep blue walls cocooned them the way they had intended to cocoon little Nathaniel. And they set up a stark contrast with the pure white crib. This little crib is the only piece of furniture left in the room; a tiny white monument. It was perhaps a bit too small. It would’ve been perfect for Nathaniel, but only during his first year. The father remembers how he worried about such a tiny bed. Each time he put his little son in bed during the last ten weeks, he had thought about this problem.

Now, there is no problem.

They stand there, looking at the tiny bed that Nathaniel will never use again.

The father has been struck by vertigo of sadness; it has swept him away and he no longer has any sense of direction. His son died and it feels like his heart died in the same blow.
He can not digest this reality of “Sudden Infant Death Syndrome”€?. He can not accept that this is a death without explanation; without reason.
He rests his hand on his daughter’s head; the little curls of a child who is still so vibrantly alive. And he is suddenly terrified by the thought that he is going to lose her also. The idea that one day she will die is unthinkable, unbearable.
He thinks that his heart will not survive this tragedy and, standing there, her curls beneath his fingertips, he wonders why he ever became a father.

The girl is named Alexis and she is only six years old. But today she seems almost ancient. You can see on her face that she has understood the death of her new baby brother.
She had always wanted a little brother. And now he was gone right after he came and she will stay all alone with Papa and Mama.
She understands her father’s sadness. She sees that tears have taken up permanent residence in his eyes and she hates that he is so constantly sad.
She worries about her mother, who has stopped eating, sleeping, smiling. Each time she tip-toes in to visit mama, it is as if her real mother is gone, and the eyes of this stranger look at her, unrecognizing; like another death.
A tear slides down her cheek and she begins to cry. She cries for the death of her baby brother, the death of her family and the death of all happiness.

They stand, looking at the too-small crib. His hand is on her hair, tears course down her cheeks. All is silent. After a few minutes, he will take her hand and they will leave the baby’s room. But they will always carry with them their overwhelming sadness.

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