Nick Cordero’s son Elvis was just 9 months old when the Broadway star was admitted to the hospital with COVID-19. That was the last time he saw his dad in person. But the 1-year-old’s mother, Amanda Kloots, is doing her best to help her son remember his father, following his death over the weekend.
On her Instagram Stories on Thursday, Kloots shared a video of Elvis holding a phone, watching a video of his dad as she encourages him to “Give Dada a kiss.” Though he doesn’t quite comply, her next story explains that before she started filming, he was doing just that.
“I, of course, didn’t get it on camera because I didn’t expect it to happen,” she said. “I was showing Elvis videos of Nick, and this one video was Nick talking, like leaving a voicemail message for a friend, but he had it saved on his phone. And Elvis saw it and smiled and — I’m not even kidding you — leans in to the phone to give his dad a kiss, and then kept going. I kept playing the video again and he kept trying to press the button, and he just kept going in and out, kissing the phone, kissing his dad. My heart, of course, just melted.”
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That first proud dad moment… taking your baby home from the hospital! I love this photo of Nick. He is so happy and so excited to be going home with his son! Since Nick has been sick my brother and my father, who are both incredible fathers, have really helped to fill that void for Elvis. I do love seeing Elvis get so close to his uncle and grandpa. It is a silver lining in all of this that we are all together and will celebrate Fathers Day for Nick with everyone. 💙
This means a lot to Kloots who was worried that Elvis might not remember his dad already.
“But in a way, it just made me feel so good because it made me feel like he recognizes Nick,” she said. “He knows who he is and he recognizes his dad, even though it’s been over three months.”
As we mentioned earlier this week, experts say that infants and toddlers do grieve, even though they don’t understand the concept of death. They notice a caregiver’s absence, and they pick up on the sadness of others around them.
Kloots is doing just the right thing by showing Elvis videos and photos of his dad, rather than shielding him from what’s happened. In a previous interview about children and grief, therapist Jill A. Johnson-Young, LCSW, told SheKnows that it’s important for adults to talk with children about the lost loved one, rather than pretend they never existed.
“They need to see that grief includes missing someone after they die and being sad when we can’t see them or talk to them,” Johnson-Young said. “They also need to understand that it is perfectly normal to talk to them anyway — and that saying their name and talking about them is how we keep them in our world for the rest of our lives.”
To that end, Kloots also shared a glimpse of a handwritten letter she penned for Elvis.
“I miss him so much,” she wrote. “I miss his voice, hugs, kisses, smiles, silliness. I wish quarantine would have been the three of us together every day. We must look for the silver linings in life, son. Life is never perfect; things happen we will never understand. Look for lessons, keep moving. Find the beauty. Love, Mommy.”
Why is this computer screen so blurry?
Cordero and Kloots did a pretty amazing job naming Elvis. Here are other celebs who are champion baby namers.