It's been almost a year. In many ways, I wonder how it's possible that my son died one year ago. One year seems like forever has passed, and in other ways, I'm reminded of all the milestones I missed during this time of mourning and grief. It's safe to say that I'm still shocked about what's taken place in our lives. But I wouldn't take back a second of my everlasting grief if it meant Andrew was never born. He is worthy of all the attention and love his parents can give him-- no matter how long he was with us.
I've never been the best at birthdays and celebrations-- partly because I lack the creativity to fully design something worthy of such great effort. Plus, I don't feel like stress should ever be part of celebrating. Andrew was not given a memorial service because we were in no state of mind to do such planning. That, and I never felt it was my style. He deserves and will always be worthy of praise, love, and celebrating. He is our son and we are not denying that of him. We love him to end of the earth. He's far more important to me than anything we could ever purchase or earn. I can't really see the what ifs in this situation either, because we've always been more private (oh, except sharing my innermost details on this blog. hah.) and wouldn't likely have had a monstrous party for his first birthday anyway. But one thing is certain: there would've definitely been CAKE.
We won't be releasing balloons because it's not our thing. But we will be celebrating. If you're interested in celebrating our son's life, we invite you to celebrate with dessert. Our children will most certainly never be deprived of the sweet things in life-- as we are two adults who fully enjoy the indulgence. The best things in life? We're convinced dessert is among them. That, and our children.
On December 5, we will be enjoying an evening out to dinner in celebration of Andrew's life on what would be his first birthday. This will likely be a tradition. After dinner, we will absolutely be celebrating with dessert! We're not sure what kind just yet, but it will be good. So, if you're in, light a candle for our Andrew and enjoy some dessert in honor of him on his special day.
Also, a fellow BLM blogger friend celebrated her daughter's first year anniversary by encouraging others to engage in random acts of kindness on her daughter's behalf. If you would like to participate in that way, we'd be honored. Helping someone to their car, treating someone to lunch... whatever you want it to be in honor of Andrew's life. I'm not requiring that anyone do both, or either. Just inviting you in the celebration if you're interested.
His official birthday: December 5, 2010 at 9:04 p.m.
In this grief journey, I'm learning that those who have not experienced such great loss simply do not know how to react-- whether in everyday life, just after loss occurs, or one year out. No one has given them the green light that it's okay to remember our children. As Andrew's mom, I feel like it's my duty to keep his memory alive and encourage others to feel comfortable enough to celebrate the life of a child they've never met, seen, or held. Losing our son has made us sad, but having him has made us abundantly grateful. Your celebrations in his honor are always welcome--and while I may cry-- it's mostly because someone cared enough to make an effort to remember him. I don't expect you to always remember his birthday (though I do mention his birthday like every 5 minutes on this blog), but this year I'm inviting you to.
It would be really special to keep all celebrations on that specific day, but the time is less important and much harder to coordinate, I realize! If you shoot a photo of your dessert/candle or your random act of kindness, I'd love to share on the blog... so feel free to email that to me.
It's so completely out of character for me to ask things of people that might require time/money, but this is my son and I'm willing to give it all I've got to make sure his first birthday anniversary is felt in the heavens. We love you, little buddy. To the moon.
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