I always thought that I would have an October baby. Not a September baby. But I have a September baby. A September boy. Two years ago I was still pregnant and I am convinced that my little boy was still alive. The eve before his death-date. Then there’s the question: how can his death-date be before his birthdate? What do you do in those 4 days? Do you celebrate his birthdate? What should you do? When you hit the two year mark?
There is no manual telling you how to do things. There is no manual telling you what to do when the second anniversary of his death and birth approach. Now if he were alive, it would quite simply be easy. You’d prepare a cake and celebrate your child’s life. You’d have people over and celebrate their birthday. But because this child is dead – he is somehow forgotten. Somehow left behind. Maybe it is better that way. Maybe it isn’t. But tell me if it were your child what would you do? The one time in the year that you can put a week to the side and be able to celebrate the life and remember him in a way that no parent should have to go through. Do I really want to go through the motions this year and bake a cake, and throw flowers in the river and just try and remember how he impacted my life? Or do I want to sit in a pool of my own tears and grief him and not celebrate his life. The way he impacted me, even if it was just for 9 short months.
Then there are endless questions – what do people think of us when we want to celebrate our child’s life? Some will say that we shouldn’t. And that we should simply move forward with time. Others know the importance of remembering the child. It is the only time that we can do it. The rest of the year, it’s simply not possible. Life won’t let us stand still and reflect on our child. Life carries on and we have to battle through the storms and grin and bear it, when sometimes you just want to lie down somewhere and close your eyes and forget.
My son died two years ago on the 26th of September. I nearly died in the process of giving birth to him. I was praying for some miracle that Sebby would somehow make it out alive, and that I would be the one going home to heaven. Instead Sebby went to heaven, and I stayed down below here on Planet Earth. I remember laying my hands on my baby bump and praying that he would live. I was hoping that the doctors would give me a c-section. Maybe then there would have been some hope? Maybe Sebby would have been saved? But that wasn’t the case. I thought there would be a miracle that day. Perhaps there were small miracles though I can’t remember it. However, I can say with deep assurance and confidence that miracles have happened since his death. That Sebby has impacted the lives of others in a small way even though he is not here to witness it.
I managed to keep down a job, and somehow managed to move on with life by the grace of God. My son impacted my life in so many ways in the time that I did have him, I need to learn not to dwell on what I have lost but on what I had. Even though what I would really like now is a bear hug from my son. I would like his nearly two year old arms to snake around me and give me the biggest hug ever. Sadly, that’s just a dream; something that will never turn into a reality.
After Sebby died, I made goals. Goals to carry on. It’s a bit like eating an elephant. But by going about it I had to do it in small bite size chunks. I set goals that I could achieve and that could help me get re-motivated for life. So I will be setting goals again. Here are some of my goals that I would like to share with you:
- Learn how to drive (this time it will really happen!)
- Find a new job
- Publish my book
- Go into ministry
- Impact at least one person’s life
My dream is to one day impact more than one life. But if I can impact one person’s life then it is a start. And I need to know that I am able to do this, that I am capable of impacting people’s lives. And that this is the right direction I am travelling in. In recent weeks I have read various bible verses and heard various talks about fulfilling my calling, and I know that publishing my book and eventually going into ministry sharing my story and helping other broken people is the calling that God has put on my life. I am ready to help others by the grace of God. Lord willing I will be able to do it and the doors will continue to open.
In going into full time ministry and helping other people who have gone through similar things as me I know that I will be fulfilling my son’s legacy. That that was his purpose in life. I want to honour my son’s life by living out his legacy: sharing the gospel to the world. Peace be with you.
You write beautifully Hannah, and you can help people so your goals are a perfect legacy of Sebby.
I wonder if those who say that birthdays of angel babies should not be celebrated, or that photographs and mementos should not be taken, have suffered our losses. I don’t wish it on them of course I wouldn’t want anyone else to go through this pain, but they should realise that it’s those things that can really help a loss parent deal with the reality of their loss. You must do whatever feels right to you xx