I have been reading a lot of websites about SIDS (save yourself the effort - they all say the same thing - if I could rewrite them I would...I'll get to that later). Along with the websites come information about grief and the grieving process. We got an envelope of information in the mail yesterday about SIDS, the grieving process, etc. I read the SIDS brochure and felt comforted that what we are going through is normal. I moved on to the "Healing Grief" pamphlet. Sometimes, when I see such pamphlets, I brush them off as someone's attempt to write about things that are common sense. Plus, the illustrations in it looked 40 years old..... I decided to give it a chance, though. I began reading it and found it very enlightening and comforting. It takes you through the many levels of grief: Disbelief, Anger, Guilt, Sadness/Depression. I have gone through 2 and 1/2 of these levels in the past 3 weeks.

I believe I am still in the disbelief stage. But I waver between deep sadness and "anger" (I put it in quotes for a reason - again, I will get to that later). The author writes that in the disbelief stage, your mind will try to recreate the situation - re-write it so that it ends differently. For instance, in a dream. I dreamt one night that Ayden had passed away but that he kept coming back....he would leave us...then come back - that kept happening until I woke up. It was as if my mind was wavering between belief and disbelief within my dreams as it was when I was awake. I believe I'm still in the disbelief stage because part of me continues to feel as if I will see him very soon. I still haven't gone in his room...and I think that aids my disbelief because going into his room would make all the more real.

Of course I experience sadness almost 100% of the time. I refuse to become depressed, though. I force myself to move...get out of the bed...take a shower....attempt a routine. If that routine starts at 10:30 one day and 8:30 the be it....I'm moving. That's all I can ask for right now. I cry myself to sleep many nights, which hurts and aches, but it is healing. If I go too long during the day without crying, I can expect to have a rough night because that means I've held it in. I know this is all healthy, normal, and to be expected. I'm thankful for this clarity because it allows me to see myself going through the process as I, myself, should deal with it.

"Anger" is a harsh word. I can't say that I've felt "angry." I'm not an angry person. I told Jeremy the other day that when God was handing out virtues he must have given me an abundance of patience. I've been told I'm a very patient person; I guess I am. I have begged, pleaded, fussed with and questioned God with no answer. I never expected one, but it felt good to let it all out. Most of the time, it's the same questions and such over and over. I remain patient through it all, though....almost irritatingly so. I want to be angry, I want to yell and scream and hit things, but that's not me. I have always believed, and will continue to believe, that God has a plan - a good and perfect plan. I do not serve a spiteful God...nor do I serve a God who enjoys the suffering of his children. I know it kills him to see my life destroyed and to know that Jeremy and I are in so much pain. And while I will probably never understand His reasons for taking children....I don't have a choice but to except it. I could go through life questioning - hardened and bitter - or I can trust that God is good and knew that something worse might have happened....something even harder than this (and I can think of a few things that would be harder...believe it or not).

I do not feel guilt...thank God. I know we did everything right. Even from before pregnancy. I started taking vitamins 5 months before I became pregnant. I ate right, had clean check-ups, his heart rate was always strong...even throughout birth....just perfect. When we took him to the Dr. they always said - he looks fantastic, he's growing, gaining weight, he's the perfect baby. We put him to sleep on his back - let him sleep on his side sometimes but ONLY in the case that we knew he could not move or turn himself over (seriously, he was pinned in...he wasn't going and secure and sleeping so soundly). So, neither of us feel guilt because you can't prevent the unpreventable, you can only take precautions - and we did.

I had the pleasure of speaking with the mom of a dear friend of ours today. When I was in college, her husband was the campus minister of CCF at UNC. Their son is Jeremy's best friend - and I look at him as if he is my own brother. His dad is one of my favorite people and a man I greatly admire. In college, I loved seeing his parents because his mom was much like a 2nd mom to me. Such a sweet woman - so compassionate - just such a sweet spirit. We were at a softball tournament today - not quite the location of vulnerability. I was trying to be very strong and not break down, but I become quickly overwhelmed right now. The simple act of leaving the house is a daily hardship. So, the get in the truck and go all the way to EC....and have to be around a lot of people....that was big. Anyway, she shared her sympathy with us...told us she was praying for most people do. Of course, we got our hugs. I expected that to be it. Well, Jeremy and the guys had to go to a meeting on another softball field. That left me and (I don't like using names with permission, so I'll call her "friend's mom") "friend's mom" alone on the bleachers. I think she knew I probably wouldn't strike up a conversation. I let her ask the questions. She asked how our family I shared how they are doing. I began to feel more comfortable, so I just started talking. I shared my outlook on SIDS with her (I told you I'd get to it later). I told her how I do not believe SIDS is a medical condition (I'm sure science could try to find a logical explanation). I think it's our weak attempt at giving something a name to make us feel better. I understand that babies' bodies are immature and still learning to function. However, I also know that my son was healthy, perfect, never sick, never had a fever, hardly ever cried unless he was uncomfortable, hungry, or tired, had a clean medical record, was strong, and completely fine. (But there's no way you could know fully that he was completely healthy - YES, I can. He is my son...I knew him better than anyone...I carried him...I KNOW he was fine.) I believe there are specific children that God chooses to take earlier than we plan for. Why? No clue. However, I don't believe it's random. I imagine the 2nd earth....the one where we're here with Jesus...we've finally gotten it right...and we're here with Him once the old earth has passed away. Doesn't that earth need children? Babies in particular? Don't babies give us a glimpse at the innocence, purity, and goodness that we are lacking in this world? A glimpse of Heaven. I can't imagine a more perfect Heaven and new earth than one with babies and children. I remember telling Ayden on many occasions that I wished he could be my baby forever. Little did I know.... He will forever be my baby. I will carry him always, and I will hold him again. I carry him in my heart now, but I will soon carry him again. Some people have alternate views on babies in Heaven....that they won't be "infantile". I've mentioned this in an earlier post - it won't matter when we get there. But for now, it comforts me to believe that he will always be my little baby boy. As sad as it is to miss him, what a precious thought that is to me.

"Friend's mom" shared her personal loss of a miscarriage with me today. After 26+ years, I could still see the hurt and loss in her eyes when she spoke about it. I don't understand why we have to feel so much pain - it shouldn't be a part of life to lose a child. It isn't natural; it isn't fair; it isn't right - by our standards. But again....I WILL trust that there is a reason and a purpose. It isn't easy to accept, but if I want to retain an ounce of sanity, I have to force myself to accept it.

Towards the end of our conversation, she asked if I had pictures of Ayden with me. I showed her the pictures on my phone. It was then that I couldn't hold it in anymore. I had let a little out, but seeing that precious face....the face I long to see every day....that beautiful child that is absent from my life....there's no holding it in after that. So, she and I sat and cried, and she told me how beautiful he IS. He truly is....and I don't say that just because he's mine (I am partial, though..), but he truly is a beautiful child. There was something about him that I just never could pinpoint....a little spark that I could see in angel here on earth and now for eternity.

I'm interested to know how others feel about God's purpose in taking children and causing the loss of a child. I've even heard of a person saying that God highly favors those families who lose their child. When I first heard that I thought, "What a twisted outlook." But the more I thought about it, I guess I can see where that person is coming from. It's a deep thought, though....and hard to understand unless you've directly experienced loss and can look at it from a different perspective. It took a lot of contemplating for me to even BEGIN to understand....

Jeremy goes back to work Monday. I'm not looking forward to that. He is my rock. I was telling him today how I knew he was special from the moment I met him. I couldn't find anything wrong with him. I found something wrong with every boyfriend prospect who came in the picture. When I met Jeremy - I knew immediately that he was something special and I'd better not mess it up. He has taught me a lot about compassion and exhibiting a Christ-like attitude. He knows better than to "coach" me, but I do listen to what he says and I watch his actions. I'm so proud of him and couldn't imagine going through this with anyone else. He knows me better than anyone else and can read me so easily - and I can do the same with him. I love that. I love that we're so close. He is my very best friend, and going through the days without him will be hard, but it is also necessary. He needs to get back into a and coaching...I know it will help him heal. I also know it won't be easy. Please be in prayer for him as he is taking deep breaths just like I am. He may not show it or deal with it like I do, but I know he hurts as much as I do and is feeling the same amount of pain.

I have again written more than I planned. I hope it was more than rambling. Writing is therapeutic for me, and I can't believe I'm sharing so openly, but I'm glad I am able to. It gives you guys specific things to pray for, and it helps me release everything that has been running through my mind all day.

If you catch typos, I apologize... Yes, I am an English teacher, and I do proof-read, but I also don't see too well, so words run together. I catch what I can and leave it up to you to make sense of the rest.

Thank you, as always, for your prayers. Keep them coming.


  1. just want to let you know that our family is praying for yours!

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you often throughout the day!

  2. You wouldn't believe how often in a day I think about you and Jeremy. I want to so much to reach out to you guys, but also give you your space. I thank you for allow us in by your blog, I am so glad you find writing cathartic. I too found it very healing after I had a miscarriage last year. Even though I didn't get meet my daughter, like you I feel she is in heaven and I will meet her again. And like you routine went out the window. If I got out of bed that afternoon that was that. I not saying the road you have will be easy, but I can say it will get better. I pray for you daily to gain the strength that you and Jeremy need. I just want to let you know that you guys are not far from my thoughts. Continue prayers for you and your family.

  3. Lindsay,
    We have never met and I just found your blog today, but I wanted to let you know that you are in my prayers. This summer a little three year old girl named Patience who I would watch in my nursery during church died due to a pool accident. Although I cannot compare my grief to yours, my heart breaks all over for you and those who have lost their children. I have listed to the sermon preached the Sunday after the accident and the sermon preached at her funeral. Both have been a testimony of enduring with God through trails. I would hope that these might be a blessing to you... The link is and the dates are 2009-07-10 and 2009-06-21. Hold fast to God!!! Much love and many prayers. Katie

  4. Hi Lindsey,
    I think your outlook on SIDS and infant death is amazing. It is very profound and has made me think a lot. My son has Autism. When he was diagnosed, we too went through a grieving process. Three years later, I still grieve sometimes. People say we're a special couple to have been given such a special boy, such a special task in life...sometimes I don't feel special at all. And other times I look at my son, I look at what he's taught me, how he loves me, and how loving him has made me love the world in a totally different way...and I'm thankful. I wouldn't take his disability away or change it in a minute. I don't really consider it a disability...just the way he was made.
    My point to all of that is that yes, you were chosen. You were chosen by our Loving Savior for a reason, a purpose, a were given Ayden to learn and change and grow, and now Ayden has left you, and now you will learn and change and grow some more. It isn't easy and it offers very little comfort to think of it that way now. But resting easy in God's Loving Arms is where your strength and redemption will come from.
    I know it isn't comforting to know that your lives have touched others, but let me tell you how you've touched my life. I found your site through Patrice's blog right after Ayden left you. I have read faithfully each day since then. I have read about your grief and all it did at first was give me fear. My greatest fear, and I'm sure most parent's agree, is losing one of my sons. TERRIFYING. MIND NUMBING. HORRENDOUS. I used to think about my children dying, like if I thought about it enough, I'd be prepared if it ever happened. For a while I would almost cry each time I thought of it, and this fear really stopped me in my tracks many times. And when I was reading your blog in the early days, I was convicted of this. God really showed me how selfish my thoughts were...obsessing over something that hasn't happened, and refusing to trust Him that if it did, He'd get me through it. So one morning, while watching the video from Ayden's service, I prayed and surrendered my children to the Lord. I told Him I knew He had a plan for me, and while my children are my life, I told God if He took them from me, I'd still love Him, serve Him, and seek Him. As if I needed to give Him permission, right? I know, it sounds silly and immature just typing it all out here, but that morning, I released that fear to God and I gave Him my children, our future, and my fears. It was so freeing to let all that go. Thank you for sharing your journey. I can't imagine how hard it is, but I know He holds you through it all. He has an amazing plan for your life and I am excited to see where God takes you on this path. I know God gave me a son with Autism so that I could help others in my same situation, so that I could advocate for special needs children, so that I could be a shoulder to cry on for other parents. It is still hard having a son with Autism, but knowing that his young life and struggles will help others in the future does offer some comfort, some reassurance, some idea that there's a plan and it's perfect. Thank you, Lindsey, for being yourself and being transparent through this nightmare. You have encouraged me so much. Thank you.

  5. Hey there, just me, Kelley...checking in with you :)

    Reading your post just now took me back to my "hard days", some old feelings I had even forgotten about...until now, reading your post. I remember the day Clayton had to go back to work, it was hard. I went to his aunt's house and stayed with her for the first couple of days. Clayton would drop me off and pick me back up after work. I had a close friend go to his office before he got there to take Grayson's pictures off his desk. We too had melt downs when we saw pictures. Going back to work was hard enough for him, I tried to make it as easy as possible.

    You asked people's opinions about when God takes a child...I am STILL not sure how I feel. Almost 7years later. I don't like it, I can tell you that. But like you, I too have to accept it. He does have a reason and I believe I will not know until I get to Heaven. I have more opinions on it, but it's too much to write in this comment area.

    I went through the "denial" stage for a long time. Even today, this many years later, the reality will almost knock me over! I will be doing something totally unrelated to Grayson and it flashes in my head "wow, I lost Grayson!" I am not sure...can a mom EVER TOTALLY wrap her brain around that fact...TOTALLY? 100%? And one reason I can't 100% is because in my heart I know we will be together again. Jesus is just "babysitting" him until I move to Heaven also!

    If you want me to write more in an e mail I will.

    Thinking of you - Kelley

  6. Someone once shared with me this statement about Grief. . . Grief is a process with various stages. There is no "set" order. You will have periods of anger, disbelief,etc. think you are "over that stage," only to return a few weeks later to that same stage. Praying for you.

  7. I'm glad that you write as well. I can only imagine how difficult it would be to keep all of these emotions, these thoughts, these concerns deep inside you, and I'm sure this only scratches the surface of the feelings you're experiencing. But I do like to know specifics to pray about, and I like to know where you are, how you're doing. Honestly, if you weren't writing, I might be more concerned. We are always praying and always thinking about you guys. Ayden is one of the most beautiful babies and I can't wait to see him in heaven :)

  8. Praying for you. I passed your BLOG along to a friend of mine that lost her baby girl just a few days after Ayden passed from SIDS also. I wasnt sure if she would want to read it but she says it has helped her and I just want to say thank you for being so open and honest about what you are going through. And know that there are many many people praying for you and your family.



    The mother at this blog just lost her only child, her 2 month old son.
    It may be fate that I have stumbled across both of your blogs this week.
    I am so touched by both of you and your sweet little boys. My love for you is real and intense.
    May you be of comfort to each-other.

  10. Lindsey -- I have been following your blog, since a "friend" posted it on facebook. Your face and name is familiar to me, but I'm not sure how I know you...but we have mutual friends. Anyway, I wanted you to know I'm praying for you. I can't imagine what it would be like to lose a child, and the fact that you're able to even get out of bed everyday is inspiring. I too know that God has a plan and purpose for all things and someday it will all be revealed. My prayer is that God will continue to comfort you and fill your heart w/ His love and peace. Thank you for sharing your heart. ~ Heather Hines Todd

  11. of life's mysteries. I heard a message today from our pastor and his wife whose son (19 yrs. old) went to heaven just a few weeks ago. I think you would find it interesting and encouraging. It's at Please know that I am praying for you and your husband.

  12. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings. Your faith and strength are admirable. Thinking and praying for your family (Ayden too!).

    Stacey from CA

  13. You are a great writer. I am drawn to read every word. This is something I didn't really know about you before.

    I personally don't think God favors anyone over anyone else, and I agree with you that He wasn't trying to hurt you when Ayden went to be with him. I think God just allows things to happen when they do.

    Be strong! I am praying for you!

  14. I found your blog through another blog, and they were asking for prayers for your family, so I clicked over and read your story and have continued to check it here and there to see how you guys are doing. I rarely leave comments on "unknown" blogs but today your question about what others think caught my attention. I do agree with you on SIDS and I do think that families that lose a child or have a special needs child are very very special to God. Thank you very much for sharing your story, and my family continues to lift yours in prayer. I know this is not something that probably brings comfort to you right now but I hope one day it will, is knowing that your strength in you faith is an awesome inspiration to me. Your story has also caused me to stop and look at my children a little more patiently when they are bickering, or whining, or I am just having a trying day with them. I know that know this does not bring your son back or earse your pain but please do know that you are in our prayers and that no matter how weak and tough life may seem to you right now, you are one of the stongest peoplw I know (or don't know ;-)
    Always in our prayers in Virginia

  15. We've never met but I Think of you often. I have a 4 month old and I can understand all of the things you write about when thinking about your son. I can't quite wrap my mind around what you are going through and I sit here with tears often as I think of you and your family. Please know that people who you don't even know are praying for you daily. Take Care!