The 27th

A year ago, Ayden was here, and we were celebrating his 3-month "birthday."

It was the last "27th" we had with him.

On the next 27th, in August, we were living a completely different life. Jeremy and I were standing in front of a sanctuary full of people, and we were memorializing our son through our tears and the words we were able to muster.

The 27th is always a hard day. The 27th of April - Ayden's birthday, and then the 27th of each month that passes...marks another month older that he should be. And then, August 27th....the day of Ayden's memorial service; the last day I saw his face; the last day I touched him; the last day I kissed him.

The 25th is also a tough day because with every 25th I'm reminded of the day we had to say goodbye. The last day I saw his bright, blue eyes, his smile, heard him coo, fed him, changed him, saw him alive. The 25th isn't as hard until we get to August..... I don't even know what to expect out of that day this year. Some days, I can't believe it has been almost a year. On other days, it feels like longer. With Collen being due right around that time, I have no idea what mindset I will be in, and that frightens me a little. Over the past year, though, I've learned that the anticipation of "the day" (whatever day it may, milestone, etc.) is usually worse than the actual day. And in the big picture, I'm always left thinking, "Yeah, "those days" will be hard, but what I may feel on those days doesn't compare to what I felt the day we lost him or the days shortly after." So, of course they aren't going to be as hard as we expect, but they're still hard none-the-less.

My mindset has mostly been not to dwell on "those days" but to celebrate the 3 months and 28 days we had with Ayden. That doesn't fix anything or make any of it easier, but it does provide me with the ability to remain somewhat hopeful, comforted, and a little less depressed when "those days" come around. There's a 25th and 27th to every month, so I have to choose how I live and anticipate those days.

Today hasn't been so bad. Not great, but not so bad either. Grief almost a year later is lighter than it was. It isn't as overwhelming or debilitating, but I can't use the word "easier" either. I don't know that grief is ever easier, but it does evolve. I still cry and become overcome by the loss and the pain. I always will. He's my first child...the child who made me a mommy for the first time. The one I experienced all the firsts of pregnancy with and the firsts of a newborn and infant during those first critical, trial-by-error, scared-out-of-your-mind-because-you-are-responsible-for-this-little-person months. So much of me will remain connected to Ayden for the rest of my life, and as painful as it is to live my life without him, I'm so very thankful for the time I was given with him and everything I learned as a result. He taught me that being a mom is my ultimate purpose and that the little moments are the ones you should treasure - a sweet little baby sigh, the satisfaction of knowing that he just needed YOU (me) to comfort and sooth him, the love you share with this little person and seeing it reflected in their smile.

It will be strange to me when, God willing, Collen reaches 4 months will be like being a first time mom all over again. From the age of 4 months onward, our "firsts" will lie with Collen. They will be exciting, yet bittersweet, moments, but I look forward to each and every one of them. And if Collen decides to come on the 25th or the 27th....those days will hold an even deeper meaning. But I secretly hope he chooses his own day....specially for him. He deserves that. :)



  1. I am so absolutely impressed with your faith and courage. My dad died this past March. While I know a dad is totally different than an infant son the pain is still there-on all the firsts. God's blessings to you and your family.

  2. this made me cry. sending you a hug.

  3. My heart hurts for you. The 7th and the 17th are the tough days for me. I, too, have one of those first anniversaries coming up next month. It's a "first" that no mother wants to face.

    Ayden is a beautiful little boy. I'm so sorry that he's not here with you and that the 25th and the 27th of each month are so hard. Praying for God's comfort and an extra measure of grace.

  4. ((((HUGS))) I know the feeling the 23rd is always touch for me.

  5. You don't know me, but I have been touched by Ayden and your journey. I had heard Ayden's story last year from friends here in Rocky Mount. Then this year, when our twin boys, boys we had prayed for for many years, decided to show up at 24 weeks instead of the usual 37-40, we had the joy of meeting your sister, Megan. Megan blessed us immensely during our 4.5month stay in the NICU. Through her, I kept up with your pregnancy, rejoicing with each milestone. After making with friends with several families whose precious little ones headed to heaven after a few short weeks, I have realized what an impact these littlest of people make on this earth in short a short time. I will never again view life the same because of Aaron, Kaia, and Parker. Ayden's life, while oh so short, will leave an imprint on so many peoples lives forever. I pray that you will continue to to find comfort as you deal with living without him, that is until you meet him in heaven again one day. I pray that Collen will bring you much joy, bittersweet I know, but much joy and many blessings. Thanks for sharing your journey and your heart. Please tell your sister I said hello... Yvonne Ethridge

  6. 28th and and death...those are mine.

    They hurt each month, but you are right...they sort of creep up on you and then seem like forever at the same time.

    Lifting you up these days and more.

  7. this made me cry too, its the 6th and the 8th fro me. they will always be imprinted in my heart. sending you loads of love xxx anne