Life After Loss - Happy Birthday Mommy

This blog post was first published at Still Standing Magazine.

The After Birth…

Eleven years. I can’t believe it’s been eleven years.

Eleven years!

As I opened my eyes on this early summer morning, I whispered, “Happy birthday my sweet baby.”

And as I stared out the bedroom window, peeking through the trees was my morning greeting, SUNSHINE! It was the sunshine. MY sonshine. Within the bright white sun rays I could see the vibration of my sweet baby’s breath. And after a brief moment of stillness my heart swell and my sonshine responded, “Happy Birthday Mommy!”


It was on this day, eleven years ago that my life had changed forever. 11 years ago. 11 years! I became a mommy 11 years ago.

As scared as I was giving birth at 26 weeks gestation, I was a mommy. Confused about the realization of my 14 ounce son, I was a mommy. With the helplessness that I felt viewing my baby’s tiny body, I was a mommy. Covered in my tears of heartbreak, my seven day old son exhaled his last breath upon my face, but I was still a mommy. And here I lay on this bed 11 years later, a mommy!

I’ve often wondered how I’ve survived the past 11 years. At the time I was certain that my life was over. I wanted to be the one placed in that grave. The air had been sucked from my lungs. My heart was destroyed. My spirit was dead. Life as I knew it was over. Now here I sit on this bed 11 years later, a mommy!

Through every tear, outburst, moment of despair and hopelessness, my husband was there. Despite his pain, my honey never left my side. When I’ve tried to push him away, he would never leave. When I’ve questioned my very existence, he held my hand with reassurance. He never left. He lifted me. Daddy lifted me. So with pride I stand next to this bed 11 years later, a mommy!

New Life…

Today I chose to celebrate. July 5th was my son Colby’s 11th birthday. I had a celebration. Although short lived, my baby’s life left so much to be celebrated.

I celebrate a renewed understanding of grief. I have the capacity to give love while broken, so I celebrate. I’ve been given an unyielding spirit of compassion, I celebrate. I have the strength to rise up and walk. I’m out the bed! I celebrate.

I celebrate the balance of emotion, thought and spirit. The light that shines on my darkest days, I celebrate. The sunshine. My sonshine. I celebrate. Healing, I celebrate.

Here I stand 11 years later. Life worth celebrating!

I celebrate.