One year ago, August 17th, we said goodbye to our son for the second and final time.
Our friends and family surrounded us as we faced the second hardest day of our life. The outpouring of love and support given to our family at this time was truly amazing, and I am forever grateful. I am grateful that we were not the only ones standing there brokenhearted. My heart was touched by the love shown for Silas and for us. We were not alone in our grief, and we still aren’t.
I still don’t understand why one so precious had to leave so quickly, so suddenly, but I do know this: The hearts that shattered the day he died bonded the broken pieces together in love and sorrow for our family. People are capable of great love and compassion in times of tragedy, and it is one way in which beauty can rise from the ashes.
In the days leading up to his funeral, God brought to mind the blessings Silas had brought to my life. I couldn’t believe I could see the good in the midst of intense grief. Each blessing proved to me that the pain of losing him was worth the blessing of having him, and my love for Silas grew even more.
As our friends and family came through the visitation line during the hour before Silas’ funeral, I could see the pain and grief in their eyes and in their tears. They tried to keep their tears at bay for my sake, but how can you when you see a mother and father standing there without their child? They were absolutely devastated for us. I just had to share why we were so blessed to be Silas’ parents. Their tears gave me the courage to stand and speak for my baby. Below is the video of my words for my baby boy.
In the days approaching the anniversary of the day I wish had never happened, I realized that even though I wish with all my heart that Silas were here with us, a happy 13 month old boy, I have grown accustomed to carrying him in my heart. My arms still ache, but my heart is forever overflowing with love.
I began journaling after I lost Silas. It helped me make sense of the sea of emotions I was discovering. I had never know such devastating loss before. I’ve chosen to share the following journal entry from last September because I often wonder what heaven is like. That is where my future with my son is. We are all moving forward in this life, but some of us are also moving toward reuniting with those who left us too soon, or those we never got to meet. Death has lost its sting. I have begun to realize my future does hold having Silas again. Lily always reminds us, too, that we will be with the baby we never got to meet, as well.
September 4, 2013
When they told me my baby’s heart had stopped beating, I felt so much pain. It was like I was giving birth to him all over again. My heart and soul were torn from my whole being. My body tensed and wrenched just as it did in labor. The intensity was incomprehensible. I could hardly breathe.
As I reflected on this moment, I wondered why his passing from this life was so similar to his coming into this life. I began to think there was a deeper complexity to God’s plan when Eve sinned and God said woman would suffer during childbirth.
Natural childbirth is excruciatingly painful. That pain faded quickly as I heard my baby cry and as he was placed in my arms. Joy replaced pain as he entered my life. When he left my life, intense pain filled my body. But, I wonder if it was followed with joy in heaven as he entered his new life.
This is the last photograph I took of Silas. He was exactly six weeks old here, and we lost him two days later.
You can read the story of how we lost our little man here.
***I purchased the above necklace from StampedbyDesign to remind me I always carry Silas in my heart.