This is my 3rd birthday since Ginny was born. From the beginning I expected Ginny’s due date and birthday to be hard. I even knew mother’s day and father’s day would be tough, but I wasn’t prepared for how hard my birthday would be. Why is my birthday so difficult in grief?
As with everything, it’s not a straightforward answer; there are a lot of complex feelings involved. But I think it mostly involves three things:
- Ginny should be here. I should hear her sweet little voice singing me “Happy Birthday”. She should’ve colored me a birthday card. She should be here being excited and jumping around. We should be celebrating as a whole family. My birthday is another reminder that we have a missing family member.
- My birthday has me thinking about my own birth. Why did I survive? Why did I live and Ginny die? Why do I continue to survive? I lived another whole year while she didn’t get to see the world outside my womb. Why?
- This is the 3rd time I’m celebrating my birthday as this new person. This post-loss Aimee is so profoundly different. My birthday is a day I acknowledge that there is no going back to who I was before. I’d be lying if I’d say I don’t ever miss the old Aimee with her naivety. But I’m never one to choose ignorance over truth, even if the knowledge is painful. The truth is we live in a world where people we love die. It can happen to me and my family or to you and yours. My heart was torn to shreds, but it healed bigger and stronger. I wouldn’t go back if I had the choice. I’m proud of the new Aimee. Happy Birthday to her.
Now that I know my birthday is a tough day, as it approached I felt like I was tripping in slow motion, knowing I was going to hit the ground but unable to stop myself. Then God showed up and slid a big fluffy pillow right under me to break my fall. That pillow was in the form of a podcast episode…
A few months ago, I was honored to be interviewed by Ashlee Proffitt for the Joyful Mourning podcast. The Joyful Mourning podcast and other Morning resources have given me so much hope and encouragement over the past couple of years. It’s the number one resource I recommend to other loss moms. I was thrilled to be able to share Ginny’s story on the podcast. I didn’t know when my episode would be released, so I was surprised when it came out on my birthday! What a gift! It blessed my heart to know that people would hear Ginny’s name and our story. It somehow felt like she was a bit nearer to us on my birthday. God’s kindness shows up in the details and His perfect timing.