Another Unbirthday

“There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.” Washington Irving

August 8th is here again and you’re not. I wish I was celebrating your first birthday with you. Smashing cakes, snapping photos, and smiling along with the rest of your family as we watch you figure out what all the fuss is about. It breaks my heart to not have you here in my arms.

This year, I have your little sister here. In some ways, it makes the pain sting a little less. In other ways, it stings more. Now I know what I missed out on with you. I missed you sleeping on my chest, baby cooing noises, gummy smiles, a soft little cry of a hungry bub. I’d give anything to have these moments with you.

I’m so thankful you made me into the mother I am today. Happy moments are sweeter. I hold on just a little longer and appreciate the nights I’m waking from my sleep to baby cries, because it means she’s alive and she’s here. I’ve been given another chance to be a mom and I’m not going to squander it. I refuse to be the mom who looks back wishing I had done it differently. The only thing I wish I could change is having you here.

There is a heartbreaking story in the news this last week. A mama whale lost her new born calf shortly after birth. She’s been carrying the baby with her for over 10 days now. She’s mourning and refusing to let go. I feel her pain, a mother’s grief is universal. The amazing part of the story is her pod is also grieving the baby, and staying by her side. What a beautiful thing to have an entire community mourn the loss of a beautiful soul and grieve alongside the mother. We all understand that a mother can never leave her child behind. They are with her every single moment of every day.

There’s an entire community of people surrounding me that mourned your loss along with me. And most importantly, they remember your name. I receive photos of your name taken around the world on their holidays. That also makes the sting a little less sharp. You matter. Your name is remembered. Your short life is celebrated. Today on your “unbirthday” and every day.

Sending you one million kisses and hugs today. Happy unbirthday, my darling Gloria. I love you! 💜

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