Here we go- Part two:
This wish was inspired by the countless birthday greetings I have received online through social media over the years. So this year, I wanted to utilize social media to do something a bit different, but I need your help!
I must tell you before I continue that I am have been so grateful for each "Happy Birthday" that has ever been sent to me but the reality is that having a "happy" birthday has always been difficult. Having a birthday the day my nephew died and the day after my son's death has proved to be pretty brutal, especially when the "Happy Birthdays" start rolling in. I say "Thank You" with a heart full of sadness and guilt that Matthew and Christopher aren't here with us. So even as the thank you's roll out of my mouth, the sting stays in my heart. Accepting a "Happy Birthday" is hard, it really is.
This year, I spent a large amount of time reflecting upon Matthew's birthday and my birthday determined to find the "happy" in my birthday again. The only way for me to find the happy in the midst of it all is to make a difference in the lives of others. I share the following in hopes that you will understand where I am at now in this place after eight years of navigating some really tough days...
July 2, 1989...I made a wish
July 2, 2005...I made a wish
July 2, 2013...I make this wish...
Matthew never had the chance to make a wish for himself and for the past 8 years, I haven't had the courage to make a wish for either one of us...today I do.
Last year, I received hundreds of birthday greetings and I appreciated every single one. But this year, I ask that the minute that you may take to type "Happy Birthday" to me, instead you will please reserve that minute to tell someone else you are thinking of them. If those hundreds of messages are sent to others instead of me, that would be hundreds of people that would be encouraged! And I promise, I won't feel unloved if you don't send me a message...just the opposite, actually!
I wish that in lieu of any "Happy Birthday" messages that may be sent my way, instead a message of encouragement to another mother, father or family that you know that has experienced child loss or life changing loss of any kind will be sent their way. There are people everywhere struggling to make it through the day and I know what a simple "thinking of you" can mean to someone.
Not only would this mean so much to me, it would mean so much to the person that you are going to send some love to! I promise, you will make someone's day by doing this!
Since tragedy struck our family July 3, 1989 on my 15th birthday when Christopher passed away and then Matthew passing away July 2, 2005, the day before my 31st birthday, I have wondered about this thing called a "happy" birthday...but as I was praying about our birthdays this year, I was gently reminded that happiness is circumstantial but joy is God-given. There is nothing I can do to change the circumstances of the tragedies that stormed our families, BUT I can still find joy in the midst of these days!
So I am seeking JOY today and tomorrow and in that joy, there I will find the "happy" in my birthday!
JOY in my heart because I know that someone is going to feel loved, someone is going to be encouraged, someone is going to smile...that makes me happy! That's where the "happy" is in my birthday!
Please be a bright spot on this day for someone! My birthday is about celebrating life and love and the fact that I am still here to carry on for my family and for Matthew. God gave me the chance to live again on that operating table to share my story with others and to offer hope, love and encouragement to those who hurt from losing a child or suffer from life changing loss. I wish to do that today and every day for the rest of my life, but today and tomorrow, I wish for your help!.
This birthday wish and celebration of life will begin today on Matthew's birthday, July 2nd and continue through my birthday, July 3rd. I want to celebrate these two days by giving love and kindness as I recognize the "happy"in my birthday will come from blessing the hearts of others!
I wish everyone will feel loved on these days...and that no one would feel alone! I wish that there are less happy birthdays to me and more love to others!
I haven't made a wish in 8 years...and I must say it feels really good to make this wish in memory of Matthew and Christopher.
Please help make this wish come true...for me and for my sweet Matthew!
Thank you from the bottom of my heart...thank you for making this wish come true!
My love and gratitude today and always!
And a very special Happy Birthday to my little Matthew...wow, have you ever had an impact on our lives and the lives of so many others! I am so very proud to be your mom! I love you!
PS...I wish you were here!