What I Know Today

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Henry's Fifth Birthday

Each year since his death, we've had a small gathering of friends and family at the house on Henry's birthday. We have lunch and visit and then go to the cemetery for a balloon release. We also ask our guests to bring gifts that are then donated somewhere in Henry's name. Last year we asked for gifts from the humane society wishlist. This year, since Henry would have started kindergarten in the fall, we opted to collect gifts to donate to a kindergarten classroom. It just so happens that Henry's godmother is a kindergarten teacher, so choosing her classroom only seemed right. We collected lots of glue sticks and crayons and stickers, games, jump ropes, etc. It was an awesome day, and an awesome way to try to make the best of a sad situation.

Below you can see a photo of our balloon bouquet. We invited two friends who had also lost children, so I decided to have balloons to represent their angels as well. We released five orange balloons for Henry, two pink balloons for the twin daughters of one friend, and a blue balloon for the son of another. Everyone wrote messages on the balloons before we sent them to heaven. 

And off they went (carefully, to avoid all those trees, of course!)....

Higher and higher....

There is nothing I can say to you (unless you are also a bereaved parent) that will make you understand the depth of loss and pain that comes with losing a child. It never ends, it never lessens. But small things like this balloon release help to lessen that pain in small ways, if even temporarily. I know those balloons don't actually go to heaven, but to think for a moment that something I am releasing is going straight to my boy makes my heart happy. And giving back to our community in his name, and seeing other people so willing and generous in their giving to do the same gives me a little comfort to know that he is not forgotten.


Danni said...

I'm thinking of you! Hugs!

i {heart} papers said...


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