On Her Sixth Birthday

By | September 28, 2023
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On Her Sixth Birthday

I’ve been thinking about you a lot. Maybe because today you would have been celebrating your sixth birthday. And had you not been taken from us, by now you would have learned to sit up, crawl, walk, talk, and grow into a beautiful little girl.

You would be in kindergarten this year.

But you missed all of that. And we missed all of that.

We all lost so much when we lost you. Words can’t begin to express the sorrow I feel. No words can express how much I wish I could pick you up, hug you, and tell you how much I love you – and wish you a very happy birthday today.

Your little lifetime didn’t even last one single day. Yet the number of days your life will affect all of those who love you is infinite. I know there will never be a day I won’t think of you. There won’t be a day when your mom and dad won’t think of you. There won’t be a day when any of us who met you during your short life will ever forget you.

It’s so hard to believe it has been six years since you were born – and six years since you were taken from us. And to know you were taken from us by a preventable disease makes it all the harder to bear and understand.

But I don’t wonder where you are now. I know where you are. You’re in heaven with the angels. And, I’ll admit, I have been a doubter at times when it comes to whether heaven and hell exist. But I have no doubts anymore. Even mankind in all its ugliness, meanness, and ignorance say you belong to Heaven.

No, I don’t have any doubts now. I know now that there is a heaven. And I know you are there. You are where beautiful baby girls who have had a lifetime taken from them belong – you are in heaven with the angels…

And I know now that you are an angel too. 

I hope that you and all the angels will look down upon us and comfort all of us who grieve for you. I know you will bring peace and comfort to your mom and dad. They love you and miss you so much… so much more than any words could ever say.

Somehow I feel that you know how much we miss you and love you. I know that you feel our sadness and our grief because you are with us – even now. Maybe we are missing out on a lot more than you are, but I cannot help but think about all the things that those of us who love you are missing because you were taken from us.

I think of you today, on your sixth birthday, and I cry. I try not to, but I do. I’m sorry. Thinking of the things we’ve missed –  things like you learning to sit up, watching you learn how to crawl and then walk, watching you laugh, hearing your little giggles, hearing your first words, watching you take your first drink from a sippy cup. All those things we’ll never get to see.

And we’ll never get to see how your eyes lit up when you saw your very first Christmas tree. We’ll never get to hear you tell us all about your first day of Kindergarten. We’ll never hear you tell us about your first day in first grade. We’ll never get to watch you as you read your first book or watch you learn to write your name for the first time. And we can only imagine your excitement and trepidation as you take your first ride on the school bus.

We will never get to take turns holding your hand as we take you on your first trip to the zoo.

We will miss watching you learn to ride a bike.

We will miss all those things and more.

We’ll miss you and watching you grow and change from a beautiful baby, into a precious little girl. And from a sweet little girl into a beautiful young lady. We’ll miss the school events, the school plays, the school concerts, your first date, your high school graduation.

What you might have been we’ll never know because you were stolen from us. We didn’t even get to keep you one single day.

To know that your death could have been prevented only makes your passing even harder to understand and so hard to bear.

If only…

If only things would have turned out differently. If only you had lived. If only you were with us today on your sixth birthday. I so wish all of us who love you could see you blow out the candles on your birthday cake. And so today, instead of us looking back in anguish with sad and aching hearts, all of us who love you would have been celebrating with you.

I can see all of us, all of your family, all of us who love you, gathered around you and singing Happy Birthday while you blow out those six birthday candles…and make your birthday wish.

I will never forget you. I will never forget those precious moments right after you were born when all of us who loved you took turns holding you in our arms.

I hope you and your angels look down upon all of us who love you and know how much we all miss you.

We love you and miss you more than these words could ever say.

I pray today that you and the other angels comfort your mom and dad and bring them peace and solace. Today will not be an easy day for them… or for any of us who know you and love you.

The gift of your birth is a gift those of us who love you will never forget.

I  know you know how much we love you, how very much we miss you, and how we all keep you alive in our thoughts and prayers every single day.

We are remembering you on your sixth birthday. We miss you and love you so much. And you are always with us.

9 thoughts on “On Her Sixth Birthday

  1. Joyce Linsenmeyer

    How sad this is. I too know the loss of a child my grandson. My life has never been the same since his passing. However we had him longer here with us but at thirty seven he decided he wasn’t happy so he had to leave us.
    I think the death of a child is the hardest to get over.
    So with this said I hope your Heart does not suffer too bad.

  2. Jody Waldo

    I’m so sorry. She was loved by all of you- surrounded by it, and love is timeless. Carried by your love, and accepted into eternal Love, your granddaughter is timeless, as well 🙏.

  3. Vicki Haines

    I tried to read this whole essay but my parents went through this years ago and I think about my older brother who lived but 24 hours. What he would have grown up to be, what he would like or didn’t like. I think about the brother I do have and if the two of them would have been best buddies. One day I will join him and by that time it will be the 3 of us…2 brothers and one sister. I praise God each day for His caring enough to take John home and not having a life where sicckness would have prevailed if he had lived. To think of all the fun we could have had here on earth is something to look forward to later on. Thank you for the essay TC!

  4. Joann Bolen

    I lost a little great-granddaughter at only two years old. She was suddenly struck w/acute meningitis apparently caused by an ear infection. What a loss it was…our granddaughters first child & such a shock. Dear granddaughter will suffers frequent depression & her husband suffers through that, also. Life goes on but how very difficult it must be at certain times in the year(s) as they go by…Our granddaughter & her husband have a little 2-yr. boy now & he is just “as good as it gets”. But they can see a strong resemblance in him & his sister born before him & now gone. But life goes on…and on…and on & somehow the sadness fades now & then. It must be “rough/tough” on parents suffering such a loss as that of a child. Prayers are always heard by our Lord as we ask Him to help & strengthen the parents of a deceased little daughter. Thank you for allowing this sad event – the worst that ever happened in our family – ever.
    Joann Bolen

  5. Patricia Doyle

    This is so touching. What a wonderful gift to your granddaughter and your family. My son and daughter-in-law lost their first baby when he was 7 weeks old. It was such a tragedy our family will never forget. It’s hard to recover from such a tragedy, but we all have to carry on but that does not mean we will ever forget. We never will. I cried when I read your essay. I cried you and you lost and I cried for my baby grandson who died at 7 weeks. God Bless You.

  6. Debbie Canady

    Oh, TC, how very sorry I am for your loss and that of her mother. I just can’t imagine the pain that never leaves you. I’ve been blessed with children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren and would be devastated if any of them were to pass before I do. My prayers are with you.


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