This Friday, November 8, will mark one year since our son was given and taken away. One year since his tiny, perfect feet marked this page. One year since our hearts and arms began to ache of immeasurable emptiness.
Though we knew his loss was inevitable, death still managed to ambush our family as my wife’s water broke ten weeks early. The ensuing chaos of labor and delivery culminated in the suffocating silence of his arrival. This traumatic moment has carved a wound in me that still seems incapable of being healed. While we have staggered back to a place of apparent normalcy, the weight of Eli’s absence never disappears. Both the joy of his life and the sorrow of his loss have been forever impressed upon our hearts.
As we approach what would have been Eli’s first birthday, our souls long for him to be here so we can lavish him with presents and celebration. But we are parents who have been robbed of the privilege of giving gifts to our first child.
And yet, though death has strangled our ability to be generous towards our son, there is one thing that we will never stop giving him.
We will continue to give Eli the honor he deserves.
We will keep telling his story without shame.
We will always say his name with pride.
We will continue to share our pain with honesty.
We will not cease to speak of the joy he brought us.
We join with the Psalmist as we proclaim our son’s worth, for “children are a gift from the LORD.”