It still doesn't seem fair that we only had such a short time with you -- not even 26 months. We miss you every single day and will never get over the fact that we don't get to watch you grow up. Our lives will never be the same without you, but we know without a shadow of a doubt that our lives are far better for having had you in it. The day you were born was the best day of our lives and we have relived those happy moments all week. We never imagined that a tiny little boy could bring such love and joy into our hearts.
This has been a very difficult week for your Daddy and I, but I don't really have to tell you this because we have felt your love surrounding us all week. We anticipated that this week would be very emotional for us, but we didn't want to focus on the sad reality of not being able to celebrate your birthday with you. Instead, we decided to celebrate you by seeking out kind and loving gestures for others and by living in the moment; just doing something that brings us and those you love, JOY. All of our family, friends and blog followers joined in on the fun!!
We spent all the time and money that we would have otherwise spent planning a super fun, three-year-old themed birthday party and used it to spread JOY to others! It turns out that it was the absolute most perfect way to celebrate you and we know that you enJOYed every minute of it!
We received little notes and pictures all week long via texts, e-mails, Facebook messages, and Instagram pics. There were so, so many random acts of kindness and 'pay it forwards' in your honor -- meals purchased; clothes donated; park clean-ups; bridge tolls paid; special surprises for elderly people; blood donations; a birthday party thrown in your honor at a local pre-school; goodies baked for NICU nurses; shoes donated to recycle into playgrounds for kiddos; supplies donated to animal shelters...this list goes on and on.
Your Daddy and I completed quite a list of joy-filled acts in your honor. I'll have to admit, I found myself looking for even more things to do because it brought us so much joy to share about your life, while doing kind things for others. I just have to share a few of my favorites...
|A night out to a random mom, which was left on her car while she picked her child up from school|
|Live lady bug release for you on your birthday|
|A donation to Children's Hospital Oakland, which came with this sweet picture that a child drew of a ladybug. I think this was a true sign that you were enJOYing all the love being given in your honor.|
|Special thanks to whoever left this thoughtful birthday package on our front doorstep, which amongst other goodies included a birthday hat for you and a donation of books to the local library. It was a great surprise!|
No birthday would be complete without decorations, cake and a little ice cream, so we made sure to pick all the best for you!
|Daddy had a custom arrangement made to wrap around your headstone. We even went down to the florist with a detailed plan and picked every flower specially for you.|
|We tied blue ribbons to the trees, which blew perfectly with the breeze|
Our immediate family came over to our house on the night of your birthday. We wanted to be with those who loved you most and share the gift of time. Our hearts are all still so broken and I think being together helps to take away some of the pain. It helped Daddy and I immensely just to have everyone by our sides.
|No party is complete without a theme, so we went with SpongeBob since you used to love watching the cartoon with your Daddy. I was never a big fan, but you loved it! Who lives in a pineapple under the sea anyway?|