Happy 1st Birthday in Heaven, Josephine!

  
Yesterday, September 30th, we celebrated the one year anniversary of my baby girl’s entrance into Heaven, on the day she was born. I thought it would be better to face the day in a spirit of celebration, as much as possible, rather than letting it pass by us acknowledged, quietly and painfully. 

The kids were totally excited, because a birthday is a birthday, and there will be cake. We had a potluck lunch, after gathering in the graveyard to pray and bring flowers, and my awesome friend Kate made the cake. And Thai Chicken Soup for dinner (so I wouldn’t have to cook), which my kids declared the best soup ever!

My husband James took the morning off so we could go to Mass together…and had the sweet idea of bringing along Josephine’s photo…Daddy’s affectionate heart…I entrusted the day to Our Lady, as I had entrusted her with Josephine, that she could cover her with kisses until I arrive to take over the job. 


A few days before the birthday, my 7 year old daughter was walking home holding hands with her toddler brother when I overheard this:

It’s almost Josephine’s birthday! And you’re invited!

Oh, birthday!

And there will be cake!

Mm, take!

And later, when we all get to Heaven, we will play with Josephine! She’s your little sister, and we will be all together. 

My five year old piped up, “And it’s ok if she is still small, and I’m bigger, because then I’ll be able to hold her better.” 

 

Just as at her funeral Mass and burial, we had many people come, and I think this meant a lot to the kids, to have their little sister honoured like this, and celebrated by people who only ever knew her while she was still kicking in my belly. A few kids made her cards, to go in her memory folder, and one gave a special rock. Never underestimate the value of a special smooth rock, given by a child. Such things are treasures. 

  

Once everyone arrived for lunch, we counted 24 kids at her birthday, not including babies, so it was likely closer to 30. Happily it was a gorgeous fall day, perfect for a picnic lunch outside. My friend Tajsha made the kids’ day by bringing hot chocolate mix and mini-marshmallows. Celebrating in style!

We moms enjoyed coffee and sitting chatting outside by the garden while the kids played. I was very happy for all the company and support of my dear and thoughtful friends in this day. I was surrounded by love, food and prayers, and all these things cushioned my heart so I can honestly say it was a beautiful day. Thank you to everyone who made it special. I’m sure Josephine is happy her family has so many good friends, and will sparkle a little stardust your way, if you ask her. 

15 thoughts on “Happy 1st Birthday in Heaven, Josephine!

    1. Also, I’m sorry I haven’t been commenting on your posts lately! I must have had my wordpress settings wrong, and wasn’t receiving them in my inbox like before, so I thought you had stopped writing, and was word eirnh how you were doing. Just checked out your blog and so happy to see you’re still at it!
      By the way, I heartily agree that blogging is a place to share our faith and our pain, our humanity and our prayer, and not a place to bash others and try to squeeze them into a version of ourselves! What a waste of time that is, and what little respect for the freedom and dignity of each person.
      God bless you as you keep being yourself and sharing your journey with the world.
      Your sister in faith,
      Anna

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Melissa

        No worries at all. That happens a lot on WordPress for some reason and then I realize it when the person comments. I have no idea why that happens! Anyway, so good to hear from you 🙂 Have a wonderful day!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, we are so incredibly lucky! I have many, many spiritual sisters who make sure that harder days are filled with chocolate, hugs, and extra prayers. What a difference it makes to not journey through grief alone, but hand in hand with people who love you.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. They are beautiful girls. It’s 5am over here and I’ve just finished feeding them. They have started sleeping through the night, just not every night! These newborn days are so fleeting – they are almost three months old!
        I’m thinking of you as your time approaches and saying lots of prayers.
        Time to sneak back into bed for a little bit of extra sleep before the chaos starts!

        Liked by 1 person

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