This morning my heart is heavy and my mind is full. I can’t stop thinking about Kristin, a precious mom in Oklahoma, who was a Mother of 3 children yesterday and today she is still the mother of 3, but one of those children is now in Heaven. Kristin’s son, Aiden, was on this earth for approximately 1,176 hours (7 weeks). In that short period of time his Mom, Dad, Brother and Sister fell in love with him. So did 24,843 people from across the United States.
If I did my math correctly, Aiden touched the lives of about 22 people each hour he was alive. His aunt Sarah and extended family have been the ones building these connections via Facebook, Community Events, T-shirts and other items – all in support of Team Aiden.
The hard part for me in all of this is the fact that Team Aiden is still alive and well, but Aiden is not. This is a sad reality, but this little boy – so tiny and helpless – entered a family that believes we all have a purpose, we all have a reason for living and we all have a responsibility to allow God to use our life in the way He chooses.
No one wants to see an infant lose their fight with an illness. No one asks to be the parent that has to bury a child. No one can understand why this happened; and yet this family has held on to their faith and the knowledge that Aiden’s life was for a greater purpose, one some of us will never fully understand.
My heart is aching for Kristin and I’m so thankful for the loving family that will support her as she puts the baby clothes away, sees an empty crib and wakes each morning without her sweet boy in her arms. She has two children who need her, a husband to grieve with and a family that will hold her up – but can anyone really understand the heartache that accompanies losing a child until it has really happened to you? I’m not sure if I can but I want to try.
I think it’s important to think through and process everything that goes with losing a child. It’s more than just saying goodbye. It’s letting go of an expectation, a reality and a dream. When my aunt passed away in her 40′s I remember my Grandpa saying, “This isn’t how it’s suppose to be. She was supposed to bury me – no parent should have to bury their child”. He’s right. This isn’t how it’s supposed to be – and yet it happens.
Understanding this possibility should not bring us to a place of living in fear or dread. Instead, we can partake in a sobering reminder of how precious the hours we spend with our children are. The question for each of us is “What will I do with the next 2, 10, 24, 100 hours I have with my child?”.
I might not be able to touch as many people as Aiden did, but I can make a difference in my child’s life and in turn know that they will go into this world and affect more people than I’d ever be able to reach.
We have a gift – TIME
We have a responsibility – PARENTING
We have a reward – OUR CHILDREN
I hope this spirit of appreciation doesn’t leave me. Even when I’m exhausted and tired of the daily grind I need to remember that some moms out there don’t get to have any more days with their little ones. I am blessed and I should be grateful.
Whatever you are facing or struggling against today, remember that it could probably be worse, but even if it gets really bad – you are not alone. Psalm 55:22 says: Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.
I’m a little shaken today, but I know the Lord won’t let me fall – I pray the same for this precious family as they plan Aiden’s service.
If you are interested in watching the service they are going to stream it live on the internet so everyone can participate. Be sure to LIKE our Facebook page to hear more updates and details about this family’s journey.
You can also follow them directly by liking their Facebook Community page, 50 For Aiden.
Blessings on you, your children and each hour you enjoy together.