Today, she would have been seven. As hard as I try, I can't even imagine what she would be like as a seven-year-old. I believe this is partly because we lived in the moment with her, fearful of what the future held. We became experts at living in the present, focusing on what we had right in front of us, loving her for who she was, and not what she could become. We are so grateful that we were able to have that focus, it was a survival tool. I suppose this is one of the many transformations that happened to us as her parents, parents to a special needs child, a medically fragile child.
It's difficult to know just how exactly to celebrate her birthday, her death anniversary, Mother's Day, Christmas, the Fourth of July....or really, any holiday without her. Hallmark hasn't cornered the market on this yet. Last year we did a toy drive for the hospital in her honor to celebrate her birthday. This year I just don't have the energy or the emotional capacity to coordinate anything of that magnitude. You can donate to her research fund at the UMDF.
There will be cake, however! She wouldn't want it any other way. But the cake has to be, "only a'nilla!" Translation, only vanilla! For someone who never ate cake, she sure was firm on the flavor she wanted. There will also be balloons, a doc McStuffins balloon at that, she loved balloons. Last year the kids did a balloon release, sending their birthday messages to Heaven (Please don't leave a comment about the environmental impact this has on the world. Trust me when I say there are far fewer balloons released since Lucy died than when she was alive :).
When I think of her birthday, I think of each and every year we celebrated her life. I am so thankful that God gifted us such a special, amazing, extraordinary little girl. To us, her time here on this earth will always feel too short.
Happy 7th Birthday Lucy Grace!