Monday, March 10, 2008

You'll be in my heart

Because we have, between our two extended families, 5 grandparents, 10 siblings, 8 siblings-in-laws, and 22 1/2 nieces and nephews--we don't do birthday posts here. Sorry, all of you lovely relations. (We hope you can manage to have a good one regardless.)

But this one's a little different.



5 years ago today, while I was pregnant with Jane, Brooke (Ryan's sister) and Spencer gave birth to Braxton. He was born with a severe heart defect and was, within the hour, life-flighted to the nearby children's hospital in Pennsylvania. Braxton lived for 6 months, never leaving the hospital and changing all of our lives forever.


Because of his birthday, I have learned better


  • how important and real my belief in the Resurrection is

  • that I truly KNOW families can be together forever

  • that God knows us, and orders our lives and we are safe in His hands.

  • that He will bring amazing peace during trials as we seek Him

I so wish he was here to play with his other 5 year old cousins, Elise and Jane, on his birthday. I am glad that I know where he is, and that someday we will all be able to give him a big birthday hug.


We love you, Braxton!


(Brooke and Spencer have been blessed since with hilarious and cute Carter and Abby. Go here for a sweet slide show chronicling Braxton's life.)

26 comments:

Melinda said...

What a beautiful little boy! That slide show was so touching. What an adorable smile.

HILLARY said...

Thank you for sharing that with us. My friend, Heidi, has a little boy who was born with a heart defect. He just had surgery to help him along. (she's on my people list Heidi M). What a happy baby. How lucky this world was to have him for a short time.

Kara Jayne said...

That was so moving Jessica. The slideshow had me in tears. You can tell that they truly took advantage of the short time they had with him on earth. I cannot imagine the joy they will have when they meet again. I'm sure that killer smile will be there to greet them!

Meg said...

Thanks for sharing that! Losing any family member is traumatic. And even just the small amounts of trauma that I've experienced has taught me a lot too! I love that the gospel helps us through these times and makes our vision more clear.

aric & jess said...

Very precioius, well done Jess.

Hazen5 said...

That was beautiful! For such a little guy he sure touched a lot of people's lives.

Christie said...

Thanks for the reminder of what it's all about. I needed that, especially because I just yelled at the three I have for not staying in bed. Have to go apologize now.

Lauren said...

That was lovely. I loved the little slideshow...my favorite was the pictures of him with the title, "Hit It!" like he was water skiing or wake boarding :) So, so cute!
Thank you for this great post.

brooke romney said...

What a great post I remember the experience well and he truly touche all our lives.

TexasTwinsTwice said...

What a beautiful post for a beautiful little boy! Isn't the gospel wonderful!?! As difficult as earth life can be, there will always be eternity.

Kristin said...

We lost a niece too, it is amazing the effect they have on our lives even after they pass. It is amazing to know them for such a short time, they were so perfect in heaven they only needed to be here for a moment to get a body and move on. How blessed our we to be related to them.

Pineapple Princess said...

Thank you for that special post. It was a great way to end a Monday night.

That video shoed that he had a lot of people who loved him and took advantage of every moment of his life. What a special little boy.

Laurie said...

My brother lost his little girl when she was 7 months old and Gabe was just 3 months old. Brynn's life and death provided me with such a sure knowledge of life after death and eternal families. Thanks for the reminder.

And thanks also to Braxton's parents for sharing their son with us in blogland.

As a final note, I think Carter looks like Seth! (I'm probably not the first to notice that.)

gab said...

Wow. What a tribute. I have read so many uplifting posts today. (One was your great letter on Annie's blog...another was Ilene's tribute to you...)

Seriously, it just goes to show that everyone has a story and there are so many lessons to be learned.

Thanks for sharing your testimony, too!

Rochelleht said...

Oh, that was darling, Jessica. I am so grateful for the gospel, too. How would we ever get along without it!?

gab said...

p.s. That hospital is where I gave birth to my twins and the NICU where they spent the first two weeks of life! Does your family still live in my neck of the woods?

Heather said...

Now if you'll excuse me I'm off to squeeze my babies....

Inspirational!

Penny said...

I am totally bawling. I am remembering the sharing time you did about him and the spirit that was there. I will never forget that sharing time and how touched all of the kids were too.

Hollyween said...

Jessica, you made me cry!
What a beautiful little boy. I can't handle stories like that. I don't know how people handle such a difficult trial. They must be amazing people.

Jacki said...

He is such a cute little boy.

Braxton is the name Brooks and I decided on for our boy. Well, when we have a boy. We love that name.

andrea said...

thanks for posting this. it's always refreshing to have a reminder of those gospel basics that are so essential in our lives.

Denae said...

Jessica that is so sweet. Babies dying is the saddest thing to me but it's true that we are so blessed to know what we know and that makes it a little better.

Ilene said...

I can't imagine losing a child.

But I can't even fathom losing a child without KNOWING that families are together forever.

I don't know how anyone can cope without that hope and knowledge.

We'll Call her "Lisa" said...

Jessica- I am Lisa, friend of Ilene Proudfoot (or sister of HER friend...anyway-) She wrote a blog about you, and I lonked over to YOUR blog..and read about that sweet baby boy. My son Jack was born with a heart defect...called Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome. It is hard, and incredible and unbelievable when babies are given such challenging first days and months of their lives.
JAck has had two surgeries and will have hopefully his LAST surgery this summer. Please give the family of that sweet heart baby my love and support.
Here's a blog I started for heart baby families- www.hlhsbabies.blogspot.com, it has Jack's story. And I wanted other people to be able to share theirs.
K- now I need to go back and finish reading Ilene's blog about YOU!!

Brigitta said...

that was a touching slideshow. What a handsome boy. He looked so happy!!!! Thanks for sharing.

elizabeth scott said...

Love you Jess
So glad you remembered this special day. Glad to be part of your forever family.