Thursday, January 9, 2014

Happy 25th Birthday!

Everyone who terrifies you is sixty-percent water.
And everyone you love is made of stardust, and I know sometimes
you cannot even breathe deeply, and
the night sky is no home, and
you have cried yourself to sleep enough times
that you are down to your last two percent, but

nothing is infinite,
not even loss.

You are made of the sea and the stars, and one day
you are going to find yourself again.
(F. Butler) 
(Making the rounds on the internet in January 2013)

Today is Matthew's birthday; he would have been 25 years old. Last year I wrote about the shift that had occurred between the first birthday we spent without him (his 22nd) and his 24th. In that two year period, we moved from "marking" the day to the realization that we would, in fact, celebrate the day. This year I feel even more strongly that we celebrate the day that our beautiful first-born son came into our lives. 

So tonight when I come home from facilitating the Grief Support Group I lead, my husband and I will have Thai food (Matthew's favorite), look at photos, perhaps watch a movie he loved, and most of all talk about our amazing son. We are grateful beyond belief that he chose us to be his parents, and only wish he was still here. For now our memories and love will have to sustain us. But I also know that at night when I look up into the vast space above us and wonder where he is, I have to believe that he and all of those who have passed before us are out there amongst the stars having a grand adventure.  We love you, Matthew.


  1. Dear Robin & Israel,
    Once again, your words move me to tears and to gladness for the privilege of knowing Matthew and our abiding friendship with you. Your wholehearted response of love and gratitude for the gift of Matthew's life inspires and shows me the way, as I'm sure it does many. I join you in finding solace in the mysterious firmament of stars—a home that holds us all.
    With love and friendship, Rick

  2. This is beautiful Robin, Matthew forever young and shining bright. Love, Barb

  3. This is timely for me, as my son would have been 30 on Monday, the 13th but he died this past October of cancer. I am not sure what I will be feeling, I'm already sad. I do feel privileged to have been able to raise him to the man he had become to fight the good fight with his cancer. The poem is beautiful as is the song. Have a wonderful celebration for the miracle of life.

    1. I am so sorry for your loss. May his birthday pass by in peace for you. Thinking of you...

  4. Dear Robin,

    I'm glad you're able to celebrate Matthew's birthday this year. Happy 25th to his parents as well!
    Graham would also have been 25 (on January 24th), but we're nowhere near ready for celebration. I hope that we will also be able to look back with joy someday.

    Hugs, Jennifer

  5. My son also died when he was 21. His birthday is January 20th. Today marks the day he's been dead for two years. My husband and I are separated, but it's amicable - however, I can't talk to him about Philip. He simply can't handle my grief. My daughter, too, doesn't like to talk about him. It's hard for me to imagine sitting around with anyone on Philip's birthday, having dinner and talking about him. It sounds lovely, though; and tinged with pain, I'd imagine.

    Thank for this - you're an inspiration.

    1. Thank you for writing. I am so sorry to hear about your son Phillip and hope you were able to get through the second anniversary as best as one can. I also hope that you can find a person to talk to about all of the wonderful memories as well as your grief. Please feel free to e-mail me privately.