So for this 3rd year, I had no inspiration whatsoever on how or what I would be doing to celebrate this special day I delivered Lily. All I knew is that I desperately wanted her to be remembered and for her life to be celebrated. Isn't it any bereaved parent's wish?
But reflecting on this, I think my fear really was that if I didn't say anything, and if it turned out that no one would say anything either, people would assume I was done grieving, that I was over "it"...that there was no need to speak her name anymore. Yes, I have healed a lot but I want Lily's memory in my daily life. A happy and blessed memory. It makes me feel like this was not all for nothing. The love we gave her while she was here was real and will always be and it was worth it.
The only thing I was sure about was that we were going to have cake (or cupcakes). I had made it a tradition the past years to make a banana cake and decorate it, including a Bible verse on it that brought me comfort or inspired me. This year, once again, I was at loss.
Slowly, I decided I would do simple ladybug cupcakes. I had done a 3d ladybug cake for Lacey's 3rd birthday so I thought it could be cute. I chose to do a completely new recipe: a Banana-Lemon cake. I Googled it as I always do and surprisingly, I did not find too many of those recipes! People who know me well, know that I usually like simple recipes and this is what I picked. I decided I would try to get better at decorating cupcakes and try a new recipe, so I did!
I like to write the reference of a meaningful Bible verse on the cake for this occasion. I still had no Bible verse. Had I not read enough lately, was my attention deficient? So once again, thanks to Google, I found these pretty images on Etsy
The next morning, I woke up to the idea of the Facebook event (https://www.facebook.com/events/879327415464788/ ) where I could remember other children as well as celebrating Lily's life! The support and love I have received from the babyloss community and from my family and friends is really amazing!
I have decided not long after Lily died that I would capture our life without her, grieving, remembering, celebrating. The first photos I took were not easy to take. It felt like jumping off a cliff. Then, I realized I found comfort and healing in taking pictures of her name or of things that reminded me of her and how big and loving was my God through it all. So here are the captures of the days surrounding today.
We grilled sausages for supper. My 2 older boy started the fire! An easy and effortless meal for me, just what I need on hard, emotional days...
I baked and started forming the ladybugs made of fondant that I would put on the cupcakes a couple days before her actual birth date.
The finished product!
The actual taste of this banana-lemon recipe was interesting...I don't think it would please everyone but those who like lemon (a lot) would probably like it!
Here are the links to the recipes. I actually combined 2 recipe because I wanted lemon IN my batter and not only in the icing.
Forgiving Banana Cake, a recipe in which there is lemon in the cake.
Banana Lemon Layer Cake, I used that recipe and modified it by adding the lemon juice & zest and replacing part of the milk by it. I made cupcakes with it and an actual layered cake.
On the morning of Lily's birth day, I woke up to the idea of the Facebook event where I could remember other children as well as celebrating Lily's life! The support and love I have received from the babyloss community and from my family and friends is really amazing!
I asked for pictures of ladybugs (live ones, images in books, stuffed animal ladybug...anything!) and I offered to write the names of other babies in heaven so they could be remembered too.
I would have written hundreds of them if I would have been asked to...
I loved receiving ladybug pictures as they were tangible images that friends and family took a moment to show me that Lily was not forgotten and that her short life was worth remembering!
I also received surprise wishes from friends who posted lily flower images on my wall! How thoughtful and precious of them! Lily flowers are so beautiful, so sweet and so symbolic for me!
And more photos I took...
So, this day has come and gone now...my mother heart is filled with sweet peace knowing that her short life was celebrated like every life, no matter how brief deserves to be!