You Always Know the Age of Your Deceased Child: Seventeen

Savannah's birthday was April First. She would have been seventeen. I've heard people say that you always know how old your child is, even when they have passed-- seems to be true so far.

We thought for a long time how we should celebrate her birthday. We decided that each year we'd do something that involved how old she'd be. Ruby excitedly offered, "We should eat seventeen doughnuts!"

"Why don't we pass out seventeen doughnuts at the Rosedale Ride to staff and teachers?" Tamara suggested instead.

"Ok," Ruby sighed, "but eating seventeen doughnuts would be better."

Ruby brought a friend and they walked around the Samsung campus (Samsung is a long time sponsor of the ride) giving away the doughnuts. Hundreds of riders in spandex milled around. Rosedale staff corralled, directed, and greeted them. By the time the girls had given away half of the sweets, staff were saying, "I've heard y'all are giving away doughnuts for Savannah." The Longhorn Band blared in the background.

Ruby launched into her speech:
pencil sketch: two girls holding signs that read: "Kid's Ride" With Arrows.
"Directing Traffic"
(c) 2016 by David Borden

"In honor of my sister Savannah's seventeenth birthday we're giving away doughnuts. Would you like to pick one?" Her friend opened the box and displayed a variety of yummy pastries slathered in colorful icing, covered in sprinkles, or glazed in sugar.

"Oh, thank you very much. I'll take one for Savannah. I miss her, she was such a wonderful person." a Rosedale staffer replied.

After distributing the goodies, Ruby and her friend helped direct traffic for the kids' ride and then volunteered at the arts and crafts booth.

It was a beautiful day. The gardening students at the school had tomato seedlings available for a donation. I grabbed four. I guess I'll have a tomato garden this year.

We visited with old friends, ate popcorn, and listened to the East Side Memorial Blues Band. We sat in the sun to warm up on the chilly morning. A bubble machine churned out sparkling orbs that danced around us. Savannah would have loved every minute of it.

Happy Birthday.

#family #inspiration #Rosedale #disability #mourning #specialneeds #parenting


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