Happy Birthday Afton

I thought I might have some big idea for “the one year,” but it was October, and then it was November, and then it was December, and now it’s here and I don’t have anything.

I mean, I guess I do have a few things, they’re just not what I thought they’d be. I have a somehow-still-beating heart that can feel him in the soft December snowflakes, and in a cozy snuggle with Sage. Or ears that can hear him in the rustle of fall leaves on trees, and in his dad’s crazy laugh. Or eyes that see him in every winter sunset, and in the tiny glow of a candle. I have under-eye circles that are darker and puffier, shoulders that feel heavier, and a soul that feels literally 100 years old. But that’s okay. I am a better person because of these scars. Moms carry the weight of love like that.

So no, I don’t really have a big special plan for today, his birthday. I only have a deep bank of love for him that won’t ever run out, and actually, that’s probably enough. That’s a big enough thing. That’s the only big thing there is.

Happy 1st Birthday to my baby in heaven.

Me and your dad and Sagey – we love you so much.

I’m just so proud to be your mama. I wouldn’t have wanted any other baby but you.

PS. I shared some of your cake with RoonToons. She’s into it.

To all of our beautiful blog readers, friends in real life, friends on the internet: Thank you for loving us through this brutal year. And thank you for loving our precious son, an irreplaceable person of unsurpassable worth, Afton Bjork Ostrom.

If you would like to help us celebrate Afton, we would love it if you would light a candle for our sweet boy on his birthday.

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194 Comments

  1. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Anne

    My dear, I am thinking of you. I have been following POY on insta most of this year, but it wasn’t until the sugarfree Jan post came up that I clicked into your blog to learn more about this…and wow. I have spent the last few hours crying into the computer screen reading your posts and personal account of your grief since your darling boy passed. I have just lit a candle and am thinking of you all. And whilst a couple of hours ago giving up sugar for a month seemed like a Big Deal for me, I will now take up the challenge and think of you all the way. I liken grief to the first time you step into a small row-boat when the sea is a rough – you rock back and forwards quite violently for the first part, and then settle into a more predictable, gentle pattern as you start to row – the rocking is still there, but it is comforting and the sound of the water lapping the sides of the boat is not threatening, but familiar. I hope the waves of your grief become a little more settling in 2018. Thank you for sharing your story with us xxx

  2. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Even though we’ve never met I feel like I’ve known you, Afton, Bjork and Sage for a year. Your strength through all you’ve been through is unbelievably inspiring and you’ve touched my life through your story. I will absolutely light a candle for Afton and say a prayer for you all.

  3. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Caroline

    I just lit a candle and am now having a quiet moment snuggling my puppies, drinking my tea, and thinking about you, Bjork, Sage, and Afton. Happy Birthday, sweet Afton <3

  4. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Heavy heart right with you on this day. I think about you, Bjork, and Afton often throughout the year and especially today on Afton’s birthday. He is so loved. You are so loved. Will light a candle for sweet Afton today. Sending big hugs! ❤️

  5. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Amanda

    Happy Birthday, precious Afton! I will light a candle today to remember your sweet son. I am praying for you and Bjork during this season. Much love and Happy New Year.

  6. Pinch of Yum Logo
    LG

    I am later than many to your blog and to Sweet Afton’s story, but just recently read all of the details of your journey with him, in tears, and have been thinking of you and your family ever since. As a long-time Nickel Creek fan, I know I will think of him when I listen (to his song and to others). And, I’ll plan to light a candle this evening in his honor, sending love and prayers to Afton in heaven and you and your family here on earth. Hugs!

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Katelin

    Happy birthday, sweet Afton! We are lighting a candle for you on this special day. Lindsay and Bjork, you’re in our thoughts and prayers

  8. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I remembered this morning that this date was coming and thought to say a little prayer for your family. It’s one of those times…..I just have no words. Sending hugs and lighting a candle. Wishing you blessings in the New Year.

  9. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Allison

    Happy birthday, sweet Afton. You are loved and remembered by more people than you could ever know, today and every day. I’m the mama to a little one who had to leave too soon as well, and I think of all three of you (and Sage!) all of the time. Being a mom is a gargantuan effort of full time love that I don’t believe ever ends — even if our children have to move on and we, cruelly, must stay here. It has been a gift to me and my family to get to watch you love Afton so fully, and to get to read your words of a grief seemingly bottomless, matched by a love even deeper. Please know that today Afton’s life isn’t just being celebrated in your home and hearts, but in ours as well.

  10. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Emma McAfee-Hahn

    Happy birthday, Afton! We are sending so much love from Boston to you, your parents, Sage, and everyone else who has the honor of knowing your story.

  11. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Kathy E.

    Happy Birthday, sweet Afton. What a year he’s had in Heaven as he’s looked over you and blessed you in so many ways. His smile and laugh and bright eyes are always there in hidden places. A candle is lit in Afton’s honor today in my home!

  12. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Anne-Marie Desbiens

    My dear,
    I have followed you last year, and cried my share over your sweet little boy. I can feel your loss. My candle is bright and high as your love, for his 1st birthday.
    With all my love
    Anne-Marie, mother of Florence, 23.
    xoxoxo

  13. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Lighting a candle for your sweet boy, and for your family. Happy birthday, Afton. Sending you and your family extra hugs and comfort.

  14. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Karine

    Love, love, love for you Afton, and for all your family.
    Our baby girl Anaïs is with him in heaven. ❤️

  15. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Laura

    We obviously don’t know each other, but early this morning, I dreamt we met for breakfast. In the dream, I cried my eyes out to a friend, telling her about it being Afton’s first birthday. Needless to say, you have touched us all by sharing your darkness and light with us. Afton is etched in all of our hearts.