Our darling, G, was born April 8, 2017, sleeping. That’s a nice way of saying he’s not with us. Our family of six will always have an empty seat, so to speak. The night I had to deliver him I sobbed and sobbed for what may seem silly or insignificant to many. I had forgotten his special narwhal blanket at home in another town and had no way to get it. A dear friend offered to drive it up to us. It was the blanket we had intended to bring him home in, although by this time while in labor and delivery, we knew that wasn’t a possibility. For some reason I needed that blanket. I felt guilty for forgetting it. I felt like it would change something if I could just hold it. I fell to pieces for forgetting it. It was his and he needed to be wrapped in it. I needed it. Well, a friend brought food to my husband and also the narwhal blanket. I twisted and turned it through my fingers and grasped at it as I waited on the inevitable. I held my son and the blanket didn’t do much to change anything that night. And yet it made an everlasting impact on my heart because it was his. And it was important. So many times, the smallest kindnesses can stay with us forever. I will always remember the night my friend drove 45 minutes to bring us food and our son’s blanket. He never got to wear his narwhal diaper, or sleep with his blanket, or hug his plush... but when I see narwhals, I know he’s mine and I am his. I am a mom of four. I just carry one of my kids in my heart. Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness is important to us now, since we have become 1 in 4.
And here is the piece I ended up creating for Crystal in memory of her son Griphon
My brother Steve Pierce born on Christmas Day 1963. He was our Christmas present that year and he was the best ever.
There were seven children with the addition of another brother born 2 years later. Needless to say they were best buddies through out life. Steve always took care of Jesse. The eight of us worked together, played together and cared for each other. We are as close or closer than most families because we learned to rely on each other at a very early age and that has continued throughout our lives.
We grew up in the country and hunting and fishing were a way of life for us. Until he got too sick he hunted and fished as much as he could. He ended up buying the old home place where he spent endless hours of clearing land making food plots, making a garden and just spending time there. He even built a cabin and if it was deer, turkey, or squirrel season, you would find him and a group of his buddies, including family guys, at the cabin hunting and cooking the bounty.
Cooking turkey and dressing was his contribution to our Thanksgiving and Christmas celebrations. He did it like our mother did for all those years and in doing so honored our memories of her.
Family was the most important thing to Steve. He and Deneice had 2 children, Andrea and Josh both very attractive and smart and they were reared to be productive citizens of the country. They are polite and a real testament to their parents. They married Eric and Melissa who produced a total of 5 grandchildren. Wyatt, Delaney, Avery, Matt, and Riley were the light in his eyes. They are all smart, very well behaved and involved in sports and many other activities. They will proudly carry on the legacy of Steve. He loved his family!
He lived his adult life with a work ethic passed down by his father who always said that whatever you did you did it to the best of your ability. He worked in a cane factory manufacturing walking sticks, hiking sticks, cattle prods, etc. The factory was owned by his brother in law and Steve worked for 39 years there, never missing a day of work until his first diagnosis of cancer. He was a wonderful example of a hard working man.
He was a country man, a loving husband, father, Papa, brother, son, grandson, nephew and friend. He was the best. He loved life and left the world a better place.
Many people knew our dad as a hard worker, a great brother, and friend. And he was. We also want everyone to leave here knowing he was the best dad two kids could ever ask for. Our house was full of a thousand beautiful memories. We could tell you so many stories about how good he was and how happy he made us, and that would still not do him justice. He was a really good teacher and very patient. He was always able to give give advice and comfort in a calming fashion. I'll forever believe he was one of the smartest people I've ever known. We could go to him with a question about anything and he almost always came through. There are too many facets of him to cover in any one day, and anyone who knew him well at all would never argue with that. We will forever cherish the extra time spent with him the last few years because of trips to the doctor and chemo visits. They allowed us to do something that we didn't think was possible...become closer to him and to love him even more.
Dad left behind five young grandchildren, whom he loved more than they'll ever realize. They made his life so sweet. We are so sorry the little ones have to finish growing up without him, but will continue to pass on the lessons we were taught. Dad always, always did what was right. So we'll teach the kids that when they come to a time in life when hard choices are faced, to decide between what is easy and what is right, Papa would tell you to always do what is right. If they live life in the way Papa lived his, you will be just fine. He always told us to go out and make him proud. And so, they can go out and make him proud.
—Andrea Pierce Thompson and Josh Pierce
And here is the bowl I ended up creating for Steve...