Hand to Hold's Official Blog: Written by Parents for Parents

A Memorial for My Son

It’s Memorial Day and my husband and I, with our two little girls, have gone home to visit the tiny grave of our first born son.  We have not always made it to his grave for Memorial Weekend, but it is a wonderful experience when we can.  The cemetery is breathtaking and beautiful and it is a joyful time.

I used to think that Memorial Day must be a sad time for those who visited the graves of their loved ones.  I have since learned that as time passes the pain and loneliness you feel when you visit your loved ones grave turns into sweetness and a time of thanksgiving.  The first few times we visited my sons grave I cried tears of anguish and loss, but today I am looking forward to visiting my sons grave because it is a time I can honor my son, be joyful that he is a part of our family, remember the sweetness of his birth, and be thankful for his life.  What a blessing to have a day dedicated to the remembrance of those whom we love who have passed on before us!

Our little boy was born prematurely at just 21 weeks gestation.  He was beautiful and perfect, complete with eyelashes, eyebrows, fingernails, and hair.  His heart beat strongly for 54 minutes before he passed away quietly in our arms.  What a sweet spirit was present at his birth and death.  What a blessing for our family.  He was our first little miracle.

It has been almost 5 years since that day and our lives have only been richer for it.  We celebrate our sons birthday every year and we are teaching our girls about their special brother who is in heaven waiting for us.

To our son on this special day,

We love you and will never forget you.


Daddy, Mommy, and Your Sisters

Afton Mower About Afton Mower

After Mower (UT) lost her firstborn son at 21 weeks.  Her daughter was born a year and a half later at 27 weeks.  The NICU was overwhelming and isolating and it was through those two experiences she was led to found this social hub for parents to find the support they needed. Afton also gave birth to another daughter, born two days overdue after four months of strict bedrest. She believes it is a tender experience to hold a special baby in your arms when his spirit returns to his heavenly home, a miracle to watch tiny babies survive the risks of prematurity and a blessing to hold a healthy full-term baby after months of difficulty and sacrifices.


  1. What a beautiful tribute to your son. Thank you for sharing it with us.

  2. Liesl Johnson says:

    Wow! We’ll never forget Dan. My kids talk about him often. . .and I’ll never forget how perfect he was. I loved your post!

  3. Margaret says:

    I love your tribute. Dan has a special place in my heart, too. We love him and look forward to getting to know him once again! Love, Mom

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