If you’ve ever lost a child, you know.
You know the suffocating pain of loss that is a constant ache in your heart. Some days are better than others, and some days shatter your soul all over again.
Scary Mommy staff writer Caila Smith lives with the feeling that her family is always missing a piece. Smith’s baby girl, Lainey, tragically passed away at just 4 months old.
Since Lainey’s passing, Smith has written a series of heartbreakingly beautiful articles about child loss.
Recently, Smith wrote about having a picnic at the cemetery where Lainey is buried, on a beautiful day, with her children by her side.
There is no right or wrong way to grieve, and for Smith and her children, having a picnic with Lainey was like a salve for their souls.
“My four-month-old daughter has been laid to rest in this very place for a year and a half,” Smith wrote in an article for Scary Mommy. “Her second birthday is coming up, and the weight of her loss has been incredibly heavy on me.
“Today, I just needed to feel her near.”
So Smith loaded up her kids, a picnic blanket and made a quick fast-food run. As her children spilled out of the car on a sunny, gorgeous day, they ran straight for Lainey’s headstone with a childlike delight that would make your heart burst.
“Our visit today might not have looked how you’d expect,” Smith explained. “We laughed and played, and we laughed while we played.”
“Cartwheels were practiced, and stories were reminisced,” she continued. “My little ones grinned from ear to ear, and our family grieved in our own way today.”
So while the scenery may look unusual to some, Smith described the moment as “just right.”
For all the dark, hopeless days Smith has lived through in the last year-and-a-half, soaking up a sunshiney day with all of her kids was just what she needed.
“Today, we felt a little happiness in our lives,” Smith wrote.
Smith, wise beyond her years, has a message for all the parents out there living the chaotic, unpredictable life of parenthood: slow down and soak up the days with your kids.
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