Dan Stringer

navigating the convergence of faith, culture and the common good

Happy 3rd Birthday Vincent!

May 10, 2012

Dear Vincent,

I wish you were here today. There’s plenty of birthday cake and ice cream, but I’ll be helping myself to your share since that’s how I self-medicate. You’re either 3 years old but not really with us, or somehow still with us but not really 3 years old. Maybe I’ll borrow your birthday wish and ask for the impossible: that I could wake up tomorrow to the sound of you playing with your big brother in the living room. He misses you so much.

People do strange things when their kids die. I got a tattoo (my first and only?) because I miss you. Then I ran a marathon (my first and only?) because I miss you. It clearly didn’t work because I still miss you even more than before. God only knows what I’ll try next. When I first held you in the delivery room 3 years ago, I never thought you’d make it to heaven before me. Hopefully the angels are taking better care of you than your mom and I did on this lousy planet. I’m so sorry we let you get sick.

But today is not about me. You’re the kid who stole our hearts and made it look easy. You’re the one we can’t stop talking about. This is your day. Happy birthday, son.

Love, daddy