After the death of a child, many parents struggle to find joy in ways they did before their loss. Many wonder if they will ever experience happiness again. For them, it may be hard to hear that they have every right to seek and revel in joy after loss. Many parents...
Honoring Brody at Hope Walks + Rolls
April 25, 2022
Written by: Danielle’ Kavanaugh, former board member + past guest of Faith’s Lodge
Ever since experiencing a Faith’s Lodge child loss retreat in 2015, I’ve found it cathartic to bring my closest family and friends together to fundraise through Hope Walks & Rolls, Faith’s Lodge’s annual family 5k fundraiser. It is a cause that I love, and a cause that our loved ones can contribute to as a way of honoring our son.
When we lost Brody, born still at 37 weeks gestation, I asked my family to make a promise to me and for themselves. I asked them to promise to be purposeful in putting good back into the world, the way we know Brody would have. Do something nice for someone, donate to a good cause, but something to honor Brody, and DO GOOD. This event is my way of offering them an opportunity to keep their promise to me and honor Brody.
It is unreal to believe that Brody would have been seven this year. This will also be our seventh year participating and fundraising for Hope Walks & Rolls. I use this event as a reminder to us all to take a moment, be grateful for life, the love of our family and friends, and make some memories together. Our teams have varied in size from year to year. During COVID when the walk was virtual, we invited twenty of our closest neighbors and kids (all in our cul-de-sac…we quarantined as a pod), and did the walk together here in Woodbury. It was SO MUCH FUN! The doom and gloom of loss can be positively transformed into honoring someone. This event is that positive experience for me and my hope is to make it positive for those around me as well.
Take the opportunity to show gratitude for your loved ones. Though the pandemic has helped us to re-center and realize the fragility of life, oftentimes we don’t cherish life enough until we’re personally hit with the loss of a loved one. That is a learning
I’ve taken away from our loss, is to never take this life for granted. This event is my moment to pause, reflect, think of Brody, and remind my loved ones how much it means to me that they honor Brody and our love for him. Their presence shows me that they support me, my family, and will never forget our son. Loss is the absence of love, and in bringing together the people I love the most, is incredibly fulfilling.
My mother-in-law has shared that she appreciates doing this event every year, because the money she donates to Faith’s Lodge would otherwise have been her contribution to Brody’s birthday presents, Christmas presents, and other things she would have loved to have shared with him. Contributing to the lodge is her way of honoring her grandson by helping others that need it.
Our 2022 team is active and we’re ready to roll on Sunday, June 12th! My husband and I will – once again – gather Brody’s sisters and will be joined by our family and friends and we will walk for Brody and do our best to keep putting good back into the world.
If you haven’t already, I strongly encourage you to register for Hope Walks + Rolls. Honor a child and help raise much needed funds for the child loss retreats at Faith’s Lodge.
Hope Walks + Rolls is Sunday June 12, 2022 at East Medicine Lake Park in Plymouth. You can walk in person there or virtually wherever you live!