By: Amy Lied
Raising little, living siblings of an older brother who isn’t here is complicated.
We have always been very open with our girls about their older brother, Asher, who died before they were born. They know of him and his place within our family.
One time while having a dance party, my daughter went over and picked up Asher’s ashes. I asked her to put them down, because obviously that was nerve wracking, and she said “But, I’m dancing with Asher.”
Be still my heart! Cue the tears!
They know him….so much so that they even incorporate him into their play.
I’m sure some may think we are doing a disservice to our daughters by sharing with them about a sibling who died before they were even born, that young children shouldn’t know about that their older sibling’s ashes are in their parent’s bedroom.
“Kids should be kids and they should be sheltered from the hard stuff in life”.
These girls deserve to know about their brother.
They deserve to know about the person who completely changed their parents. We raise them differently because of Asher’s life and his death.
They deserve to know that life is heartbreakingly beautiful; that there is pain and sadness, in addition to joy and happiness.
Not sharing their older brother with them would be like denying his brief existence in this world and that is something I will absolutely NOT do.
Asher lived and THEN he died.
He was here and his sisters have a right to know that.
It’s unfair that our daughters have to carry their older brother in their hearts, instead of Asher carrying them in his arms.
It’s unfair that our daughters have to dance with Asher’s ashes, instead of him.
However, it would be more unfair to keep a huge part of our family from them, to hide the pain and the joy that their brother brings to all our lives.
Raising them to openly speak about the brother they carry in their hearts is one of the hardest, heartbreaking, uplifting, and proudest responsibilities in my life.
About Amy Lied
Amy Lied is a wife and a mother. Her son, Asher, was inexplicably born still on February 19th, 2017. Before losing Asher, she suffered a miscarriage and struggled with unexplained infertility. After losing Asher and struggling to conceive again, she went back to treatment where she became pregnant with her twin daughters; Harper and Scarlett.
She has documented her journey from the beginning of her infertility struggles on her blog, Doggie Bags Not Diaper Bags. She is also a co-founder of The Lucky Anchor Project, an online resource for loss families that houses an Etsy store whose profits are donated to loss family non-profit organizations. Sharing her journey has helped her cope and she hopes it also helps others who are walking on this road of life after loss.