Three Little Birds

Story of 3 little birds and one who soared above us all.

The longest week…

Today has been one full week since we last held our sweet Lydia. It has been a long and slow week but we have been sustained by the overwhelming love and support that has poured out for our little angel. In her service, the minister described Lydia as a Bodhisattva, the Buddhist term for anyone is motivated by compassion and seeks enlightenment not only for herself but also for everyone…I believe that she was our little light serving a purpose I can not yet begin to understand. Her Boston social worker sent the perfect note of thanking us for sharing her with everyone in Boston even though there were many days we deeply regretted our decision to be there.

In the past week, our Nutella mustached midget fascist dictators who rule our household have left us little time for wallowing and the large pity parties we desire. While I would like nothing more than to just hibernate for awhile, that’s not too possible with toddlers. Wyatt has been very whiny and a bit under the weather and seems more sensitive to what all has happened.  Ava  has dealt with her stress by taking the 2 year old task of being obstinate to new levels. Tuesday we took them to the KC Zoo and Ava was pretty enthralled by the orangutangs in their pretty depressing habitat who were “sooo coot.” She had a full saga about what Baby, Mommy, Daddy and Auntie orangutang where up and what they all should be doing. On Wednesday, we decided on a whim to take a road trip to STL and Farmington to get Clay’s steel pans tuned. Turns out the only place in the Midwest to get pans tuned is in Farmington and they needed to be done before summer anyway. It was a better idea in theory. We stopped in Columbia so they could do Parmesan cheese shots at Shakespeare’s Pizza. We then headed over to cousin Dom’s frat house to burn some energy and so far on this trip, running around the basketball court at the Phi Delta Theta house has been the most accepted activity. We spent the night in STL and they attempted to crash the room like a couple of rock stars complete with screaming late into the evening and refusing sleep for the thrill of more partying. Today we went to the City Museum in STL; yet another grand plan much better in theory than execution. $30 and 2 hrs later, 2 grumpy toddlers and parents left for another attempt at a meal they wouldn’t eat and more fun time in the car so they could start complaining about their needs of “eating foods.” The afternoon was slightly redeemed with a nap and some uninhibited playtime in the hotel although Ava’s hour log screaming for a different bed has me rethinking any future vacations. Tomorrow we’re heading to St. Genevieve to see a Tiger sanctuary and then starting the journey back home. Clay’s spring break will be over at the end of the week and we’ll attempt to return to some sort of normalcy, whatever that may be. We miss the beeps and noisy ventilator and oxygen concentrator and even miss the constant influx of nurses in the home and we miss that brief moment of time where we made our best efforts of parenting triplets.



  1. Jayna

    Thinking about you and your fam everyday, if there is anything I can do please let me know.

  2. Kathy Veatch

    Father, I am so thankful for your sustaining grace and strength that get us through the tough times. And, while we never quite get over the grief that grips us, You make the journey easier by allowing us to get used to the changes in our lives one day at a time. I pray today for Clay and Amanda in this journey they are one that you will lift them up and fill them with incredible strength and patience with Wyatt and Ava, for grace to walk one day at a time because life is so daily and for comfort from Your Holy Spirit for their souls deepest places. Thank you for extending mercy to them at this hour of their need and for placing your angels there when they are needed. In Your Name I pray, Amen

  3. Pam

    Hopefully, you can “crash” when you get home. The kids will be glad to see their cribs–they sort of have a love-hate relationship with their beds! Remember Nana can be in KC to provide a break for the weary parents in a few hours time!

  4. I want to say something, and I want to say it in a way that doesn’t conform to the usual sentiments used to help ease the pain of a loss that any parent knows cannot be lessened by anything, least of all words. That is not to say that the loving outreach of those that have followed your story is in vain or useless. We all need each other, and if Lydia’s journey taught us nothing else, it should be just that: we all need each other. sometimes, the rigth words just dont exist. But still, i’d like to say something, if I may…

    There is no doubt that Lydia’s brief stay served many purposes to those who knew her personally and the rest of us who learned to know her and love her through the words of your blog. I think, too, as the days and weeks and even years pass by, that some of the Purpose she was meant to extend to the world will continue to unfold and make more sense.

    She was brave. She was tough. She endured more than most people will in a long life. All of this is true. And I am not saying (writing) anything that has not been expressed hundreds of times over because of its truth.

    So, what I want to say – as a parent that cannot imagine taking a breathe without my son – is that you and Clay have shown the world what real courage is; what real strength is. The selflessness that the two of you are exhibiting on behalf of Lydia’s siblings is astounding to me. I cannot imagine the will required to face each day as it comes. I cannot imagine the strength required to mask the worst kind of pain so that Ava and Wyatt can have the happiest childhoods possible under these circumstances.

    And what I want to say even more is that the two of you have to allow yourselves to mourn. When I look at the pictures of the balloon release, the sadness in Clay’s eyes is almost too painful to look at. And there is something else there, too. It looks like anger. And if it is, who can blame him? Or you? Please take the time to cry and throw things and yell and scream if need be. Those of us that try our hardest to have faith in God – and through that faith, we try to make sense out of the chaos – sometimes feel like it’s safest to try to maintain the faith no matter what instead of asking – demanding – the “WHY?!” we so long to know. Sometimes the anger may even lead to bigger questions about existence that we don’t want to admit we have. but it’s okay. God is a parent, too. And just like a good parent waits (until we feel they are ready) to answer certain questions that our children have, so does God sometimes wait to show us what we long to know and see. And just as we do not get angry with our kids for asking, neither does God grow tired of us, nor does God stop loving us should we throw a tantrum His/Her way.

    Reading your blog, following your story has been a gift. Your ability to use humor and sarcasm to make light of a heavy situation is amazing to me. Somewhere along the line, you developed superior survival skills, and I am in awe of you. Thank you for sharing. And while we all know how special Lydia was (is), I hope you know how incredibly special YOU are. You’re kind of my hero, actually.

    • kristen welborn

      Well said and what a beautiful post

    • Thank you for that perfect response. I’ve read it and reread it several times and it makes me smile.

  5. Monika Montgomery

    What a week you have had! Thinking of you. Your nurse Monika

    • Thanks Monika. Wyatt and Ava ask daily “where MonKa go?” and I try to explain your taking care of other boys and girls. I’ve had days where I look at the clock a little after 9 and wonder why you’re late. We miss you as well.

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