One moment Anna was getting ready to celebrate her little boy’s fourth birthday. The next, she’s trying to figure out how to live without him.
The curly-haired kiddo with the world’s cheekiest grin choked on a toy ball that Anna had bought to pop into the goodie bags for his party on the weekend.
And just like that, in a blink, the family’s life changed in the most tragic, heartbreaking way.
‘Forever three, forever free’
Anna and Simon Davis are the parents of three beautiful little people, with another on the way. Anna is also the owner of holistic play store, The Small Folk.
Then one day a post appeared on The Small Folk Instagram page that stopped many a scroller in their tracks. Anna and Simon’s eldest son Alby, an almost four-year-old with a mop of angelic blond waves and a cheeky grin, had died.
“Yesterday afternoon, our beautiful, beautiful Alby, our darling baby boy, grew wings and flew from this earth,” Anna wrote. “Minutes pass like hours and the gaping hole in our lives and hearts is completely incomprehensible. We adore you beyond belief, our sweet little fox. Forever three, forever free.”
Horror and heartbreak
The shock, horror and heartbreak was immediate. Days prior, Anna had posted about Alby and his new bed linen. And now this?
In the hours that followed, as word spread and hearts broke amongst the Instagram community of mamas and makers, a GoFundMe page was set up by a friend of the family.
“On Monday afternoon, the unimaginable for any parent occurred,” the page began. “Darling Alby was playing with a bouncy ball that had arrived earlier that morning, in a package filled with party favours for his upcoming 4th birthday celebrations.
“The ball became stuck in his windpipe, preventing his ability to breathe, and in a matter of seconds, despite his mama’s frantic attempts to save him, he passed away in her arms.”
The GoFundMe page, set up to help ease the financial burden for the family during this time, has already smashed through its initial target of $100,000 as word spread across Instagram.
Events like this smack us straight in the chest. As parents, we are given an explicit reminder of the fragility we try and push to the back of our minds. As mothers, the sense of loss being felt by one within the ‘tribe’, is almost overwhelming. We hug our kids tighter, in my case, sneaking in to lie next to each of them in bed, just listening to the sound of their breathing, a glorious reminder of how full of life they are.