A moving funeral to farewell infant Jayden

The sad couple pay respects to their infant son

The sad couple pay respects to their infant son

It is a beautiful Adelaide Hills garden setting and we are gathered in rows of white plastic chairs, not for a wedding, but for the saddest event.   There is  a tiny white coffin sitting on a lace-covered table cloth  at the funeral of my niece Chelsea’s infant son, who was stillborn a week ago.   Chelsea married her husband, Allan, last year, so this new marriage is gripped by tragedy. Allan and his brother have carried the coffin, with its pretty blue-ribboned bouquet down the shady garden path  into this quiet glen.  The grieving young mother followed in a lovely white lace dress, to match the coffin.  There is a silver plaque on the coffin stating that this little baby has been named Jayden, and although he did not take one breath, he is loved very much.  His young parents are heart-broken.  Chelsea’s infant child had died in her womb, at 37 weeks’ gestation. Labour was induced and when he was born the umbilical cord was wound tightly around his neck.  The tragedy is that Jayden was perfect in every way – 48.5 cms long and weighing 2.5 kgs – with a well-formed body and a mass of black hair.  But, just a week after her fun-filled baby shower, Chelsea noticed that her baby had stopped moving.  Tragically, at the Women’s and Children’s Hospital the ultrasound revealed a still little heart.

Flowers, a teddy and an iconic cross decorate Jayden's coffin

Flowers, a teddy and an iconic cross decorate Jayden’s coffin

The minister, a young woman, read a heart-felt letter from Chelsea to her son and we wept at her poignant words of loss.  Both grandmothers – including my sister Anne – also spoke of their sadness and we were deeply moved by their words, that they missed not knowing the colour of his eyes. They promised him that he would never be forgotten.    Allan, Jayden’s grieving father,  wrote more profound words of sorrow, read by my nephew.  After the minister’s address and her prayers, we listened in silence to beautiful contemporary Christian music.  Then,  it was time for the mourners to file past Jayden’s coffin, to touch it and say “goodbye darling boy”. May you be an angel in God’s infinite heaven.



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