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  • Writer's pictureMarcus Kowal

Happy Birthday Liam

Happy birthday Liam. Another year has passed and today, you turn 9. I don't write would have turned, because you are part of every step, every breath, in every effort.

Every year, I find that the days leading up to your birthdays are hard, as the days get closer and the pain more raw. The happiest day of my life is also so strongly related to the hardest pain of my life. It is an intense mixture of emotions that is difficult to explain.

Your little siblings are growing up and becoming little human beings. It's so fascinating to see their different personalities. Nico, who is very thoughtful, curious, kind, and so sweet to his little sister. Luna, who is the wild one. She is brave and wears her heart on her sleeve. I see resemblances of us both, your mother and I, in them and it always makes me wonder what you would be like. I think you would be more like Nico because you were just as sweet, perhaps a little wilder. This year, they both competed in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for the first time and just last week, they did breakdancing in a talent performance. What sports would you have enjoyed? Would you have been up there with them? They have their friends at the gym and I love watching them interact with them and I often find myself looking at our older kids, in whose class you would now be and wonder who you would mostly play with and how you would interact with them. 

On this day, every year, we do a workout in your name, Liam’s Life WOD (Workout Of The Day). I find that it helps momentarily, to get to push through pain and to be with our community. People and gyms worldwide do it, to raise awareness and funds for your foundation, Liam’s Life Foundation, so that we can continue the fight for .05 Blood Alcohol Content, which we know will save over 2,000 lives a year. An insane number that we with 100% certainty know we could in theory start saving as of tomorrow. But every year, we continue to learn, adapt, and develop, in order to get one step closer to that goal and one of my own major learnings has been patience; It will take some time, but we will get there because we won't stop until we do.

A piece of the powerful poem “Invictus”, a poem that I much relate to:

And yet the menace of the years

      Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,

      How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate,

      I am the captain of my soul.

I miss you, Lilla Bebisen #rememberLiam

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