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Losing a Child: Always Andy's Mom

As a pediatrician, married mom of three biological children and one foster son, my life was busy, rushing off to my office four days a week, seeing patients for three and working as a medical director of a local physician organization for one. I balanced this with rushing off to shuttle my kids to after sports and other after school activities. All of this changed one day in August of 2018 when my 14 year old son, Andy, was killed in a car accident. I felt like my life was over, and in some ways it was over, and a new life was forced to begin in its place. 

Grief is seldom discussed openly in our culture, and the death of a child makes people feel even more uncomfortable. On this blog and podcast, ‘Losing a Child: Always Andy’s Mom’, the topic is approached openly and honestly, speaking to people who have lost loved ones and experts who help care for them. Whether you are a parent experiencing loss or someone who wants to support another going through this tragedy, this blog and podcast strives to offer hope and help.

Apr 29, 2021

Pregnancy with your first baby should be a fun, exciting time. For Farhana, unfortunately, this fun time lasted for only the first 22 weeks. It was at that ultrasound when Farhana's life was forever changed. She and her husband discovered that their firstborn daughter had a congenital heart defect. Eesha, though, was a fighter, spunky and stubborn from the beginning. That fight served her well through many hospitalizations and surgeries, but eventually, Farhana lost her tough, little warrior. 

Farhana said that Eesha taught her so much about how to live in her short little life. She taught her to fully appreciate life and to live in the moment. After Eesha's death, Farhana and her husband turned to the arts and music for healing. Farhana says that although she previously described herself as not at all a spiritual person, she began to experience and notice little things that just 'shouldn't' happen, little gifts from Eesha. Farhana was forever changed.

Last year, Farhan decided to try her hand at children's illustrations and actually took a class taught by an amazing woman in Toronto. She imagined what little Eesha would look like had she lived and created a character - a 7 year old Eesha - complete with all of the scars that she had on her little body. She named her a 'heart warrior,' and labeled all of her 'battle scars.'

During those first months of COVID, Farhana found herself feeling more down and alone. She looked at the mirror one day and saw the many affirmations that she had written to herself over the years. She decided to match these positive little sayings with her little Eesha character. The result was beautiful and inspirational to so many. The little characters were turned into posters, magnets and even a book.

In addition to the affirmation series, Farhana also does commissioned artwork in her Life After Loss series. This artwork is done for individual families after the loss of a loved one. All artwork is done without a specific charge. Farhana asks only that a donation be made to Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto, the amazing hospital that treated her amazing little warrior. All of her art can be found on her website, She is truly an inspirational woman.