I have always found that the lead up to Christian's birthday/anniversary of his death was so much harder the actual day itself.
In the lead up to his first two birthdays I felt physically ill just thinking about it. The day itself has only ever been beautiful. Sad of course but very beautiful.
If I can recommend anything to help you on your child/ren's birthday/anniversary it would be to plan ahead.
Here are some ideas of things that you could do.
Have a balloon release.
Having a balloon release is a beautiful way to celebrate and remember your child. They are incredibly emotional but very healing. If you have other children you could attach letters from them to the balloons. I would recommend doing this at a special place if you can. Some where that is an open space like a park or the beach so that you can watch the balloons fly off into the horizon.
Plant a special tree.
Planting a tree whether it is at your home or a place that allows you to plant a tree is such a special way to remember your child. It also gives you a special place for you to sit and visit at. Especially if your child/ren were cremated and they do not have a final resting place.
When choosing a tree look for one that will suit the environment that it will be planted in. Choose a strong healthy tree.
Anyone who knows me, would tell you that I take a ridiculous amount of photos. On Christian's birthday I always photograph the sunrise and sunset. I keep the photos in his birthday album.
Donate a memory box.
In the lead up to your child/ren's birthday/anniversary you could contact the hospital your child was born at (if your child was born at home, you could contact the hospital of your choice) and find out whether or not they will accept a memory box from you. Creating a memory box will give a newly bereaved family something to take home from the hospital.
Things to put in the box:
Two blankets (one for the baby to be wrapped in and one for the family to keep)
A small photo album
A Teddy Bear
A candle and candle holder
A card to say that the memory box was donated in loving memory of your baby.
Have a special dinner.
I found in the past we failed to plan anything for dinner time. We planned our day well but we had nothing planned for the night. The night time for me was the hardest part of the day. I recommend doing something in the evening. Have a special dinner, enjoy some good food and even have a cake for desert. Have people over to be with you. People who have comforted you in the loss of your child/ren.
Have some quiet time.
Light a candle for your child/ren. If you can on the evening of there birthday sit outside and look up at the stars. Play some music. Write down your feelings. Let the tears come out.
I hope that these ideas have sparked an idea of your own heart. I wish you all the love in the world for your child/ren's special day.