Facing Heartbreak On First Father’s Day Without One Triplet, Couple Finds Kindness
29 June 2017 Humanity
You really never know, when you look at what appears to be the happiest and most blessed of families, what’s behind their smiles and seeming normality. Such was the case for Dan and Maxi Cortez on Father’s Day this year, when they took their two daughters, Harper and Harlow, out for what appeared, at least, to be a celebratory event.
But the background to the day was a much sadder story. Less than a year before, they had had three babies, triplets: the two girls, plus a boy named Landon. Only two weeks after birth, Landon developed some unusual symptoms, and like any panicked new parents, Dan and Maxi rushed the baby back to the hospital where he’d been born.
But there was to be no happy ending to this story. Tragically, baby Landon, who’d been diagnosed with a rare form of bacterial meningitis, passed away at just seven weeks old. Needless to say, the once-joyful family was devastated beyond all words.
Which brings us back to Father’s Day 2016, and Dan, Maxi, and babies Harper and Harlow, all gathered together at the local Arkansas Red Lobster in Cabot. When their bill came, it was marked as “paid,” with a note hand-written on the back.
“Enjoy your babies, they don’t stay little long. From the family across from you, God bless you,” it said.
Of course, the anonymous bill-payers had no idea about the family’s tragic and recent loss. And that’s what pushed Maxi, the young mom, to post to Facebook to thank the couple’s donors, who they’d never even met at the restaurant.
“To you we looked like just a family of 4 celebrating the most important man in our lives,” said Maxi of the Father’s Day meal. “Little did you know last year we celebrated as a family of 5.”
She went on to explain how they had lost one of their triplets less than a year prior, making this Father’s Day the hardest day of their lives since they lost little Landon.
“I hope this post reaches you, so one day you might know that what might seemed like a small gesture of kindness to you, made celebrating my wonderful husband just a little bit easier this year!” Maxi added on her social media post.