Brittani Boren Leach is taking the stages of grief following her son’s death one step at a time.
Almost a month after the YouTube star revealed that her 3-month-old son Crew had died after being found unresponsive during a nap on Christmas Day, Leach shared a black-and-white photo of herself in her baby boy’s hospital bed, cradling the infant in one of his “last photos.”
“I can usually keep my feelings at bay during the day because I can easily distract myself. But in the evenings they hit me the hardest,” Leach, 29, captioned the heartbreaking image on Thursday. “I’m really sick of being a part of this stupid ‘club’ that no one wants to be in.”
She also preemptively shut down focus on who was behind the camera, writing, “And for that one person who will HAVE to ask who took this photo … yes this photo was taken by a volunteer at @nowilaymedowntosleep who offered to come to the hospital at 10pm to take a few last photos before we said our final ‘see you later’ the following day.”
Leach went on to admit there was “SO much” she wanted to address about how her candor over the years on her YouTube channel and social media relates to how she’s handling the recent tragedy, saying, “I’ve always shared openly about motherhood here on Instagram. It’s just natural to me, to express my emotions and grieve openly.”
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And her experiences have left her little tolerance for negativity from outsiders.
“If you’ve NEVER kissed your child goodbye forever outside of O.R. doors, or held your lifeless child’s body in your arms, or felt the deep dark hole that losing a child leaves in your heart … then any rude passive aggressive comments that you leave are from something very sick inside of you and I will pray for you,” Leach wrote. “The tone of this post may sound angry, and to every degree I think I have that right, it’s a stage of grief so they say.”
She also took the time to recognize those of her fans who have offered their support: “I do want to say THANK YOU to SO MANY OF YOU, for helping me get through this with your countless thoughts and prayers.”
“I’ve been living off of coffee and GrubHub thanks to so many kind people, and it is my mission going forward to bless anyone who may find themselves in my shoes one day,” Leach said. “And I hope you never do. 💔 #crewscrew”
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Leach detailed the tragedy in several Instagram posts, beginning Dec. 26. In the first post, she shared a photo of her hand holding baby Crew’s and wrote an emotional message in the caption about what had occurred on Christmas.
The following day, she announced the tragic news that Crew had died, sharing a photo of her cradling her baby boy’s body, with her husband Jeff beside her.
On Jan. 8, the mother revealed that she and her husband “laid our sweet baby boy to rest today, and a part of me went with him” alongside a two-photo post that showed little Crew’s casket and her other children at the funeral.
“We will always feel like we are missing a piece of our family, because we are,” Leach added in the caption. “And until we get to Heaven, I know he’s smiling, laughing and playing at the feet of Jesus.”