This is the first Mother's Day Dorsey and son Josey celebrated without Rivera.

Olivia Harvey
May 10, 2021 @ 11:43 am
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ryan and naya
Credit: Jonathan Leibson / Stringer, Getty Images

It's been 10 months since Glee star Naya Rivera tragically drowned in Southern California's Lake Piru during what was supposed to be a peaceful afternoon of boating with her 5-year-old son Josey. Celebrating their first Mother's Day without Rivera was difficult for Josey and his father, Rivera's ex-husband Ryan Dorsey. And in a bittersweet tribute, Dorsey says he is not yet able to say "happy Mother's Day," but he can thank Rivera for being an incredible mom.

"We can't say the word happy but we'll say thank you for being a mother & giving me this sweet amazing boy," Dorsey wrote in the caption of his May 9th post. He shared a photo of Rivera and Josey about to dig into a dessert while out to dinner a few years ago.

"This broke me," Rivera's friend and Glee costar Heather Morris commented on Dorsey's post. "I love you." Glee's Jenna Ushkowitz added a string of heart emojis in support.

Rivera and Dorsey were married from 2014 through 2018, and Dorsey now holds sole custody of their son. But that doesn't mean he's raising him alone. Dorsey and Josey have a huge support system of extended family and friends and they were lucky enough to celebrate with Grammy, Dorsey's mother, on Mother's Day.

"Happy Mother's Day Grammy...Thanks for all the support, unconditional love, all the help, your patience, thoughtfulness, and everything you do," Dorsey captioned another Mother's Day pic. "We ❤️you."

Mother's Day may not get easier to celebrate as time goes on for grieving families like the Dorseys. But the pain from loss will hopefully be replaced with fond memories of when Rivera was there to celebrate with her loved ones. In July, Dorsey wrote on Instagram, "Life is all about good times and bad times but with Josey it makes the bad a little less so because a part of you will always be with us," adding, "He'll never forget where he came from."