Sunday, 24 July 2016

Coral: Right Where I Am 2016: 2 years 4 months 23 days

It’s been too long going in life broken-hearted. Learning to live with a part of me missing is the most difficult thing I have faced in my existence. I feel conflicted by it because there’s some sort of gratefulness despite the tragedy. You see, before I couldn’t bear when others called me strong. Now I understand why others see me as such. This challenge that life threw at me has taught me to face the impossible. How can you live despite having a loss so big that defines you? I’m privilege to have the answer. Even though I wish I could go back in time to change the outcome, the lesson learned is invaluable.

My love for Luna continues growing with time. I learned that she doesn't have to be physically here for me to love her. I’m fortunate to understand this, because the meaning of love has been forever redefined. It means an essence so powerful and strong that even death can’t break it. I guess my eyes are now open to see what’s in front of me, understanding God’s love.

Two years and a half of constant change; because relationships, dreams and goals were somehow shaped the day she died. Now I only care about being true to myself and live freely. I’m more aware now of the things I can control to give meaning to my life. I quit my profession knowing the passion for it was never there. I find myself cutting all negative relationships to build a better future with those who truly care while I continue educating others about seeing death as a natural part of life. At times, I forget that I am a mother, there’s no vivid reminder except for the stretch marks marked on my body. This is the part that truly scares me, not feeling connected to motherhood and waking up one day without thinking of her. Even though she is always in my mind and not a day goes by without me missing her.


You can read Coral’s previous posts here:

Right Where I Am 2015: 11 months 2 weeks 6 days
Right Where I Am 2014: 4 months 28 days

Saturday, 23 July 2016

Claire: Right Where I Am 2016: 4 years 3 months

Since losing Laura I've gone on to have twin boys who are now 2 and a half years old. They fill my days, often with tantrums and demands but just as often with laughter and squeals of fun. I talk to them about their older sister, although I know it will be years yet before they understand. They know where she is though. We visit her grave around once a week, often before I take them to playgroup, as the cemetery is on the same road as the Children's Centre. They say her name as we pull into the road. They say her name when I buy flowers. This much they understand.

Laura would be the age now that I was when I started school. She would have been starting primary school this September had she lived. I cannot help but wonder how she would have felt about this. Would she have be confident like her older sister, or would she have worried about being separated from me.

There is not a day that goes by without me thinking of her. Last thing at night especially I feel the need to think of her. Sort of like a mental 'tucking in'. I know nobody thinks of her like I do. I know people actually forget that she ever existed. I've come to terms with that now. That's their problem, not mine. I was lucky enough to have her. Lucky enough to feel her moving around inside me and lucky enough to cuddle her for those first precious hours before we realised she was so desperately unwell. She has changed me without a doubt. I have no idea whether anything exists beyond this life but I am actually ok about this. What else can I be?

On the days where my twins look at me and their faces are identical to their oldest sister, I wonder what my only dark haired child would have looked like. I miss her every day. I'm grateful for having had her, for the lessons loss has taught me and I'm grateful for the friendships I've made along the way with other mums that just 'get' me.


You can read Claire’s previous posts here:

Right Where I Am 2014: 2 years 2 months 3 weeks
Right Where I Am 2013: 1 year 2 months 2 weeks 2 days

Friday, 22 July 2016

Julz: Right Where I Am 2016: 4 years 3 months

Inside Out. It's a Disney film, about emotions from the emotions themselves.
Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear and Disgust.
All important roles in how our moods take us. Most importantly how we cope with things that change our lives, and almost break us.
Having seen the film, several times over now, I can understand the feeling of losing one's marbles.

My personality islands collapsed, the day she died. No warning, I couldn't stop them. Lost, forever.

For me, 4 years into this journey, I can associate myself with all 5 of the emotions. Some less than others.

Disgust, I guess how some parents take their precious children for granted. I feel disgusted in myself sometimes. When I have days, where I'm not quite coping. I shout, I snap. I somewhat alienate myself.

Fear. It goes without saying, the fear of not only losing my other children, but my husband, my friends. Fear paralyses me at times. I have to control it. It can take over, but it isn't allowed.

Anger. I don't get that raw anger very often any more. Because we should have had a different outcome, the anger was eating me, tearing me apart bit by bit, as if the bigger picture of our daughter dying wasn't enough, but the anger, drilling through my very being. Don't get me wrong, I get angry, really bloody angry at the whole having a dead child, I'm allowed, but it's far more contained. I'm lucky to have a husband who will let me release it, by talking, crying. It's not often any more.

Joy and Sadness.
Together? In the head of a bereaved mum.
As above I said my personality islands collapsed, fell silently away, as she died in our arms. There were no controls, no brakes. It happened.
I've had to start again.
New hobbies, new train of thought, new friendship circles, and how I spent my time with those friends, family. The shape of our family changed.
I never expected joy to be part of my emotions again, ever.
But I refuse to have Melody be the little blue person.

This time of year, I find just as hard as the part of the year my brain associates her with.
September to May. There is always something attached to her, from a positive pregnancy test, to her birth, her anniversary, discharge date and due date. I no longer make a big deal over the smaller dates, I always will for her birthday and anniversary. But they're all still related in some way.
So, when June arrives, it's like a strange come down. Every thing I do gets touched by sadness, core memory after core memory affected by sadness.
It shouldn't be. I've, we've been punished enough.
I do believe joy and sadness can coexist. There's a balance.
But people have to remember everyone grieves differently.
If I want to ball my eyes out 4 years after my daughter dying. I will. I don't need therapy or medicine.
But laughing doesn't mean I'm over her either.
I've found a good balance, albeit right or wrong. It is right for me.

Right now. I'm missing Melody. That will never change.

She is my bundle of joy, cuddled in a blanket of sadness.


You can read Julz' previous posts here:

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Stacey: Right Where I Am 2016: 3 years 3 months 2 weeks 2 days

Another year has passed so quickly, here I am again sat staring at a blank screen, with deafening silence all around me, wondering what on earth I’m going to write this time. When you spend almost everyday trying to build up your walls so you can’t get hurt it’s often difficult to then brake them down to figure out how you’re actually feeling.

Apparently, there are 5 stages of grieving; shock/denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. So maybe this is chance for me to explore which stage I am at. My initial thoughts are I’ve reached acceptance, I’m there finally, I have created a post babyloss life and I am genuinely happy. I have 2 healthy rainbows, Florence (October 2014) and Albert (January 2016), I have trained as a SANDS befriender and with the aid of my amazing colleagues have set up a local playgroup to support families whom have lost children/siblings/grandchildren/nieces/nephews/cousins. I must have reached acceptance to be able to do those things right??

(Picture credit to tweetconnection)


No way, the sonographer is wrong, my baby is fine there is not a chance my baby is going to die, she has got this wrong, any minute now she is going to stop telling me this and laugh it will all be some sick cruel awful joke. This is not happening to my baby, this happens to other people not me.

I definitely went through that stage.


Why did my baby have to die? What have I done so wrong in my life to deserve this? Why didn’t we get to keep her, she was planned, loved and wanted. Why me!

It’s safe to say I went through this stage as well.


Please let this be a dream, I’ll do anything.


Blanked out from my memory, but yes that horrific stage definitely happened.


Maybe I’m there but I’m still experiencing elements of anger and bargaining.  Do we ever truly reach this stage or do we always flit between the stages?

Perhaps next year I will have the answers. But for now I’d give anything to have all 3 of my children.


You can read Stacey’s previous posts here:

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Lynne: Right Where I Am 2016: 2 years 11 months

(written 20th June 2016)

One month from today will be Findlay’s 3rd birthday. Three years since the day he came into the world tiny, silent and still. The day my heart broke in two. That pain has never gone away, never dulled, never changed. I can be getting on with life quite happily then all of a sudden wham it hits me again and for a time I am once again broken. Other times it feels like it’s all been a dream, like looking in on someone else’s life. That sends me into a panic, leaving me terrified. Terrified that I’m going to forget any of the memories we have with Findlay, precious memories of the very short time we got to spend with him. I don’t think that’s something that will ever change.

A lot has changed though. There was a time I would refer to that day as the worst day of my life. I can no longer refer to it as such. It is, without a doubt, one of the hardest days of my life but it was the day I became a mummy. A mummy to such a precious, beautiful, loved little boy. Sometimes I still feel bitter and think it’s unfair that he never got a chance. My perfect little boy was never going to make it but I am blessed that he came into my life, changing me forever. I am privileged to be his mummy.

I wear my heart on my sleeve and I have always spoke openly about Findlay. I have shared photos on social media and have always felt touched by people’s kindness to acknowledge Findlay. Through time, with this support, I have felt stronger. Then earlier this year someone reported a photo of Findlay which I posted on Facebook. The actions of that one click shocked me to the core and left me feeling devastated that anyone could be so heartless, so cruel to my baby son, to his memory. I appreciate baby loss can make people feel uncomfortable but I am proud of both of my sons and want to show them off to the world. This has made me more wary of what I post and although it won’t stop me posting, I live in fear that it could happen again. I want to share my baby with the world but it is also my duty to protect him. It has left me feeling betrayed and suspicious of my Facebook ‘friends’. If I’m honest I hadn’t actually realised until now how much this is still affecting me. I truly hope whoever reported my precious photo, my precious son, never has to endure this heartache. The longing to hold my baby again. Just one more time.

Thankfully this lack of compassion, lack of understanding is not the norm and I am so blessed with the support I have received from family and friends. As I said last year, much of my healing has come from Findlay’s little brother, Cameron. My precious, handsome, clever, little rainbow who makes me smile like I never imagined. We will celebrate Cameron’s 2nd birthday on 17 July, three days before his big brother’s 3rd birthday. Such a bittersweet time but a time to celebrate the birth of both our boys. Our whole world.

Right where I am... I am strong. I am vulnerable. I am broken. I am happy. I am sad. Ultimately though I am lucky. Lucky to be mummy to two precious and special little boys and no matter what life throws at me they are my reason to keep going. I live my life to make them proud and I hope one day they will be.

Published 20th July 2016 – Happy 3rd birthday Findlay, our beautiful baby son. You live on in our hearts forever and your brother will know all about his special big brother. We love you to the moon and back Mummy, Daddy and Cameron xxxxx


You can read Lynne’s previous post here:

Thursday, 7 July 2016

Kazzandra: Right Where I Am 2016: 3 months followed by now

I suffered the loss of my first pregnancy in March this year at 5 weeks 4 days. Slipped away almost before I knew what was happening. I'm currently awaiting surgical management for the loss of my second pregnancy at 7 weeks 3 days (I should now be 10 weeks). I found out at an early scan yesterday that my baby's heart stopped beating at around 7 weeks 3 days. What a sucker-punch that was. We were so excited because we'd seen the heartbeat at 6 weeks, and I was sure everything was ok this time.

I met my new nephew yesterday. And I couldn't bring myself to hold him. Just couldn't do it, because that would have undone me. I put a brave face on you see, to help celebrate my father-in-law's birthday. How could I hold someone else's baby when my own was lying dead in my belly? No. Too painful. I smiled said 'maybe later' and was tasked by my other SIL to help bath my nieces. Kind, sweet, funny. They distracted me for an hour or so. Then I went back downstairs, and as the children went to bed, I couldn't stand to sit there anymore. Alone. I needed to be alone. And I felt so damn tired, it was a struggle to drive the two miles home. I crawled into bed at 8pm, fell asleep them woke two hours later, staring out of the window from the sofa. Finally went back to bed and slept from 3-6am.

Today I had it all again at work. The sympathetic faces, the platitudes 'It happened for a reason. You'll try again, don't lose heart.' I smiled kindly and thanked them for their concern, touched by the warmth of their hugs. Cake and a hot drink helped a bit, filled the empty space in my stomach and appeased the gnawing, raw hurt momentarily. The routine, getting through the day on autopilot, smiling a bit, laughing on cue at jokes. I'm not better yet, but I have come up a step from the dark depths of my pit of  sorrow. I'm raw, hurt and a bit stuck - the tears won't all come at once. But I've always believed that tears push out all the sadness and despair and make room for more happiness.

I want my husband, just to hold him and feel his solid, reassuring warmth, arms wrapped around me, holding me steady. Remind me I'm still a loving person, remind me I can still be loved without it hurting.

Will we try again? Yes, I think so. Underneath all the fear and pain, there is a heart still beating. That heart is strong and will keep on loving, no matter what. There's more than enough room to take what life throws at me, and enough love to love my angel babies as well as my take-home babies.

Sunday, 3 July 2016

Lindsay: Right Where I Am 2016: 2 years 11 months 1 day followed by 1 year 2 months 20 days followed by 7 months 24 days

I find this a difficult blog to write as there are so many different dates to consider. The members of my invisible family seem to be growing at an alarming rate, yet to an outsider it looks like it's still just my husband and I.

At the time of writing this it's been 2 years, 11 months and 1 day since my first loss – my son, Hunter. It is 1 year, 2 months and 20 days since I lost my first daughter Esmae and 7 months, 24 days since I said goodbye to my second daughter Freya. In between losing Hunter and Esmae I had an early loss and since losing Freya I've suffered another early miscarriage. Whilst those two little ones were no less important than the babies we got to meet, hold and name, I somehow seem to cope with the early losses much better. I grieve for all my babies as a whole and I try to see each pregnancy, no matter how short lived, as signs to not give up.

Last year when I wrote my first 'Right Where I Am...' blog I was trying to look forward and to be hopeful. Since then I've been fortunate enough to have fallen pregnant twice more, although I still have no living children. Whilst I'm still just as hopeful that things will eventually work out for us, I feel as if I'm only just clinging onto that hope for dear life.

Over the past three years my life has changed in ways I never could have imagined. I have felt my heart shatter, more than once, unleashing an unimaginable, indescribable pain and I feel alone in it all. My husband and I feel alone in it all. We feel more and more isolated from those around us. Sometimes it's as if everyone has forgotten, or they just don't dare ask how we're doing because they don't know how we are managing to cope, but somehow we do.

No matter how cheated I feel, I never feel angry at the world for the hand we have been dealt. I do, however, find myself feeling increasingly bitter and envious of those around us. Those who seemingly sail through their pregnancies without a care and then get to take their baby home at the end of it all. They get to experience it all as it should be. I tell myself that deep down I am happy for them, but I honestly don't know if that's true. I get so angry at myself for not feeling truly happy for them and for having to distance myself from them, but it just hurts too much.

Pregnancy and birth announcements can reduce me to tears, probably more so now than a couple of years ago. I remind myself I'm not crying because they are happy and I am not. I reassure myself I'm crying because their announcements remind me of what I once had and have lost. There have been so many announcements in recent years I've lost track. It's far easier to count those around us who don't have children or aren't pregnant at the moment. I can count them with one hand still firmly in my pocket. I feel as if my husband and I are being left behind.

The spells of feeling 'normal' seem to be lasting longer these days, which is nice. I've even caught myself having the odd fleeting moment where I've forgotten any of this has happened. This isn't necessarily a bad thing and I don't feel guilty for momentarily forgetting. It's strangely comforting; to know this will always be with me, but I can live with it more easily now. I know there will always be reminders of what my husband and I are missing out on and they will always be hard to deal with. The other day I was walking home from work and there was a little girl, no more than two years old, and her mum walking slowly down the hill towards me. The little girl wandered off course and her mum called her name to stop her from venturing too far – she called out my daughter's name and it pulled me right back to reality. Little jolts like that are hard to prepare yourself for.

We've been through so much I sometimes think it seems almost fictional. Yet, I live each day with pieces of me missing and it doesn't matter what the future brings, those pieces will always be missing from me.

At this point last year I was hopeful to start trying again and I will feel that way again soon, but for now, a little over a month on from my last loss, I need to focus on myself. Even just for a few more weeks so I have one less thing to worry about. Whilst I need to keep going, keep trying and keep moving forward, the tally of pregnancies which have been cut short, due to a whole host of separate reasons, sticks with me.

Our family is growing more quickly than anyone else's around us, but I'm the one still sitting at the computer in our spare room desperately wishing it was the nursery we had planned, pictured and shopped for. I'm the one who can't look at another little baby for fear of forgetting what my own babies looked like or in case they snap me back into reality and make me remember the raw pain that can only come from loving so strongly and which I try to push deep down each day.

Sometimes I think it's a good thing we can't predict the future. I am here, almost 3 years on from losing my first baby and I'm glad that I didn't know then what I know now. I'm so glad I didn't know what was in store for us. In a strange way I wouldn't change the past, but I could never have pictured this would be where I am right now.


You can read Lindsay’s previous post here:

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Jennifer: Right Where I Am 2016: 1 year exactly

(written 9th June 2016)

I still can't believe it's been a whole year since my perfect little girl was stillborn at full term. Happy birthday Beth, I love you more with every passing day. Not a single day goes by where I don't think about you or stop and stare at your pictures around the house.

The pain hasn't eased - I never expected it to.

Where am I? Well I've decorated the house for Beth's first birthday celebrations, balloons, banners, and some cards and presents have come in the post. Cake iced and ready to eat… Everything is ready except my birthday girl is missing…

I never expected to be where I am right now this time last year. I've only managed to get through it because I have my rainbow baby in my arms. Beth's little sister is here, born on the 20th May… 2 babies less than a year apart… One in heaven and one in my arms.

I'm filled with so much happiness, yet so much pain and heartache. Violet looks so much like her big sister especially when she is sleeping. I'm scared of leaving her for too long incase she's taken from me too. I'm trying to grasp every single moment I have with her just incase. Every single nappy change and extreme tiredness I am embracing just incase. Plenty of photos and videos taken just incase.

So here I am… Realising just how much I'm missing out on with Beth and maybe over protecting my little Violet. Pain and joy at the same time. So very hard.

But… happy 1st birthday Beth, I hope wherever you are you can see how much we love you and wish you were here with us. Sweet dreams baby, another few items for your memory box until we meet again.

Love you more than I can ever possibly write or say X


You can read Jennifer’s previous post here:

Friday, 1 July 2016

Jo: Right Where I Am 2016: 1 year 2 weeks 4 days

I have tried to write this a few times over the last couple of weeks but it always seemed to be on a bad day, the days when it hurts to cry about them, what I produced was really bitter. In truth, on a bad day that is who I am the bitter person thinking "why me? Why my babies?"  With time I have realised it is fine to be that person. It is fine to be the person who wants to fill the house with their memory and ensure they aren't forgotten. I can be whoever I need to be to get through the day. Before the twins died I was level headed and it was commented how you always got me the same way.

As everyone who finds themselves on this site will know when your children die, it changes you. My life is now forever divided into before and after. My twins, Katie and Sophie, have taught me so much in the short time they were with us and even now as we come to terms with living without them. My girls made me a mum, the hardest kind of mum. Through being that mum I have made friends who have seen me at my very worst covered in tears and barely breathing as I have seen them the same way. Slowly those women picked me up and we all started walking forward. As hard as it is we all do keep moving forward often it's only when helping someone else we can see how far we have come and often how far we have left to go.

It has now been over year and on that day, the 9th May 2015, life stopped for me. I didn't really grasp that life carried on. Every morning when I woke up I had the horrible realisation that the nightmare I had was actually my reality. I went numb, I got dressed every morning as I had that day. It was a very warm day so for months I was wearing maxi dresses which elected some strange looks when wearing summer clothes in October. In the first year after Katie and Sophie's life I found hard as I approached all the anniversaries of the milestones in my pregnancy. It made it slightly easier when my husband and I discussed this time last year on tough days.

Now into the second year without them it is harder, these days last year where filled with so much pain. My own life only seemed to start again in February of this year when my little take home baby was born, 8 weeks early and weighing just 3lb 2oz, but she was perfect. After months of worry and tears, I had a baby in my arms. But Olivia does bring a lovely contrast of light and happiness, she looks so much like her sisters it is lovely. She is now nearly 16 weeks old and I am coming to accept that she is benefiting from the mum Katie and Sophie created. I know how precious each milestone is, when she smiled for the first time it was as if she was smiling for all three of them, she has such a hearty giggle. When she wakes me in the early hours of the morning I love her even more as I remember the night crying over the babies I would never hold again.

I know how lucky I am to have my take home baby and while no-one will ever replace her sisters, she brings a beautiful ray of hope into the difficult days. I like to think that somehow Olivia has know her sisters and that she will always two guardian angels looking over her.