Due Dates are never set in stone, they’re estimated, a rough idea of when you get to meet your baby.
Her discharge date,
that she could have stayed and played.
Our little Mayflower
But she died.
Here we are,the final day of the Capture Your Grief project. A month that has been able to give awareness, let people,friends old and new how it is to be Melody’s Mum. Of course it is never “just one month”. But it is a snippet to just some of the emotions, that can be presented after losing a baby. I’m aware I am incredibly open, but I am also very aware on how people question (not always to my face) my openness, aware of how uncomfortable people also are too.
I wanted to teach the world about the child, I don’t even know. To tell you how hard it is to love someone, you barely had chance to meet, the regrets surrounding her death and how we dealt with things after that we cannot change. I don’t want you to be uncomfortable, just as much as I don’t want to be the mum with a dead baby.
I speak about her often, not only because she is our little girl, but at times I get scared I’ll forget her, sometimes my head builds a wall between my memories of her, and her not existing.
Sometimes I wonder whether she did at all, then I see the pictures.
I’m supposed to think about her every day, you know exactly as you do with your living children, exactly as I do her siblings; you know their whereabouts, what they had for tea, when they’ll have a bath.
Honestly, I don’t think of her every day, I don’t talk about her often either, although I am sure you think even that is too much…but not as much as I should, had she been alive, but I have nothing new to share.
I can’t even share my four early losses any more because my brain can’t focus or concentrate on them. My heart has shut away from them. Because my head only sees Melody.
Today whilst everyone made their gardens into cemeteries, fake headstones and dressed their children as skeletons, I, we visited a real cemetery, dressed a real headstone and well…
There are days, many days where I believe Melody’s story is not ours; when I tell people I have four children it is easier, it is quick and painless.
This year, I’ve been detached from the project, I know from previous years readers have also been detached, due to numbers dropping, when I use this project to heal, but nobody is listening.
It is boring, it is sad. But I am your friend, your family member, she is our child.
Reflecting on baby bereavement as a whole not just this month. Life really does move on.
Time does heal provided you’re not the bereaved, provided it isn’t your story.
I put my trust into people after she died, when I shouldn’t have.
I expected far too much from people to understand and be kind, not use her death for their own gains or against me. When on reflection the only people who truly understand are those who are walking this path.
This project is insightful, even to me. It is an education. Learning from mums who have lost their babies but not in the same way, to know that we’re not alone but our losses, our pain is all individual and unique.
Nothing is wrong, nothing is right in how we, as bereaved parents (dads matter too) choose to pick up the Cellotape and fix our broken hearts.
Nobody has the right to tell us either.
Today was about performing an act of kindness. To give away a bit of love.
I failed. I’ve barely left the house in days. So random acts of kindness hasn’t been always possible.
I do like to think since this journey has begun,that I have successfully given love and shown kindness where I can. Sometimes planned,others spontaneous.
People need to be kind, no prompts,no subject pieces. Kindness goes a long way,particularly in this journey.
I’ve not been feeling myself this last week. So a healing,loving self care is how today for me went.
Even almost five years since she died, I still beat myself up over so much. I over think too much.
I feel at times suffocated by the way I can’t trust anyone or anything.
I do remind myself that our daughter died, but I always the think there are people worse off than me, then the brief compassion I may have for myself goes. When I speak about her, in raw form I always assume people think I am out to get sympathy, but actually I find it incredibly difficult to break the walls down to accept any form of sympathy. I don’t think it is a deserving thing. It is protection maybe, if I give in to compassion, I may just crumble. I don’t know.
I’m not sure where I am going with this.
How can I show compassion, when the people who do leave? There are so many times where I feel I simply don’t deserve it. My baby died. I left her with people I could trust.
I need to learn how to self care, how to give myself a break.
I’m really lost for words today…sorry.
Right from the word go I wanted to make a difference somehow.
There has been fundraising to some degree, it has been hard at times to gather the interest for people to support such a subject.
It has set me back within my grief,effects me in unexpected ways. I got to a point where I hated fundraising, that I was dishonouring Melody; her name,her life her death. Aside from people who wanted to help, it felt like the world just didn’t care.
I wanted to give up.
I can’t, I’m stubborn..
When we walked out of that hospital, no baby,no hope a bunch of leaflets a butter box and broken hearts. There was the odd card,the odd phone call. But eventually told we’d been bumped down the list. Told late losses,miscarriage,stillbirth and babies up to 5 days were who they usually dealt with.
I was angry and hurt that no one wanted to help us,after all our baby was here.
I wanted to offer that support to other parents,to break the silence to let no other family feel isolated.
There was nothing in my town.
I voiced my plans over and over, was offered an opportunity in 2014 to be part of a community project.
Venues were being sought after, it wasn’t until 2015 that it was found,the ball began to roll.
It has been a slow process, due to funding for the venue.
But in 2016,thanks to charity Towards Tomorrow Together, we teamed up and Melody’s Voices was born.
Again this has been slow,but we’ll get there, I am determined.
When we left the hospital,there should have been the support set up.
But now,my aim is to not let another family feel the way we did.
We are currently working on a fundraiser, a fundraiser I know I said I wouldn’t do. But our Mayor offered the local guildhall. And I have a couple of crazy friends,a mad husband and even madder town councillor on board.
I may not be able to save babies,to stop them dying.
I know Melody will help in our particular hospital.
But I want to make sure no other family,mum,dad feels alone.
We’re in this shit together.
I will sit and hold your hand,wipe away your tears,stand next to you in the silent darkness.
But I won’t let you feel alone.