Off Guard

Leaving May,the month of what ifs that stare me in the face each year. 15th should have been her coming home day. I let it pass. 22nd had we made it to term would have been our c section date. Maybe 4 years but I remember. Albeit quieter than normal. But I remember.

The dates,the story I know it is coming I set myself up. My brain is geared to protect me now. Only as with everything protection isn’t always 100%.

Before I go on,this isn’t a sign of weakness,or that I crave attention. Or that I’m one of “those crazy bereaved parents” you know the ones the TV would have you imply,or people who don’t know you very well would think.

These things just apart of my new skin, a part of who I am.

Standing in a small area as I have done since March, I’m standing a little a way from the rest of the group. As I watch our rainbow play amongst her friends, eager for the big heavy door to open.
A place I found hard in the beginning, trusting professionals isn’t in my train of thought. But we are overcoming this.
This was my biggest thing.
But as I stand there, 7 pairs of eyes looking keen,excited to learn and play. To make friends,make memories.
Then it suddenly dawns on me,some of these children are four.
Four.
The age that Melody should have been.
They are her shadows. The mini people who would have started reception with her in September.
She should have been amongst that group,along side her little sister. Cheeky girls together.
But of course it is her rainbow who runs along side them. Who is good friends with the little girl,who I remember her mum sat in antenatal, rubbing her tum,I gave her a shy smile,as I knew things were going wrong with Melody.

I could feel the lump,the heavy breathing,the panic that I’ll alienate myself further,because if I were to cry I’d have to reveal too early that I have a dead daughter,spending the rest of our school days alone,being the odd one that nobody knows how to speak to.
Although I am still human.
The lump and the tears fade. I control the urge,I’ve gotten to be an expert at it,but if I were to cry it doesn’t mean I’m scary,just that my daughter died,it hurts like hell.

Overcoming this sudden thought,we have to pay a visit to the place I almost fear I guess, the place that really makes me anxious.
Rainbow number 2 had an appointment, we’ve had it for months,I made my husband take a half day,I’ve had to really work myself to be able to go.
It used to be my place of work,a great place to go, I had friendships there,I had laughs there.
But now I hate it,for so much for Melody and of course my youngest baby’s pregnancy (not for this blog).
The drive up to the place, turning the corner, the multistorey, the refusal of parking on the ground floor all comes flooding back.
Thankfully we were able to avoid the departments.
The smell of the corridor,triggered so much.

Sitting in the waiting room hoping it wouldn’t take long.
Then we heard it,we both squeezed each others hands,because simply we both knew it was going to take us off guard.
But the door buzzer,that we had heard hundreds of times in the nicu,sounded. Was only once,but enough for me to take me back 4 years.
34 days we sounded that buzzer, spoke through the intercom.
“Melody’s parents”.
Gelling our hands, turning the corner then washing and gelling them again,placing my expressed milk into the fridge. Every single day.
Then the 35th day,the buzzer sounded as pressed it,like every day. Only it felt different. Because unbeknown to us behind the wall that separated our buzzer from Melody. She was being kept alive.

Of course you know the rest.
Tiny things,that trigger so much,so painful.
I sometimes get embarrassed by these triggers,but then I ask..
Why should I feel embarrassed?
This is Melody’s story. The triggers aren’t as fun as those I have with my living children, but society allows me to speak of those.

I miss her. I’m certainly not afraid to say that. There’s nothing wrong with me.

(Being remembered by a friend in Cornwall). 

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