All That Will Never Be


To my beautiful boy,

Can you believe I’ve been writing to you for two years? The last week has been very hard and I have cried a lot. I long to have you back, to have time with you again. Your brother, bless his heart, can never make up for losing you. I want him and you, my two boys. I want my twin boys, what would life have been like with twin boys? The chaos and mess hey! You were identical twins and I’m sure you would have been very close brothers, keeping each other occupied. 

I miss that I’ll never get to make rice crispie cakes with you or paint a picture. We could do our handprints in paint. Mine would be the big hand and yours would be the tiny hand. After that we could clean up and go to the park, go on the swings and the slide. Collect some leaves and sticks. 

These are all things I would have loved to do with you but they are things that will never be. I miss you today as much as the day you left us. I wish I could be with you to play in the clouds.

Sending floaty kisses, love always,

Mummy, xxxx

Still Hurting


To my special boy,

Mummy misses you so very much. I am full of raw sadness and pain, it’s hard to put one foot in front of the other. I am 2 years into my journey without you but some days feel like I have only just lost you.

Your brother turned one last week and I don’t know if that has been the driver for another wave of grief. Your brother, bless his heart, can never make up for what we lost. He can never replace or eradicate the pain. All my grieving went on hold when I got pregnant with him 6 months after I lost you, maybe now all my grief is catching up with me. Seeing him have a birthday party was beautiful and a wonderful celebration but inside I thought of how you would never have a birthday party. Never open a present or blow out a candle. I didn’t just lose a baby, I lost a toddler, a school boy, a teenager, an adult.

I yearn for you everyday, sometimes I want to scream “I don’t want anyone or anything else, I want my baby!!” I want my Robyn, I want that pregnancy back, I want that time with you again. Saying I miss you doesn’t even sum up the love I have for you. I wish I could hold you again, hold your tiny hands, marvel at your tiny toes. So perfectly formed, so innocent. I wish I could kiss your head again and wrap you up one last time. I don’t understand why you had to be poorly, why you had to be taken from us. Now I am in the book of life after Robyn. I can never go back to the book of life before the loss of Robyn. I am so cold and lonely without you, I wish there was something that could fill this black hole that I’m left with.

The running is going well. I’ve kept to my training plan and the mileage is slowly creeping up now. I did 16 miles last week. My knee is playing up a little so I will have to keep an eye on that and hope it doesn’t become a big injury. I think of you on every run, whenever I feel tired or out of breath, I think of you and how you kept going for as long as you did. 

Keep warm and snuggled, miss you and love you always,

Mummy xxxx

London Marathon 2018


Whilst watching this years London marathon on tv, the thousands of runners and all the work leading up to that day, my partner turned to me and said “why don’t you go in for it next year?”. We quickly realised it would fall on Robyn’s birthday so it was a must.

Thanks to baby brain and tiredness I missed the ballot and so set about securing a charity place, which thankfully I did with the charity Tommy’s. I drew up a training plan breaking it down into goals. I will be running a 10k in September and a half marathon in late October. I might get another one in between December and March. Alongside the training plan, I drew up a fundraising plan as I have to raise £2000 for the charity which is a lot! As well as sponsorship I have some ideas to keep some money rolling in.

It is going to be a full on project with the running and the fundraising. I have thankfully some wonderful friends who have kindly offered their help and support which is amazing. 

So there you have it, I am running the London Marathon 2018 in memory of my little boy Robyn, for all he didn’t get to see and experience, for all the heartache and pain, let’s have a sense of gratitude and achievement. 

Xxx

Keep on Running


Dear Robyn,

It’s been a little while since I wrote to you on your birthday. I had a very sad few weeks but I think I am on track again now. I’m sure you know this is in your own way as I talk to you everyday. I hope my words reach you.

On the weekend of your birthday it was the London marathon, one of the biggest sporting dates on the calendar. As I watched the runners in all their varied charity vests, the training and hard work leading up to that moment for them, it got me thinking about you and my grief.

Mummy suggested I do the marathon next year and that the training would give me a focus in my grief, a purpose and a goal. What a brilliant idea I thought. Especially as the marathon will be on your birthday next year, it seems destined to be.

However, with baby brain and sleep deprivation I missed the ballot so I’m now having to apply for a charity place which, if I manage to get, I need to raise a large fixed amount for the charity (£2000!). But it’s a challenge I’m willing to take on and hopefully succeed with. To run the marathon on your birthday in your memory would be amazing and mean a great deal. 

I miss you every single day, you are always on my mind. Going running has so far given me space to think of you in a purposeful way and of course has been a good source of exercise and soothes my heart and mind.

Keep your tiny fingers and toes crossed that mummy gets a place with one of the charities, all of which are relevant to the cause of running in your memory. I’m working hard on it. I have even joined a running club! 

Whenever I feel tired or out of breath, I think of you and all that you will never get to see, hear, feel, experience. And I think “come on!” I got through the pain of losing you, I can get through a bit of breathlessness and tiredness. 

Sending you all my love, miss you heaps,

Love from mummy xxxx

Happy 2nd Birthday


Dear Robyn,

wishing you a happy birthday in the clouds. Every day that rolls forward, takes me further away from you but my love for you grows. I never knew I could love so strongly but my bond with you is unbreakable. I wish that I could cuddle you and wish you happy birthday. That I could see what milestones you had reached. I wish that I could watch you blow out the candles on your birthday cake and open your presents. I hope that there is cake and balloons in heaven. I feel so lonely without you. I want to be with you so that I can look after you, I feel like you are all on your own and that breaks my heart even more. Fly high little one and have a lovely day playing on your birthday.

Sending you all my love now and always,

Love you lots, mummy xxxx

Answers


I think too deeply. I write too much. I watch every movement for answers but all I uncover are more questions. Questions of why, and how, and what the fuck? They swim around in a spiral like a shoal of fish, circular, darting. Lively and collective.

I feel dizzy with them. I sit down. I write. But no answers.

I am sat in a coffee shop watching a little boy no more than 3 years old, note the colour of every passing car from the window. Each one more enthusiastically than the last. “Red. Blue. White. Racing car yellow”. He is shrouded in innocence, making sense of the world in his own way. I thought about Robyn. About him walking and climbing. About him making sense of the world and counting traffic. About his loss that I just cannot seem to swallow and move on from. I feel like I am fighting my way out of a plastic bag, suffocating, tiring.

Will I ever find the exit from the pain.

I thought about killing myself, to feel nothing but that is not the answer.

I thought about pushing it all away, ramming it into a cupboard and forcing the doors shut. The weight of my back against the wood.

But that is not the answer.

I thought about basking in the sunshine of Oskar’s achievements, that proud mummy, beaming smile way. I thought sunbathing in the positives would drive out the cold shadow of grief.

But I found I traced Robyn over the top, trying not to break the tracing paper with the pencil, I could not see what was underneath, what was happening in real time.

So that was not the answer.

What is the answer?

Time?

Talking?

Space?

Ignoring?

Moving?

Sitting?

Another baby?

Filling the void?

It has been over 23 months and I still do not have the answers.

Another Mothers Day


Dear Robyn,

What a bitter sweet day it has been today. When I went through IVF I used to dream of Mother’s Day. Of cards made from tiny hands, of feeling blessed and whole. Which maybe sounds a bit idealistic for a day that’s probably more driven by card companies than appreciation of mothers. After I lost you, the pain of Mother’s Day experienced during treatment was ramped up because it wasn’t just about dreams anymore, it was about what could have been.

Mother’s Day when you have come out of IVF and lucky enough to have a baby, is an unusual experience. On one hand I feel a betrayal to my IVF days, on the other I feel sadness that you are not here and then on another hand there is some happiness at my first Mother’s Day with your brother. I have not been sure where to put myself all day. 

I imagine by now you would probably be able to make a little scribble in a card with some assistance, that you would have been able to climb onto our bed and wake me up. I miss that I have not had those things. I miss that I have not heard your voice or your little words. I miss you so much today and everyday. So many mothers out there are heavy hearted today thinking of their little ones who were taken too soon. 

There are no cards from heaven, no flowers or phone calls. There are only painted faces and superficial smiles, that hide the grief behind the eyes of every woman missing their angel or longing for a baby. 

I tried to enjoy what I could today, to be thankful for what I have as I know that is what you would want for me to do. It just felt like there was something missing. But it feels that way each day.

Missing you so very much,

Lots of love, Mummy xxxx

The Rainbow’s End

Dear Robyn,

today produced a beautiful rainbow which always reminds me of you. I am feeling quite low at the moment but trying to keep busy. We have been talking about the embryo that is left from your cycle and think that probably we will allow it to be thawed. I don’t think either of us could go through treatment again.

That opens up a landscape of grief that I am not sure how to deal with. I want to move on from IVF and draw a line under it, to look forward and enjoy what I’ve got. But it just leaves me feeling sad. Sad because it was a chapter you were the main theme of, a chapter that I will have to close. But how? How do I close the book never to open it again? How do I write the next chapter? No doubt I will have to work through the pain which is something I would rather ignore and bury deep down where I can’t reach it anymore. It feels too raw and with no help to process it.

While we drove out into the countryside through the arch of the rainbow, I thought about you. I thought about how I long to meet you at the rainbows end. That you are the rainbow. You are the sunshine, the wind on a spring day, the rain and the bird’s song. You are in everything which is comforting but despairing simultaneously. How do I move through it Robyn? I feel so alone. A stillbirth feels a complex grief, a baby signifies a beginning but ours came to an end.

Fly high little one, fly to the rainbow’s end.

Love from Mummy xxxx

 

 

 

 

 

Cold Water

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Dear Robyn,

I am missing you terribly. The theory of grief being cyclical seems to be proving true. I feel like I’ve plunged back into the coldest of water, surrounded only by darkness and strong currents. The cold water rushing up my nose, my lungs full to bursting from being starved of exhaling.

I am in the loneliest phase, knowing and accepting that you are gone but not ready for the future and moving on. I lost an important piece of you this past week. Someone who was a part of your story and your history. I have to find a way of moving forward without this person although I have no idea how when I am unable to move on without you.

Sometimes I dread the days, dread going to bed, dread being in the house, dread playgroup, dread nappy changes and feeding times. All the things I longed to do with you and I dread them now with your brother. I should be enjoying every minute when we went through so much to have him. And I do enjoy some things but it isn’t the way I envisaged.

During times like this I wish there was a map or a set of instructions to guide me through. I don’t feel strong enough to do this. All coinciding with deciding what to do with the frozen embryo we have in storage. It’s never easy to navigate something like this but it feels even more difficult when it is a part of you. Then everything will have gone, all the pieces will of passed.

Where does that leave me then, in colder water?

6.06am

Dear Robyn,

it seems too early for tears but that’s what I’m doing right now at 6.06am, tears streaming down my face. Maybe today is not a good day. It’s my morning not to get up with your brother too but I’ve been awake a while, just thinking, not really about anything but about everything at the same time. I slept on the sofa last night, sometimes I can’t bear to go to bed, it signifies the end of another day, a formal moving forward and I don’t think I’m ready for that. 

I saw the psychologist from the team yesterday and he gave me a brilliant booklet about recovery after postpartum psychosis, it is just what I needed to give me a map for these early weeks out of hospital. But he also talked about you and about grief and whether some of what I was feeling was unresolved grief. With not having much time between losing you and getting pregnant again I guess I didn’t have much time to grieve, he said 2 years seems to be a period of time after which things gets easier. It will be two years next month but it doesn’t feel two years at all. 

We have been thinking of doing something to mark your passing again, just to remember you and talk about you, to remember all the things we would have done together. I guess I hadn’t thought that I could do these things whenever and that I didn’t have to wait for a special date. 

One other person who was a great part of your story is now no longer in my life in the way they once were which is kind of like grieving all over again, I’ve lost another of the few parts of you I had. I’m not sure they know or if they even care but to me it’s like losing you all over again. Still, that’s life I suppose, full of loss.

Love you lots,

Mummy xxxx