OK, lets get some perspective. Its 23:34 and I should be fast asleep. I’m not a night owl, insomniac or worried / stressed. I couldn’t settle without getting these words out and so if its slightly off the wall forgive me.
On September 29th 2015 my daughter should be 6 years old. For most Mums this means making 35 party bags, (probably Frozen themed) collecting or making the cake, booking the perfect venue and organising a day that only a parent could put the effort into for 100 dry curled sandwiches that nobody actually ever eats.
Except I wont have to do this and I haven’t ever. Several days after our little bubble was born. It popped. She passed away in my arms.
You see Gracie Alice Rose was too precious for this earth. She could only spend a few days and hours with us, and that was all we had.
I don’t need you to feel sorry for me, she was one of the BEST experiences I have ever had. I mean that to. The why’s and the hows are irrelevant at this moment in time, that was all put to rest.
What I want to share is something that Gracie gave me that was way more incredible. As my first born, she made me a Mummy. The power of that word will always haunt me – in a good way. We may of left the hospital with an empty baby car seat but she made me feel complete and she still continues to do so today.
I take her everywhere with me and in my heart she stays, protected from the negativity of this world, she made me wake up to life.
She made me see how bloody amazing my Mr Fridge was, that he was a keeper, my soul mate and mine. He protected me and shielded me where he could, he opened sympathy cards when my heart ached too much, even though his heart was broken too. He ran errands, and in hospital he did everything I needed him to do, including sleeping on the floor so that I wasn’t alone in my little clinical room. He did that for me, he did that for our baby…our family.
Our friends and family stepped up the love, support and united in ways that my written word can never do justice. It showed cracks in those who weren’t true and it made me realise how blessed we were. My amazing Mum was honest and truthful, she always has the answers – for this there were none. I overflowed with questions, why me? why our baby? why Gracie? As we sat on the edge of my bed she looked into my eyes and said she didn’t know. I respected that and I still do now.
Gracie inspired many to raise funds, run marathons (nutters) and do good for Great Ormond street. That’s not bad for a 2 day old baby right?
She inspired me to make the most of what life has to offer and through my experience of losing her I learnt how grief can catch you in moments you would never expect, the classic moment that I will always remember was several months after she had left us and I was buttering toast, I exploded in tears and still don’t fully understand why. I often tap into this when I work with pupils who are in similar situations. You cant teach life and you cant learn it from a book in the same way as the ‘University of life’.
We don’t celebrate any of her anniversaries. We do have traditions that we follow, like at Christmas we have a star that we place on her stone. I chose not to ‘regularly’ go to her grave and never have. Instead, she is in our village cemetery and we can walk past and pop in on a dog walk, or take J there via the park. She’s part of our life in this bumbling quaint village that we live in and I like that.
…the biggest thing I’ve learnt is that when it comes to death – there is no right answer. There is usually a ‘right for you’ but it doesn’t always show up immediately and that’s OK too. The other thing Gracie taught me was that nobody can take away your memories. In several short hours we made a thousand. That’s where she remains, in my heart x
Sweet dreams Gracie and thank you for giving so much in so little time.