I can wish for the days when being part of the Wave of Light hurt so badly I wanted to collapse inward under the weight of my own dying star.
I ache for the pain.
I remember that this day pulled me low and broke me all over again.
It no longer does.
I regret that.
Life goes on.
Except for those for whom it does not.
Except for the piece of me that got lost way back there with him.
With Freddie, more than 4 and a half years ago.
Long enough that only a very few people mentioned his name.
He’s drifted, found a mist, scattered and fled from the minds of most.
Even sometimes of mine.
But not from my heart. Never from there.
There is a bitterness creeping in me that he is forgotten now; perhaps it is because I know people mirror my own onwards face.
It’s so hard to live if you look backwards, so hard to live if you let yourself acknowledge that you want to turn round. It is all smoke and mirrors, all a game I play. Forwards. Keep walking forwards.
And so I rage quietly – and with guilt of knowing I have only myself to blame. I held him to my heart and kept him to myself – and so he sat by the roadside quietly while other memories marched on. Left in the grass, in the sun I hope. Just a whisper of a baby no one knew.
This year, again, I remember. I always will.
I remember Freddie.
I remember a twin.
I remember Evie Rose.
I remember Benjamin.
I remember Joel.
I remember Toby and Estella.
I remember Sophia and Thomas.
I remember Matthew.
I remember Lily.
I remember the lost potential children of friends & family who I love.
I remember Florence Violet.
I remember Emma Faith.
I remember Daniel.
I remember Minnie.
I remember Thomas.
I remember Jack.
And I remember all the babies of people who have kept me sane this last 4 years, 6 months and 2 days on my blog, on their blogs, and at Glow. A list I will inevitably keep adding to for days as I get to yet another blog I read and realise the enormity of loss that silently surrounds us. (Forgive me if I have not yet added your child, please remind me, my memory & rss feed are equally inadequate prompts.)
I remember Iris.
I remember Lucia.
I remember Georgina.
I remember Charlotte.
I remember Alex.
I remember Reid.
I remember Hope.
I remember Haloumi.
I remember Gabriel.
I remember Micah.
I remember Cullen.
I remember Otis.
I remember Foster.
I remember Liam.
I remember Laura.
I remember Joseph.
I remember Snowflake.
I remember Margot.
I remember Catriona.
I remember Isabelle.
I remember Rhianna Lily.
I remember Daisy.
I remember Poppy.
I remember Matilda Mae.
I remember Hugo.
I remember all the babies of the men and women on Glow who have stood beside me this year.
I am thinking of the babies who belong to women who have told me their stories this year in person, to comfort me and abide with me, but who have not always told me their names.
I am thinking of babies held in hearts and kept private to their families.
I am thinking of the mothers for whom hope was gone almost before it had taken root.
I am thinking of the babies who were longed for and never came.
I am thinking of the mothers for whom pregnancy became surgery & medical procedures.
I am thinking of the women who made the decision to say goodbye for a greater good, while it tore their hearts out and broke their souls.
I am thinking of the mothers who discovered horror on a day that should have meant a whether pink or blue nursery needed preparing.
I am thinking of the mothers who felt stillness where a moment before there had been back flips.
I am thinking of the mothers who prepared or laboured to deliver a baby knowing they would never hear a cry.
I am thinking of the mothers who unexpectedly heard the loudest silence in the world.
I am thinking of the parents who hovered over a neonatal crib, hoping for a miracle, learning medical terms they never wanted to know.
I am thinking of the parents who chose the moment of their child’s last breath and held them as they died.
I am thinking of the parents who didn’t get there in time to do that.
And of all those who fall into the myriad of cracks between, each a chasm as deep and dark as any other.
And for the fathers, the siblings, the aunts and uncles and grandparents for whom life is never quite the same again.
Every year another name. So many, many, many more names.
International Baby Loss Day. October 15th.