I wonder what ?

There are many things that I struggle with dealing with the loss of my children, in particular Millie. With the baby that we miscarried, I don’t seem to have the same struggles, I have different struggles, like never knowing what they would even look like when they were born or seeing what colour eyes they would have.

I think maybe this is because we didn’t know whether the baby was a boy or girl. We gave the baby a unisex name because of this and it still breaks my heart when I think of our loss with this baby. Don’t get me wrong, I know that all types of baby/pregnancy loss are horrendous because you start to plan your baby’s future as soon as you see that positive line but for me with Millie it’s different because she had been with us here for 9 months and one of the biggest struggles that I have is not seeing her grow up.

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Now I know that seems a really obvious thing to say but it’s the little things that many people take for granted when you have children.

Would she like having plaits in her hair?

What would her voice sound like?

How tall would she be?

Would she like wearing dresses or be a total Tomboy living in jeans and getting covered on dirt like I was?

Would she have her daddy’s smile or would she sleep the same way he does?

Would she like going to the football with him at the weekends?

This seems to hit me the most when it’s around her birthday and not long after her birthday this year, my mum passed me some photos.

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Many of them made me laugh, photos of her on her wedding day, of my Auntie (yes, you Auntie Linz 😀) as a very young girl but then I came across some of me when I was small. What was odd though, is that these random photos that my mum had brought over were of me when I was 6, the same age that Millie would have been this year.

My mum hadn’t even looked on the back of the photos and seen the age, she’d just picked a few up to show me …

Strange isn’t it that this is the one I saw?

Do your children look like you or have the same mannerisms? I would love to know what you have in common, it’s such a beautiful thing that our children look like us and often act like us.

If like us, you have angels, what is it that you imagine them to be like?

x

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Six, that many?

Looking back now, it’s hard to believe that we are just around the corner from our sixth Christmas without our little girl.

We were at Millie’s resting place yesterday and a lovely lady came to talk to me who recognised me from a newspaper. We got chatting and she told me that she was visiting her son who has in grieving terms, not long been buried, she was so sad. It hurt me to see her in so much pain and knowing that there’s nothing that you can do to take it away. Her son was a lot older than Millie, in his twenties but still no age to lose your life and a parent should never have to go through the indescribable pain of losing a child, no matter how old or young they are or in fact, you are.

Instead of preparing ourselves for Christmas by hunting out the latest gifts that our children want, an extremely large number of us are hunting out flowers or plants that might just last outside over Christmas a little longer than usual, we are placing little Christmas Trees and outdoor lights around our children’s resting places and we are laminating cards to last in the rain or laying them down knowing that within 24 hours they will be destroyed but hoping that our children will have read our words in them, in some strange and mysterious way that they are involved with our lives.

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For the first three years after we lost Millie, we didn’t celebrate Christmas. We didn’t put a tree up, we didn’t see any family or friends or exchange gifts or cards. We didn’t acknowledge it, it was just another day to Dan and I.

I don’t ever think Christmas will be a huge thing for us, it hurts too much. It’s hard to make plans with other people as I can’t predict how many times each of us will break down and cry and many people (thankfully) cannot understand why this happens. We’re more comfortable just having our own little Christmas in our own home.

The fourth year was different, we put a tree up and did a little bit of Christmas because we now had Leo. We couldn’t not do it for him. We’ve always said that we don’t want Leo’s (and now Asher’s) lives to be any different or miss out on on things because of what happened to Millie.

Christmas is something that Leo and Asher’s friends will celebrate and take part in and we don’t want our children to feel left out and not to be able to enjoy this time of year, especially as they get older.

I’m not religious, not at all. I did wonder,like many of us do and we had Millie christened but once she passed away, that was it for me. I couldn’t believe in something so cruel, something that could take away a child from loving parents, so as you can imagine Christmas will never be associated with religion in our house.

There will never be any Christmas scenes, any prayers and certainly no bibles. It will always just be a fun day for our children where they get some presents and are allowed to eat more chocolate than usual!

It’s extremely hard that first Christmas after you lose a child. Everything you see or hear, tears your heart out. Children getting excited looking at toys or coming out from visiting Santa, families enjoying big family Christmas meals and songs on the radio that can make you spontaneously burst out crying in the middle of a supermarket after playing just a few notes or words.

Waking up on Christmas morning, there are lots of tears before any of the fun. The tears fall as soon as we wake up for the missing part of our family, our precious daughter. We cannot help but think about how we won’t see her face running smiling into our bedroom, or the shock on her face when she sees that Father Christmas has been or how happy she realises she can be when she can have chocolate for breakfast. None of it. We never got to see it, we never will and we still miss it like it’s an existing memory. That’s the thing with us though, we don’t have any Christmas memories with Millie because we never got to see her first one. All we know, is everything that she will miss out on, everything she will never get to see or experience and although these thoughts are with us every day in everything that we do, they became ever so more prominent at special times of the year.

We’ll visit Millie a couple of times on Christmas Day, normally in the morning and then in the evening to light some candles. She’ll be left a card and lots of gorgeous flowers from us and at home, she’ll have a Christmas Stocking, just like we all will. Although it won’t be filled with special treats like all the other ones, it’s still hers and it will still be there.

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We’ve also got our other little star, the baby I miscarried in November 2016. I love my family so much, but it’s hard not to see what should have been, that we should have 4 children all laughing around the table with us, that there should be twice as many presents in our living room from Father Christmas and that there should be twice as much mess as there will be. I’d love to see twice as much mess and twice as much chaos in our home at any time because that would mean that we wouldn’t have any sad memories from the past and that all our children would be here with us.

If you are lucky enough to be able to celebrate Christmas with all your children around you, send a little love to the people that can’t. Christmas is an emotional time for anyone who has lost a loved one but a Christmas without a child that should be there is unbearable as you think about all the missing futures that they should have and even just the missing smile from around the table.

As much as we will laugh, smile and play with our little ones on the day, a piece of us will be with our missing children and there’ll always be a part of us that can’t quite get to that happy place that we all crave to get to, that perfect life that we all want.

I sign Christmas cards (any cards) off with Millie’s name in them, she’s a huge part of our family and always will be. Some people might find that odd and think that we shouldn’t do it, but I don’t care. Unless you have lost a child, I don’t care for your opinion when it comes to how we should we grieve or how we should act. Losing a child, is not the same as any other type of loss or any other type of grief, far from it.

Six Christmases down the line since we lost Millie and we are still trying to figure out what and how we want to do things without Millie here.

My heart is with all those parents right now who are experiencing their first Christmas without their child. The pain of all those firsts is a pain that will never leave me and will always hurt. I wish that I could tell these parents that the pain will go away but it doesn’t,not at all.

You learn to live with the pain and your life is built around it. You learn how to deal with your pain to get you through these special days and you will discover what is the right thing for you to do on these days and whatever you decide that is, is perfect – for you and always will be.

If I could line you all up and give each and every one of you a hug this Christmas, I would … I feel your pain, I feel your miss.

From one grieving parent to another xxx

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Without a Child – Mother’s Day 

In a perfect world this 2017 Mother’s Day, I would have my 5 year old daughter Millie running into our bedroom with a plate of toast that daddy made & a handmade card that she’d made at school with some flowers that she’d picked with her daddy; my crazy little whirlwind 2 year old son bringing me in whatever he came across as he ran from his bedroom to give me a kiss and I’d also be extremely tired after having a restless night because I’d be 6 months pregnant.

That’s how it should be, in a perfect world. But it’s not. And actually, not many people live in a perfect reality but many of us struggle to see that. 

In my reality. My lovely little whirlwind son will come bounding into our bedroom with a million books just as he does every morning and he’ll give me a big sloppy morning kiss and jump into bed with us. 

Later that morning, we’ll pay a visit to our daughter’s sleeping place and instead of her giving me flowers, I will give them to her and lay them on her resting place to keep it looking beautiful; this I find extremely hard on Mother’s Day but I still do it. 

The cemetery is always busy on Mother’s Day but with people laying flowers on their mother’s resting places – the way it should be. The reason we are visiting the cemetery places us in a minority group on this day, a group that we would give anything not to be in.

I won’t be tired because of a restless night being 6 months pregnant either because I sadly miscarried just before 12 weeks in November 2016. To read more about this click here 

We won’t go out for a meal or go somewhere fun like many families because four years after losing Millie and even after having Leo, I still struggle seeing families so happy on these certain days and I spend all day crying. Daft, I know – especially because many of these families probably have their own sad stories. I find it hard still being around families on these days that have these lovely big families – because we should be a noisy family of 4 (nearly 5) and we aren’t – our card has been dealt much differently through no fault of our own.  I’m not jealous, or angry – it just hurts, so much. 


I know that things will be different in a few years, especially when Leo is at school and he’ll make me things for these special days & he’ll come running out of school with for them, so proud of what he has made. He’ll suddenly one year be old enough to bring me breakfast in bed without daddy’s help & even pick his own card for me and choose where we should spend Mother’s Day together – I can’t wait for this; because it will make Leo happy and in turn it will make me smile and enjoy the day more. I genuinely am looking forward to this. 

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This year is my 5th Mother’s Day without Millie and my 3rd one with Leo. If you do the sums you will realise that I had 2 Mother’s Days being a mum but without a child in my arms. They were the hardest; being a mum but not feeling like one. 


This day is tough for so many who are thinking about their own lives right now and how different they would be if their children had survived, their pregnancy had continued or their infertility hadn’t stopped their dreams. 

Women who have lost children.

Women who can’t have children for medical reasons.

Women who have suffered pregnancy loss.

Women who want nothing more than to be a mum but it’s just not happening for them. 

A mother should never have to experience a Mother’s Day without their child, they should not have to wake up on this day feeling even less of a mother than they already do. I can say that from my heart because that’s honestly how I felt the first Mother’s Day after losing Millie and part of me still feels like that today even after having my gorgeous boy. A part of my being a mum will always be missing, no matter how hard I try. 

Mother’s Day is so commercialised that it is everywhere and you cannot avoid it even if you want to and for many that is tough. 

Think about those close to you this weekend that might be struggling a little not having a child with them for whatever reason that may be and drop them a quick text letting them know that you are thinking of them. 

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Four years and counting 

As our darling daughter’s 4th anniversary draws to a close, it still feels like only yesterday when we last held her in our arms for the very last time.

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You cannot imagine the immeasurable pain that you feel when you lose a child, unless you have sadly been through this yourself and for those that haven’t, we would never even want you to try and imagine.

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The hardest part of Millie’s anniversary?
Time.

Every time we look at the clock we are right back in that day and we know exactly what we were doing and who we were with. As I write this now, I know that we were about to leave the hospital after being there for over 7 hours, knowing that instead of coming home with us, our daughter was about to be taken to the mortuary, which is where the next place we saw her would be. 

TEXT MILL04 £4 to 70070 to help us reach our £4,000 target in Millie’s memory today. 

At 12.30pm today, I was thinking about how I was being taken to hospital thinking that I was going to see my daughter sat up smiling at me when I walked in, how wrong was I? 

At the same time today, we were arriving at our daughter’s sleeping place with lots of lovely balloons that our lovely friend Jay had once again put together for us, some to stay at Millie’s sleeping place, the others to send to the clouds at the time that she officially passed away, so that Millie could play with them – Leo enjoyed releasing the balloons today and watching them float away.

Time. It doesn’t heal. It’s a lie. People say this to you because they aren’t sure what else to say. It doesn’t get easier and it doesn’t heal – nothing can heal this type of pain, nothing can ever heal the loss of a child. You learn to live with it. You learn to live with your new way of life. 

Our heart goes out to every parent who has ever lost a child, at whatever age.

TEXT MILL04 £4 to 70070 to help us reach our £4,000 target in Millie’s memory today. 

It’s very important to us that Leo, Millie’s little brother, grows up knowing everything about her and also that we still always smile so he does too. 


This was him today playing at the park just twenty minutes before we left to visit Millie and get through the saddest time of the day for us. He smiles, we smile; we smile, he smiles. It’s the way that it should be – even on our saddest days. 

To all the parents sadly starting out on this journey, or travelling through this journey a little way behind us; it’s ok to cry, it’s ok to smile, it’s ok to scream. 

In fact. It’s okay to do exactly what you want or need to, to help you along this tragic journey.

Kiss your child good morning, kiss your child goodnight,

We could never have truly guessed what was to come with such a fright.

I never would have thought my heart could break with such a pain,

I never could see through the storms and clouds and the never ending rain.

Four years since you were taken, cruelly snatched in just a minute,

We hugged and kissed and smiled and laughed, we never could have foreseen it.

You were stolen with no warning and taken from us so fast,

I never thought I would survive, I truly thought I wouldn’t last. 

Although we grieve through everyday and miss you with our heart,

We always know, that one day we’ll no longer be apart.

Love mummy, daddy and Leo on your 4th anniversary xxxxx

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Been to Cornwall

Sitting at Millie’s resting place is so peaceful and calm. Many of you won’t be able to relate to that and honestly, that’s a good thing – I’m glad that you can’t. 


I’m sat here right now after not being here for a week because we went away and got back last night. 

Well, actually – we ran away. 

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We didn’t want to be here over the few days that Millie should’ve been starting school.

I didn’t want to see all the gorgeous little kiddies, girls in particular being walking to their brand new schools – I know it would’ve hurt too much; some of you will think we took the cowards way out by running away but it was what was best for us and until you’ve walked in our shoes (which I actually don’t want you to ever have to do that), you’ve absolutely no right to judge.

Before we left last Saturday, we came and lay a gorgeous bouquet of flowers down for Millie – a bouquet bought by money that should have gone on Millie’s first school uniform or school shoes, not flowers for her sleeping place. 

I’m not going to lie. I’ve struggled for this past few weeks, both of us have. The earliest part of last week was very hard in particular for us and we argued. Stupid, silly little arguments because we were both upset over Millie not being here starting school. It can’t be helped, we know that we are are always going to argue around special times that we should be going through with Millie – part of our grieving process I think and I know that’s never going to change. 

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I even abandoned Facebook – my personal page. I knew that I couldn’t cope with all the obligatory first day of school door photographs which I know is a rite of passage – so I decided to come off it for it a while, so I didn’t have to see them. I’ll go back and have a look on a good day. 

I was going to post a photo on here of our door that Millie should’ve been standing in front of – but there would be no point in me doing that because Millie wouldn’t have ever been stood in front of a door in the house that we live in now because we wouldn’t be living here. As many of you already know, we moved not long after Millie passed away because our garden backed onto the fields of that place where she passed away and we couldn’t stay living there watching other children play – it would’ve genuinely ended probably both of our lives. 


And the doors that we have now – even Leo won’t have his photo taken in front of them because we’ve recently put our house up for sale; because that is all it is. 

A house.

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It’s never really felt like a home to us because we moved here as a means to an end and have never had any intention of staying or making it a home. It was what we needed at the time.  I don’t even remember viewing the house we live in now or actually moving in and that makes me sad. That’s part of the reason that we now want to find a “home”.

I actually genuinely cannot wait to choose our next home once ours sells because I can’t wait to pick out wallpaper that I want to come home too and have furniture in my garden that I want to sit in and watch Leo play in. It will be lovely to feel like we have a “home” again.

In a few years time though, we will be taking those first day photographs of Leo and I know that someone may look at them and feel sad like I do right now and even now I want to give that person a big hug. 

For now though, we had a break, made some amazing new memories with our gorgeous Leo but it’s good to be back. xxx


Trying to get that family pic …. Always the same 😂

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Leo’s first …. 

…Haircut ✂️✂️✂️

We never got to do this with Mills … First haircut I mean. That’s what we did with Leo this morning… Think he’s looking rather pleased with himself and his new haircut. No longer looking wild and untamed 😂


And I apologise now to all the parents who are going to hate me for this …. It didn’t actually bother him in the slightest, in fact I think he loved it in the chair.

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He’s got a little shiny red nose at the moment, it’s teething time – 3 have come through this week which means he’s only got about 3 to go now, he has done so well with them so far but I think these ones have hurt him the most 

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We were a bit early for our appointment this morning at the hairdressers so we let him have a run around on the park, his walking has come on immensely in the past few weeks – I love watching him toddle … Click here to see

And here is a reminder of some of his first steps

So back to the haircut. Yep, this was Leo’s first haircut. We were given his cut offs in a little plastic bag to keep, which is lovely but was also sad. It was sad because we’ve also got Millie’s first cut off hair at home but it wasn’t done under the same circumstances. Millie’s was given to us after she had passed away and they had cut some from her in the mortuary, which I am so glad that they did. It was still a very real reminder this morning of something that we missed out on with Millie…but our smiles were still there for Leo and his first haircut even though our hearts were hurting for Millie. 

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Bye for now xxx

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Six years …

Six years ago today Dan and I got engaged, just 5 months after we went on our first date. When you know it’s right, you know it’s right 😍. Just 4 months later (less than 9 months after our first date) we got married in the most gorgeous place in Seattle – we cannot wait to go back there one day.


This is just a little message to say, go with your own feelings. Many people had their own opinions about whether we were rushing things and even whether we would last… 6 years down the line and we are still standing and we’ve proven all those people wrong. 

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Unfortunately many people split up after losing a child, their marriage cannot cope with it and we totally understand how it can get to that stage – I’m not going to lie, we got very close to it a few times after some huge rows but it all came down to the same thing – losing Millie and what it had done to us individually but we have stuck together and little Leo has been our rainbow to solidify everything again.

Do something for me. Always make sure that you are always happy, make your own decisions and don’t let other people’s opinions influence you – if we had, we might never have got married! 

Our 6 year anniversary is in September, so in just a few months and it’s another huge milestone for us … Every birthday, Christmas and anniversary is a massive achievement now for us. 

Look forward, not back and always be happy xxx