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All the way to the other side of the world and back 

Kiwi’s don’t exist … That is the theory I came back with after leaving New Zealand (and of course, yes I know they actually do exist … But whenever I tried to see one it was always dark and I never actually got to see one apart from the one in the photo below) 😀 

  

So how did we end up travelling close to 12,000 miles to the other side of the world and why did we go? It wasn’t a holiday … Far from it … To me it was self-help break, a trip to find out who we had turned in to and to find out how strong we were without realising. It was a trip to find out what our future may or may not hold for us and a chance for Dan and I to see whether our marriage was capable of lasting through our grief. It was the trip of a lifetime … Or was it? Not really, we would rather have not been going under the circumstances that we were… A trip of a lifetime is something that you planned for, well; forever. A trip that you’ve made a list for of all the things that you can’t wait to see and discover that you never thought you would get to see.. Our trip wasn’t like that, it wasn’t a lifetime of planning that got us there, what got us there was losing our precious baby girl and the generosity of each and every one of you guys that donated your pennies towards getting us out there to New Zealand to meet a very special family, a very special family that have a very special little boy called Kory. Click here for media article 
This is Kory in the photo below.

 A few years ago, a follower of Millie’s Trust on Facebook put me in touch with a very lovely lady called Alison in New Zealand who unfortunately had lost her son a few years previously when eating a piece of apple in a nursery. We got chatting and Alison began to help me out with my emotions and feelings of guilt and then I talked about our communication online and thousands of you decided to get together and raise enough money to send Dan and I to meet Alison and her beautiful family on the other side of the world, which was absolutely amazing of you and we are forever thankful. It was unbelievable that just 5 months after we first spoke, Dan and I were on one of many aeroplanes on our journey to New Zealand to not only meet but to stay with these wonderful, well, the description for them then I suppose, were strangers – but they soon became something very different, they became our friends.

I struggled in particular after losing Mills and I needed someone to talk to, someone who had been through this – someone who could tell me what to expect. Alison became that person and her help whilst I was out there in New Zealand is one of the reasons why Leo is here today, Alison and Carl went on to have another gorgeous little boy, Charlie after they lost Kory and seeing them with him, made me be able to see our possible future for the first time in a long time.

 
The First time we all met in Auckland.

There is so much more to tell you about our visit to New Zealand and one day, I’ll tell it you all…I promise. Anyway, where am I going with this blog? 

Well, it’s been two years! How fast that has gone. It’s been 2 whole years since we rocked up in an orange camper van at Alison’s house and spent 10 days with this wonderful family who literally helped us to change our future.

 

One day (hopefully soon and not in 10 years time) we are hoping to get back out there and introduce Leo to these amazing people, to introduce him to another little rainbow baby called Charlie that came out of a terrible storm. We want to make more memories there with Leo and take hundreds more photos there that we are smiling on; except this time the smiles will be genuine and not show as much torment and anguish as the set we currently have. On many of the photos from this trip, we can see the hurt, pain, tiredness and stress in or eyes and I wish so much that I couldn’t see that, but one day, we’ll have some new ones and the smiles will be happy smiles. 

 
We might have had to travel over 11,000 miles to see our future but I am so glad that we did. Not only did it encourage us to have Leo but we met this amazing family who we will always be close to and I’m pretty sure Millie and Kory are playing hide and seek together in the clouds and watching down on us together, some times people are brought together for a reason, our two families clearly have … It’s a real shame that we are 11,000 miles apart but for now we have technology to keep us talking. 

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Kory’s parents set up Kory’s Trust in New Zealand – to see what they do, click here

Carrots! 

   “Mummy says that I am allowed to make as much mess as I like … So I did with my carrots, I’m happy because I ate them all up” Leo xxx
 We’re still on very early stage food even though Leo is nearly 11 months old … It was starting to bother me that I felt like I was hindering his development but you know what, we are getting there at our own speed and I know we’ll be OK, so we are alright with that.
Food feeds are limited to at home only (at the moment 😕) tv off, dog locked in the hall, phone put away – how it should be, concentration on Leo – it’s the only way I can do it. 

I’m certainly not comfortable enough to be feeding him out of our house yet – too many distractions around for us outside whilst we are in this journey.

It’s Spaghettis Bolognese for tea … Wonder what he’ll make off that ? 

Happy Sunday xxx

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Start of a New Year 

January is here again , Millie’s birthday month ( next Tuesday,12th) – it’s always hard this month in the run up to her birthday, l know how jittery I am already about it; especially now we’ve just had Christmas and that was so emotional for us after not doing it since we lost Millie.

I’m looking forward to Leo’s 1st birthday in Feb because I feel like we’ll get a bit of an “emotional break”  for a good 6 months; normally a bit longer than that but this year we have the add on of Leo’s birthday on this end of the year and the period when Millie should be starting school – that’s how it is now for us, everything is guided around dates; believe me it’s not good for you mentally but I think to an extent most people are programmed like that to remember dates and times that are important to you whether you like it or not. Obviously Leo’s 1st birthday and when Millie should be starting school are 2 very big events for us and it’s gonna be sad. Of course, it’s not a complete “emotional break” – it’s just a period of feeling like a little bit of the weight has been lifted as we arent counting down to anything until the Autumn period again.

We’re unsure of what to do for Leo’s birthday yet (please feel free to throw some ideas our way), we want it to be special of course because we never got there with Millie, it’s another huge milestone for our little family again, one that I am sure will be recorded with many photographs.

Looking forward to having the weight lifted a little from us though over the summer months.

So, now we’ve all got Christmas and New Year over, let’s talk about Easter 😀😀😀 nah, I’m only kidding, I’ve just been highly amused yesterday evening when I paid a visit to our local supermarket and saw rows of Easter Eggs …. Seriously?? Lol

Easter next to discounted Christmas crackers, always makes me laugh.

So, most of you know that Leo doesn’t and won’t be going to nursery after what happened to Millie because it will just never be right for us. We are determined that Leo will go to some kind of pre-school further down the line as we don’t want to go from having him with us 24/7 to full time school – we know it won’t be good for us mentally. We are also more inclined to think that we will be able to do something like this because we have had help dealing with things like this from our friends Alison and Carl in New Zealand ( hi you two) … because unfortunately they have been through the same horrendous situation that we have too, they lost their gorgeous son Kory when he choked at nursery too; but their youngest son Charlie has now started to be away from his parents in a situation like this and I think, if they can do it, so we can we… we look up to them so much and gain so much from their experiences. It’s absolutely awful the way in which our families met, but they have been amazing for us.

So, I decided that I wanted to attend some kind of group where Leo could interact with other babies to improve his social skills, he’s fabulous around older children/ people but rarely gets the chance to interact with kiddies of his own age… And also because I need to get over my fears of Leo picking things up, putting them into his mouth and generally being more of an explorer … So I booked into a class, called Messy Monkeys … And this happened 😀


Then this …


And then this … 😀


It was absolutely fabulous.

I flinched everytime he picked up some dry rice.

I froze every time he put a paintbrush in his his mouth with paint on.

I felt faint when he picked up a cork and started to chew.

Sometimes, to strangers I must come across as rude, ignorant or disinterested when they are talking to me and I am watching Leo and they don’t know what happened us, I know full well that I zone completely out and tunnel vision Leo … but i promise, I am lovely really.

And the class, Leo loved it.

Leo loved it. Millie would have loved it too.

And that is what it is all about … Leo experiencing things that Millie would have done too.

I can’t stop him exploring and being adventurous and I wouldn’t want to.

So, anyway back to this class.

Leo was covered in paint and so was I. He had rice stuck to his legs and sticky glitter in his hair and he absolutely loved it and we can’t wait to go back next week. One of the best things about today’s class though, NO CLEANING UP! Leo had all this amazing fun and the lovely Messy Monkey girls did all the cleaning up afterwards! How fabulous is that! Leo also made and brought home his first piece of artwork – a 2016 calendar with his hand and footprint on (I know that it’s his hand and footprint anyway !) 😀

Leo and all the other babies even got to have their own little baths at the end in little red tubs with bubbles! What a wonderful end to the session.

I’d recommend this class to anyone if they are in your area! It’s great fun X

I wonder what other adventures we can get up to together?

——-

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Are you in Burnley/Padiham area? Or an Internet Shop

Millie & Leo’s grandma is hosting a raffle around Millie’s Birthday (next week) in the school she works in. If you are a business and can donate a product or voucher to this event please do get in touch by emailing info@milliestrust.com or PM us on Facebook or Twitter. Beauty Vouchers, restaurant vouchers, actual products from businesses would be very welcome. Thanks Peeps

 

A reindeer called Ralph???

Rudolph the red nosed reindeer, has a very shiny nose …

They are all over the place now … Christmas songs I’m talking about. Most shops that I’ve walked in to this week have been playing them ... Santa Claus is coming to town … Walking along … Walking into a winter wonderland … All I want for Christmas is you…. 

Last year, I could not stand them, this year I’m finding myself humming to them and I even caught Dan singing to one of them this week in a shop that we were in; how things haved changed. 

As a lot of you will know, we’ve been unable to celebrate Christmas for three years because we lost Millie, it has just never felt right because she never even got her first Christmas and it’s just been another day for us ever since …. But this year, yesterday … There was this 

 
Yes, that is Leo, Dan and myself with The Santa Claus himself .. Yes the real one guys 😀

6 months ago, I would’ve have said that this probably wasn’t going to happen …But yesterday it did, thanks to a lovely lady named Kerry and we owe her a huge thank you. 

Kerry has been a follower of ours since we began and she wrote (yes, wrote to me, I loved getting a letter in the post – actual letters don’t happen that often!) to me a few weeks ago and asked to help us make Christmas special for us and for Leo as she knew we were struggling … And it just happened that she works within a Reindeer sanctuary, so she invited us over on their press day for their launch for this season. 

So yesterday we woke up at 6.30am and I actually felt excited about our visit, I’ve not had that feeling for a long time, it felt special .

We then packed up the car and headed off to spend the day at this amazing place called Blithbury Reindeer Lodge and our little man got to see the big man arriving himself into the reindeer sanctuary with 7 reindeer (this was the only day Santa arrives like this as he’s boarding at the Blithbury Reindeer Lodge until Christmas Eve.) 

As Santa arrived, Leo and his cousins got very excited and Leo couldn’t stop smiling – this was so lovely to watch but also so hard because I see Leo experiencing new things and I absolutely love it but my heart also breaks when he experiences something that Millie never did. 

As soon as we arrived we got to meet some lovely reindeer including the actual Red Deer, from the film Braveheart, Albert, who resides there. 

We walked through the doors of this magical place and were met with not only some of Santa’s Elves but also some gorgeous baby Reindeer from Scandavia and some beautiful home grown ones too! 

Leo got a very special present from the sanctuary but we’ll tell you about that in a few weeks closer to Christmas. 

We were very lucky yesterday with the rain holding off until the end of our visit, this made sure our visit was even more enjoyable! Picking up some feed on the way round we got to some of the older reindeer, in particular we loved the white ones, we thought they were stunning.   

Then it was time for Elf School – learning about how Elves work in Santa’s workshop and what reindeer like to eat. 

Then Leo went to meet Santa for the first time. This is how he reacted …

 
Seriously though, he loved it and we have to say that Santa was absolutely fantastic with Leo and with us. Santa knew all about what we are going through and he made everything very extra special and told Leo what a good boy he’d been this year!

Then he sent us into his special elf workshop, where we have to say the presents were amazing and the elves had worked really hard to produce some fabulous presents this year (in fact the best we have ever seen in an elf workshop).
 
Then he met Ralph, this is Ralph 😀

What was so lovely to see is how well the animals are looked after at Blithbury and I didn’t know until yesterday that they are such chilled out animals and so beautiful and soft. 

Our special visit soon came to an end when Leo needed milk and a long sleep with his reindeer friend that he had picked up on the way round!  

So what a milestone for us. We never want Leo to miss out on anything growing up because of the sadness that Dan and I experience because we lost his big sister. 

We want him to experience everything the world has to offer (within financial reach, of course, lol) but seriously though, Christmas is a huge thing for families and we want Leo’s first Christmas to be so special, just like Millie’s would have been-no matter how hard it is for Dan and I.

We aren’t sure at all what we are going to actually do on Christmas Day. We know we want to stay at home and just be our little family and I suppose everything else will just fall into place around us. We just want Leo to enjoy it and obviously to build all those memories for us of all of Leo’s special days. 

So thank you so much to Kerry and Blithbury Lodge (click here to visit their website and book to visit) for our special visit and making us so welcome. 

And Christmas .. We think we can just about survive you.m

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That time of year again …

“Wow, your dad sat up in bed and held Millie today, the first time in weeks that I have seen him do that….” 

Memories, they can make you smile or cry, laugh or hurt. The run up to Millie’s anniversary this week has been been like a film playing in my head that I have seen before. Remembering certain things we did together over those few days, people we saw, clothes we wore – the playback list is endless.

Sitting with her grandpa is something that is engrained in my memory because Frank (Millie’s grandpa) was dying of cancer the day we lost Millie. Telling Dan what had happened when I had visited Frank in the hospice that day, the day before Millie passed made us both smile because for weeks, Frank hadn’t had the strength to hold her properly because he was growing weaker by the day and we knew he didn’t have long left to live … We never expected him to outlive his newest granddaughter.

We lost Frank exactly one month after we lost Millie.

  

(Millie and her grandpa Frank, June 2012)

The minutes have gone by so slowly this week and every time I’ve looked at the time over the past few days, I could tell you exactly what I was doing at that time … 

Lunchtime 22nd October , sitting with Frank in the hospice and seeing him hold Millie and smiling at her … 11.40 ish am on 23rd October playing back the conversation in my head that Dan and I were having on the phone, him telling me that an ambulance had been called for Millie … 12pm being stood in Piccadilly train station struggling to get hold of that place were Millie was to find out if I needed to go there or to hospital … 12.30 taxi journey to hospital … Just before 1pm flying into the hospital and telling them I was Millie’s mum … Just after 1pm being shown Millie after not even being told she had passed away … 2.30pm in a family room with people giving me medication to calm me down and cups of tea to stop me from passing out, just after 4pm .. Dan finally walking through that door and having to accept reality … I could go on and on and on but the more detail I tell you, the more you will be sat there crying. One day I will write more and tell you more about what happened that day but right now, well it’s just not the right time for me 

In some ways, the days before her anniversary are worse because I start to think about all the things we would have done differently if we knew this had been coming.

1. We would never have taken her to that place in the morning.

2. We would have hugged and kissed Millie all night and not let her go.

3. I would have chosen to stay at home and not return to work yet after maternity leave. 

I can carrying on writing this list and for a long time in my head I did. I wrote it and re-wrote it and punished myself with it but the truth is and this is the harsh reality 

… That we cannot change any of it. 

We cannot go back and not to go work that day, we cannot go back and leave her with family instead of that place , we cannot go back and give Millie more hugs… What happened … happened …and as much as we want to change every little thing about that day, about that week;  we can’t, it’s just not possible. 

An anniversary is not a celebration and neither is Millie’s birthday. It is a day of remembrance for us, a day of sadness, a day of thinking about what we lost when we lost Millie. We were broken, broken in a way that we never thought we would recover from. 

This is the third anniversary we have been through now but the hardest pain hasn’t stopped yet this year because all those feelings will be back again on the 3rd November, the day that no parent ever wants to go through, the day we buried our baby girl. 

Every year on Millie’s anniversary we ensure that we are down at Millie’s resting place at the time that we official lost her – 12.52pm. It’s an act of respect for her from us, we weren’t there at the time we lost her but will be with her at her resting place every year until we join her. 

This year we obviously had an extra welcome addition with us – Leo. Leo comes down to Millie’s resting place whenever we go and he always will. I’ve taken a photograph of him this year on Millie’s anniversary guarding her balloons before we let them off for her.

 Balloons by B for Balloons, Stockport 

I’ve taken this photo because I want these for Leo when he is older so he can see that he was always with us on Millie’s special day. I know full well what some of you are thinking right now “well that is just strange” .. But is it? How do you know? Believe me, until you are in our position where you have to visit your child at their resting place you have no idea how you will feel, how you will act or what you will do. We have unfortunately met a lot of grieving parents since our journey began and every one of them does something different from the next person and you know what .. That is absolutely fine and no one is in any position to judge because we all have to do what we feel is best for us to get us through our tragic journeys. 

Distraction … That is my key. Distraction during this week is what keeps me sane. With the biggest lovely distraction this year being Leo … Leo has made a huge difference to us this anniversary because we have be strong for him. He’s too small to understand why we cry and he will be for a long time but one day we will tell him everything and he’ll grow up knowing all about his amazing sister.

Another distraction this week for me was being a model in a charity fashion show.
(Photograph by Joanne Thompson, follow me on Instagram – MILLIELEOSMUM ) 

Modiste in Bramhall held a fashion show in The Bubble Room and raised a fabulous £762 on the evening but they had asked me to take part in the show, something I have never done in my life or never actually wanted to, haha. 

But I said yes. The reason being is that firstly I can’t seem to say no to things I get asked to do for our charity and secondly because I thought it would be a good distraction for me this week and it turns out that it was! I can never say no to things because of the amazing people that do things for us, like Modiste hosting the show and Paul Bell, the photographer stepping in it at last minute and catching some fab photos for us. 

The fashion show was on Wednesday evening so just a couple of days before Millie’s anniversary, so it was good timing to have my mind somewhere else for a while. 

  
 (Photograph by Paul Bell) 

On Saturday (the day after Millie’s anniversary) we held a balloon release in memory of Angel children and over 100 balloons were released in a local park to us and it was absolutely beautiful but so sad knowing that each and every one of these balloons had been donated for a child that had been taken too soon.

 (We adhered to all UK balloon release guidelines)

One of the other things that we do on Millie’s anniversary is not see family or friends. We find it hard enough dealing with our own emotions and feelings on this day and we know that we need this time as our little family time and although some people may not understand this, it’s a decision that Dan and I made together. I even turn off my phones and respond later because I just don’t feel the need or want to interact with anyone but Dan and now Leo. It is really lovely that people text or us or leave us messages online but they are still there the day after and we always respond … But when we are ready. 

Again, other people will be different and being surrounded by family and friends might be good for them, whatever it takes to get through the day. 

We still have a lifetime of anniversaries to get through and we will; we will get through every single one of them together as a family. 

Millie will always be part of our family and nothing will ever change that. 

 

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This year, we have yet again launched our text line for Millie’s anniversary and you can still donate until Monday 26th October 2015 when it will be closed 

Text MILL03 £3 to 70070

(You can donate between £1 and £10) 

All donations greatly appreciated.

  
Tickets now on sale for the Christmas Market here 

Security, Sun and Celebrations 

Taking a trip through security at Manchester Airport and one of the security girls remarks, “I follow your page on Facebook, good job” – enough to make smile for just a few seconds longer in my day. Thanks lady, I needed the little perk up at that time.

You see, we were on our way for my 30th birthday treat, a week in Cape Verde. Never been there before, wanted somewhere hot, wanted somewhere peaceful, wanted somewhere new. Pretty much fit the bill.

Now this trip, we booked when I was about 8 months pregnant, not long after I booked Tough Mudder 😂. I have no idea what possessed me to book a holiday so close to the day I was doing Tough Mudder, ok I am totally guessing here that I was thinking that I was going to need the break after completing TM… I certainly wasn’t thinking about the bruises that my body would be covered in (check out the pic below) … So for anyone that may have seen me on holiday or out and about at home, no one did this to me, no one gave me these bruises other than them being self inflicted via Tough Mudder. I’m not kidding when I say this, some of them were (and still are) tennis ball sized. In fact, now they are a couple of weeks old, the colouring of the bruises are more consistent with the colouring of a standard yellow tennis ball ….. 😁 

 
On this note, thank you to everyone who sponsored me for Tough Mudder and if you think after seeing one of my bruise pics above I deserve any extra few pennies, you can still donate by clicking here.

I still struggle doing things of enjoyment that Millie should be taking part in, particular big events such as my 30th birthday celebrations. I had a few moments at home before I left, one being 2 hours before needing to be at the airport, I just needed to go and visit Millie at her resting place and talk to her before we left, it didn’t feel right not to … Once I’d been and had a chat with her , I left her resting place crying but I felt a tiny bit better.

The trip to Cape Verde was what we needed this week, a break away from everything and everyone. Weirdest part of the week … Sitting enjoy some food and a young woman constantly starting at me and then we realised she was googling me and showing her other half photos of me and it was really clear that they were trying to work out if we were who she thought we were … I facebooked a status about this on Millie’s Trust page to remind people that we are just normal and totally approachable .. It’s quite intimidating when people do things like this and just stare at us.. Just come and say hi, we’ll always say hi back. 

 

I never want to be away from Millie on special days like my birthday and certainly not this one, my 30th. So I planned our holiday to ensure that we were back the day before (today, 24th Sept)  so I could go visit our girlie on my birthday – if wouldn’t have felt right otherwise. I know some of you are reading this now and thinking “that’s a little strange, why does she have to do that?” – 

Thing is, is that I just do. I like to feel near my baby girl at special times and the nearest I feel to her is when I visit her sleeping place – you really will not understand this unless you have lost a child but I don’t actually want you to understand if you don’t already do so, because that would mean you losing a child and I certainly don’t want that. 

So today (the day before my birthday) will be spent with one of my besties, who just happens to also be my hairdresser, having my hair done and then my nails in preparation for my birthday party. This has actually now turned into a double celebration now though because it was announced this week whilst we were away that we had won a Pride of Britian Award. Full story here   

We managed to get online in Cape Verde after the announcement and we were honestly overwhelmed by the response from the public on both our website, social media and newspaper websites, you guys are so kind to us. So, when I manage to work out where I have some free time today I will attempt to find a dress for the awards ceremony next week. It always makes me laugh when we end up amazingly busy as everything has a habit of pouring into a few days once we end up with events on that we need to attend. I’m not the best of shoppers, I’m one of those women that just go into a shop when I need something in particular and I know where I will get it from,  so I guarantee I will be stressed by the end of today! Haha. 

In fact, I remember when Dan and I first went to the Trafford Centre to have a look around before a film, he said to me “I’ve never been around the Trafford Centre that fast!” 

Back to my 30th. Yes, so this is it. My last post in my twenties and Dan can no longer say he he has a wife in her twenties, haha!

See you on the other side …. x

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Millies Trust First Aid Kits Back in Stock – Click here to purchase 
 

About to turn thirty …

Some weeks are so harder than others and this week is proving to be one of them. 

Every day this week seems to have gotten that little bit harder. It’s becoming a year on year occurrence now that around this time (a few weeks before Millie’s anniversary) that I start to discover I have less patience, my sleep becomes interrupted, my emotions sky rocket, tears fall a lot easier and in general, I just don’t feel myself. Writing that doesn’t even feel right because “feeling myself”, I haven’t felt like that since losing Millie, as my blog name states; I’m a same person, different me, just like many of you out there who have been through life changing situations that have transformed you into someone that you never thought you could be.

It seems to have started to appear earlier this year, I think it may be because I’m turning 30 next week and my head has been doing a lot of pondering recently, completely unintentionally. 

It’s not that I’m having an early mid-life crisis because I’m about to hit 30 or the fact that I will be 30, not that at all. I think it’s more that I have been through so much in the past few years that a lot of the time I feel much older than that. 

If you’d have asked me at 20 where I saw myself in 10 years, it would have been in a great career that I studied at university to be qualified for, maybe in a serious relationship, possibly getting married and with children on the horizon.

Things didn’t quite turn out that way. It was never a plan that I wanted to stick to, just more where my head seemed to be going when I was finishing university.

Then I met Dan. We became a couple pretty quickly and married within 9 months of our first date. I never thought I would do things that fast. We knew we wanted children and I knew that I wanted to be married before we had any children and not long after, I was pregnant and Millie was born when I was 26, I don’t think that is young in any terms in today’s day and age but it was a lot younger that I had ever envisioned for myself in prior years – I didn’t think I would have children until after I’d turned 30 … But next week, I turn 30 and I have already had 2 children and I’ve no idea whether that’s it or whether we will have more in the future. 

Three years ago, we thought we had everything mapped out. We had a house that we owned together that we knew we wanted to sell once I’d sat my professional exams and then move into what was to be known as our “forever home”. We had our gorgeous little girl, I had completed my masters degree whilst pregnant with Millie and I was about to go back to work and sit my professional exams.

As it turns out. Life decided to throw us the the ultimate curve ball in taking our daughter away from us. 

We lost Millie. 

Then we sold our house very quickly because it was too close to where we lost Millie (literally backed onto their playing fields) and we couldn’t face living there watching other children playing on the field where we should have been watching Millie. It was too traumatising. 

I suffered badly from PTSD, anxiety and Depression and made the decision with Dan that I couldn’t go back to my job after trying on two separate occasions and falling to pieces. I was there the day Millie passed away and I suffered from horrendous flashbacks whenever I was near the place, it’s a shame as I have never been back there to see anyone either since I left. The company we worked for were fantastic with us, they really were. Dan and I were talking about it a few weeks ago and now we can look back and reflect, we realise that we would have lost everything financially if our company hadn’t have  stood by our side like they did. We can never thank them enough for what they did for us because as disgusting as it is, there was absolutely no financial assistance at all for us from the government for parents in our situation. 

This is the one time in our life that we needed financial assistance from the government and we were not entitled to even a penny to help us at the worst point in our lives.

We nearly lost each other, there were numerous occasions that we could have done because of mental health problems that we were suffering from. 

So in a few months, our whole world had fallen apart.

Our honeymoon period of marriage was over and we were facing the harshest possible reality we could have been given in life. 

We had to leave our beautiful home because we couldn’t face being there anymore and we moved into another house that we are still in now because we aren’t in a situation where we could move into our “forever home”. I know some of you will find this really sad but we don’t really refer to where we live as “home” because we have never really thought or felt as it like that, we always refer to as our “stepping stone house” because it’s just something we need to use for the time being before we get to our “forever home” in about 20 years at this rate; in our previous plans, we would already have been there with Millie and have our lovely decorated rooms with our lovely homely little bits and pieces. One of the reasons for me that it has never felt like “home” is because at the time when we had to move we were in the worst stages of grief and I don’t even remember viewing houses that we were looking at, I don’t remember choosing the house, purchasing it or even moving in. It is all one complete blur to me and it’s not nice to think of it like that.

I’m sure one day we will be somewhere that we want to call home, somewhere that will feel like home. 

We are in completely different jobs than we were in 3 years ago, jobs that we never planned or forso in our future and a job where we had to teach ourself so much in order for it to work. 

And now we have Leo. He is of course, our shining little light to come out of all this heartache and blurry years. 

So 30, new chapter? I think so.

I’m not sure what’s going to happen next. 

I’m not sure where we will be in 5 years or whether Millie and Leo will be our only children? I’m not sure where life will take me after I hit this huge milestone age and that’s ok. I’m ok with that.

Twelve months ago, I was still saying that I didn’t want to celebrate my 30th with a party. But now I will be doing with my family and friends because on our darkest days in the past nearly three years, I really thought I would never even be here to see my 30th birthday, but I am going to be and that’s something to celebrate in itself. 

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