I think that in life, there are many times that you want to shut away and not think about too often. But sometimes there are things that transport you right back to those moments, sometimes without warning.
Yesterday when I wrote my blog I was transported back to the difficult times in our relationship and felt all those angry feelings again, but unnecessarily because those times were in the past and have been discussed, dealt with and we have moved on. On reflection, I probably shouldn't have gone into as much detail as I did, as dragging it all up again doesn't really help anyone and doesn't make Harry's Dad feel great either. So forgive me, I should have engaged my brain before letting my fingers type out my very personal tales... It is funny how when I was writing it, I felt like I was back in that time all over again.
The same thing happened this week when I heard the very sad news that a friend of a friend gave birth to her little boy, and sadly he was born asleep. How awful to know that someone else is now experiencing that sharp, horrible pain that I did on that very sad day. I felt like I should get in touch with this mother and wrote her a letter as I was writing it I was remembering the feelings and emotions I felt on those very early days and it was strange to re-experience them again. I was taken back to the hospital room, remembering looking out of the window at the people coming and going in the car park, wondering what on earth has just happened.... I remember a nurse coming into my room offering cups of tea and asking when I was due or if I knew what I was having and feeling very strange.... not knowing how to respond to that question as I had given birth and it not turned out the way we had all planned. The first of many awkward moments.
I remember having to start making funeral arrangements and wanting the best for our little boy. I remembered sitting at the computer with my mum playing music and trying to decide what was right. Strangely, this evening I was caught off guard when Strictly Come Dancing played one of those songs "Somewhere Over the Rainbow". Immediately, I was transported back to the church. Stood there in the doorway, clutching onto Harry's Dad's arm, as he was carrying Harry in his tiny white casket. As the song played, I was there in the church, slowly walking down the aisle bringing our son into the church where William was christened, but instead we were there to say our goodbyes. Seeing my family in floods of tears and knowing nothing anyone could do would make it better.
When I visited the neonatal unit and were discussing improvements to palliative care on the ward, we talked about taking footprints and handprints. When we talked about this, I was transported back to being in my hospital bed, high on morphine, in this surreal experience of seeing my newborn hooked up to all this equipment and having nurses help my husband and my mum paint Harry's hands and feet to make keepsakes. I was, at that time, clinging on to the 50% chance that Harry would be ok and couldn't understand why we were doing this as Harry was going to be fine and pull through. The nurses also gave us a beautiful blue knitted bag that they put his name tags and a tiny piece of his hair in. These things I have kept in a special box, of my tiny treasures from Harry's short time. I have also kept the babygro he was dressed in when we held him for the one and only time and the smell on this piece of clothing takes me back to seeing him so peaceful in the funeral parlour.
All these times are so painful so it is no wonder my brain has shut these memories away, but I try to smile through the tears as while it hurts, they are my few precious memories of my little boy and are things I want to hold onto forever.