Everything happens for a reason. Isn’t that what everyone says?
June marks the Anniversary of, what would have been, the 7th birthday of my LLO – my Lost Little One.
Not a day goes past when I don’t find myself pondering the baby that never was. I don’t dwell or mope, but I do catch myself thinking of her at least once a day, every day, and without fail she gets blown a goodnight kiss.
I knew in my heart, right from the start, that something wasn’t right when I fell pregnant. I couldn’t put my finger on it, and having only been pregnant once before, I had minimal experience, but my gut told me that all was not well. Based entirely on my mother’s instinct, we booked an early scan. Learning that my instincts were right took my breath away. How could this be? I hadn’t bled, I had no physical symptoms whatsoever to suggest that there was a problem and yet, there on the screen, I stared at a clear line which was the foetal pole, and no flickering heartbeat.
Perhaps the hardest week of my life lay ahead.
I wrestled with the need to just get it over with and for my body to ‘reject the pregnancy’ as it is somewhat coldly termed, with my heart yelling as loud as it could to hang on in there and prove them all wrong. When I finally did start to miscarriage, there was no relief – just very raw pain.
Every year, on the 20th of June – my LLO’s due date, I have a bad day. I don’t mean to, I don’t plan to, but I can’t help it. It creeps up on me no matter how hard I try to push it down, and as much as I try and ignore the grief, it’s still there and it bubbles up each year without fail.
But for the first time, this year was different.
Ever since I became a mum, I have wanted four children. Four was my number. And no matter how hard I have tried to convince myself along the way that 1 or 2 or 3 would work, in my heart, it was always four. Never five, always four.
But it has not been an easy path for us. I think people assume if you have four children that they have all come easy and of their own accord, but that’s not been my journey. We have had our fair share of fertility treatments, all sorts of prodding, poking and investigating, and have had our patience tested to the max – which for someone who would open her Christmas presents in November given the choice, has been pretty challenging!
But now we have four. My beautiful daughter Chess completed our family just over 12 months ago, and she is the perfect finishing piece in our family jigsaw. She is everything we could have wished for and so much more, and our family would not have been whole without her. And had it not been for losing my LLO….well, that doesn’t bear thinking about it. Chess was always meant to be.
I will never forget the baby I never held in my arms but who will always be in my heart.
But instead of it just being about missing her, this year, I was also so grateful to her, grateful for the pain I went through, grateful for that bit of my journey in a way I have never been before, as it is part of the story that has led me to the perfect jigsaw I have.
I do believe that everything happens for a reason. Sometimes those reasons are impossible to understand. Sometimes, they are so painful to an extent you could never put into words. But there is a reason. I could never have imagined getting to a point where I understood my miscarriage and accepted it. But because of Chess, I not only accept it but I am also grateful for it.
I hope by sharing this post, it brings courage and hope to those of you on your own journeys, those of you who have suffered a loss and those of you going through tough times for whatever reason right now. It’s taken 7 years for me, but I can now see the reason why my path took such turns. It is my hope and wish that your reasons will also become clear.