I don’t have many words to describe how I am feeling at this very moment. Just all I know is this that the previous years on the week of my son’s passing I seemed to have coped better with his loss. Now I stand in front of grief and I am facing it again as if it happened yesterday.
My son, today four years ago I saw you on the ultra-scan for the last time. That day I was filled with hope, excitement, and a new deep surge of love for you. I felt protective of you, and I knew then how much I loved you and I didn’t dare contemplate what it would be like to not have you by my side. Four years ago today I didn’t know that my world would turn upside down. I trusted the doctors that they knew what they were supposed to be doing. I wanted you and I loved you more than you will ever know.
I remember I was in the final stages of preparing for your arrival. Even Grandma and Grandpa were excited that you were going to come. And Auntie Madeleine was excited to have you. Everyone was waiting for your arrival eagerly. So, that meant preparing everything and resting a lot.
I remember it was a cool Wednesday for September. We were clearing out the attic. Emptying it, so that a new roof could be built. We went to the social security office to find out if the government would help financially a bit for a single mom – till of course I would find a job.
What we didn’t know was this: that two days later your heart would no longer be beating. Your death an untimely reminder of how fragile life can be. Of how quickly one can pass from one life to another life. You didn’t even get the chance to breathe on this earth. I didn’t even get the chance to be your mommy. The only conclusion I came to during that time is this that life is fragile. That pregnancy is a miracle and dangerous. It can still go wrong at the end. Being pregnant, and passing through the first trimester and second trimester is not a guarantee that you will bring a crying baby home at the end of it.
Why is it that some people have to experience the heartbreak of baby loss at the end of pregnancy? And why is it that so many people can take a baby home at the end of it? Of some people who never even show an interest in their child? Why is it that the people who loved their baby so deeply have to go through the experience of losing their child and the reason being there is no reason? There is no bloody reason to why death occurred within the womb.
I often wonder now if by lifting heavy stuff while clearing the attic – did it cause your death? Did I not rest enough? Did I eat something wrong? Was it the fact that I slept on the floor and sometimes on a blow up mattress for the last three months of my pregnancy a factor in your death? What did I do wrong to deserve this? The loss of you my son? What did I do wrong? Was God punishing me?
And then every year since you died, and since your birth I go through the grieving cycle. The air is thick with memories and I remember you. I remember the events before your birth and your untimely departure from this world into the next one. Every year I go through the same ritual. I cry. I feel restless. I feel the anger bubbling up to the surface. Death surrounds me. The memory of death surrounds me. The memory of you Sebastian surrounds me. I remember you. I remember what could have been if you had not died. But I was never allowed to make any memories. Instead I had to bury you, and a part of me died the day you died.
And so I let myself grief for you. I let myself mourn you. I let myself feel every emotion under the sun. I allow myself to weep openly for what I have lost. I just wish that you did not have to die. I wish you could have lived. Oh! How life would have been so different. I would not be on the Isle of Wight. Nor would I have written a book. I can feel myself sinking into the warm embrace of the pit. Weeping.
I loved you Sebastian. I love you still very much, always will. If only… you could have lived. What would life have been like then?