Our beautiful baby daughter Anabelle was born sleeping June 2010.
Blessed with the screaming arrivals of our gorgeous rainbow sons,
Alexander October 2011, Zachary November 2013 and Lucas July 2016.

After Anabelle - Raising Rainbows
Heartbreak. Joy. Death. Life. But most of all Love.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

The Third Year

Someone once said to me that the first year after a bereavement was the hardest.

Before Anabelle, the only person really close to me that had died was my Grandad. His death was very sudden and unexpected, we were shocked, devastated. He died on his 81st birthday. Recently Jon found a video of him with sparklers on his 80th birthday and as yet I can't bring myself to watch it incase it makes me cry, his absence continues to affect me. 

But Grandad's death was and is very different to Anabelle's, incomparable. Grandad was old, his death at the time was unexepected, but it was eventually expected. It was always within the realms of possibility it could happen, would happen. We expect our elders to pass away.  In the case of Grandad, yes the first year was the worst. Missing him at Christmas, birthday's, special days. I cried on my wedding day because he wasn't there. Grandad left a huge gap, I miss him terribly still but his absence is accepted now, because his death was in the natural order of things. 

For Anabelle we are now into our year of thirds. It doesn't feel any easier than year one, neither did year two.

The initial shock is gone, the hazy bubble I first lived in has gone. But emotionally? It hasn't got any better.    In my limited number of bereavements; it is entirely different when your child dies. Life shattering beyond repair. The one bereavement we don't ever expect to bear. 

Instead of the only the first year being the hardest for your precious child, is it the first five years instead? Or the first ten?  When does it become more accepting? When do you sort of 'figure it all out'? 

The pain is as ever present as it was. Going through another birthday into another year doesn't separate us further from the hurt. It just means we have to live through another year of anniversaries, difficult dates, difficult days. Foreverness. 

What is different, better is 'the face'. I've got better at 'the face'. The one I wear day to day in the outside real world. My appearance is one that says 'I'm fine'. I'm becoming ever better at separating the me in my professional life from my personal, for the most part on a bad day I'm better at burying the presence of pain socially. In real life, for the most part I'm jolly. But then underneath the fa├žade, only here and to my best friend, sometimes my Mum, sometimes Jon, do I really divulge when I'm hurting.  I'm much better at writing about it than I ever have been talking about it. 

What a complicated long road I'm walking. The first year wasn't the hardest, every year still is. 

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Caz
After Anabelle - Raising Rainbows. I'm Caz, Mummy to beautiful angel Belle and my wonderful rainbow boys, Xander, Zachy and Luc. Wife to Jon. Twitter @cazem Instagram @cazzyem
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