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.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012


Experiencing the death of your child alters everything; it fundamentally changes who you are. Sometimes I still don't quite know who I am any more. Who am I? I don't recognise me, and the bits I do recognise I don't always like. 

This is going to be a hard post to write. 

Sunday morning, 21st October 2012, my maternal grandfather died. 

He was 89 years old, had myleloma (a type of cancer of the blood), a huge aneurysm in his stomach and dementia. Over the last four years since being diagnosed with the myleloma he had had multiple infections and illnesses, and long hospital stays because of his impaired immune system. It wasn't the cancer or a burst aneurysm that killed him, that was threatening to kill him for so long, but a chest infection. He died at around 10.00am Sunday morning after surviving Doctors predictions and expectations time and again over the last four years. I wonder if he knew it was happening?

I am ashamed to say that although I am sad, especially for my Mum who has lost her remaining parent (my Nana, her mother, died twenty five years ago), I'm not feeling distraught. I'm sad, that is all. Shouldn't it be more? This is very different to how I felt when my paternal grandfather, Grandad, died very suddenly five years ago. 

Life was different then, I was different then. I knew little of death then. I know too much now. 

I'm ashamed that I hadn't seen Grancha for months, I should have gone more often. Although I am pleased that he had at least met Alexander. I know that hospital visit had been a boost for him and he'd enjoyed meeting his great-grandson.

I'm ashamed that I struggled with Grancha's illness since Anabelle died. I've struggled with what he has represented to me. Not him personally; but a world where sick old people stay alive while my baby daughter died. That isn't the way it is supposed to be. I struggle to accept our reality. And there is that bit of me I don't like; the hurting, horrible girl who resents other people. 

Another family death, planning another funeral, is making me relive that week of our lives. That week from Anabelle's birth until we said goodbye. Sitting there in my parents living room, talking with another funeral director, talking of coffins and flowers and services has brought it all back as if its happening again to me now. 

Isn't that incredibly selfish? Instead of being distraught for my grandfather I am grieving my baby girl and the injustice of it all. 

Today I've cried for Anabelle.   Cried for the life we don't have and the regrets that remain. I cried because I so desperately want to kiss her one more time and wish I had turned around one more time in the funeral home and held her in my arms. I cried because my arms ache for her, my baby girl. I cried because I didn't put socks on her to keep her feet warm. I cried because I didn't take a photo of her coffin and the inscription of her name on it. I cried because she was placed in that deep dark ground before I'd touched her coffin one last time. All the things I can't do or undo. I cried because she was taken away from me, from us, far too soon. 

I cried because my Grancha's death is impacting on me in all the wrong ways. 

Grancha; George Henry Needs 12th September 1923 - 21st October 2012

Me and Grancha on my wedding day, 1st August 2009. 

Monday, 22 October 2012

The Big ONE

Alexander's birthday; perfect. 

It really was. Exactly what we had wanted for him. A weekend full of treats, fun and laughter surrounded by all our closest family and friends. A very different kind of first birthday but in many ways the same as his sisters; the very best we could do for Anabelle and the very best we could do for him.

Now at a one year, one week and one day old I'm finally getting around to doing his birthday and 12 month post!

Xander had a wonderful rainbow Waybuloo party day! Rainbow paper, rainbow foods, rainbow presents and a sensory Nara land with the Piplings to play in all afternoon! 


One of my favourite presents! 

Doodle and Crumb

Me, Mummy and Daddy

My own Nara

Waybuloo Cake

Blowing out my candle
 Alexander's growth has slowed down a lot, infact he has lost weight over the last month; 7oz! So at a year old Alexander weighs 22lb 7oz after being born at 8lb 13oz, an entire weight gain this year of 14lb 10oz! He is still firmly in his 9-12 month clothes currently.   The health visitor wasn't at all concerned about the 7oz loss and put the loss down to the busy little boy he has become. Now Alexander can crawl he is constantly on the go. I really don't think he sits still for more than a minute at a time and even then his arms are busy doing something! Not to mention the speed at which he can cruise around the furniture now; he spends all day getting up and down!

At a year old, Alexander still only has 3 teeth. The third popping through just days before his birthday. The 4th and possibly 5th are very close on the horizon if his gums are anything to go by though.

His play skills are becoming more refined all the time. Xander is becoming very quick to catch onto the concepts of a toy now. For example, he was given a car garage toy for his birthday, with a lift to pull up and push down, he was only shown once and he's remembered what he has to try and do, although it stiff for him  to do on his own at the moment. He also had a hammer the shapes through the holes thing and it is very entertaining to watch him tap and hammer the shape after being shown what to do. Xander is starting to play 'properly', exploring, learning.

I tell you what though, I dread to think what his 'terrible two's' tantrums will be like if the strops he has now are anything to go by! Yes, already we have the proper arching back strops while telling me off very loudly. This usually involves going in the pram or car seat when he does not want to, food being finished or what he hates even more; getting dressed. Xander has decided he absolutely hates getting dressed and a strop is almost guaranteed! I'm sure he would happily never get changed or indeed just stay naked if I would let him!

He has such a gorgeous little personality now, even with the twice daily strops getting dressed! hehe! He is endearing, happy, mischievous, cheeky, loving, funny and playful, and so much more!  

I think our boy is so busy learning new things he has forgotten how to sleep. Full nights sleep this last months have become very few and far between! My good little sleeper that emerged so early on had lulled us into a false sense of security! Now we seem to be regularly up with him two or even three times a night.  I believe there is a degree of separation anxiety responsible for this, along with the usual teeth troubles and just being such a busy learner.   Alexander has had a lot of change over the last month; he has had to get used to a new routine, one that involves not seeing me for a great length of time for three days a week, he has had to get used to new people starting nursery, he has learnt how to crawl properly and cruise properly, now he is learning how to balance ready to walk. It is no wonder he is feeling a little unsettled and looking for reassurance through the night!   It does make for one very tired Mummy and Daddy though.

He is just wonderful. Could I beam anymore?! This little boy who turned our world upside down yet a bit back together again. This little boy who has allowed us to heal a little bit, smothered in all the love I have for him and his sister, yet still feeling I could burst!  Absolutely the meaning of rainbow; filling our world with colour through the storm, biblically a promise. Our promise of new brightness in our world. Our rainbow.

Happy birthday precious boy! We're so looking forward to enjoying your second year with you! 

Me and Mummy

I am ONE!

Sunday, 7 October 2012

T is for...

... this time last year...

I realise I never finished the A-Z blog challenge in April, but thought now was as good as time as any to have a go at finishing it!

So this time last year I was about to turn 36 week pregnant with Xander, I was a few days away from being admitted to hospital to be induced. All I could think about was getting him out alive; it felt so close yet still so far.  I remember manically monitoring his every movement sick with worry that on this final stretch he would be taken away from me.  

And now, next Sunday, Alexander will turn one!  This year has passed in a blink of an eye and this is what a first birthday build up should be all about, reminiscing for the right reasons, overwhelmed for the right reasons. I keep staring at my boy is awe, my beautiful very nearly one year old boy! 

It is amazing, I cannot remember what out lives were like before we were parents; angel parents or here on earth parents. My children have become all I know. 

Monday, 1 October 2012

I Believe In Angels

I have a dream, a song to sing,
to help me cope with anything.
If you see the wonder, of a fairy tale,
you can take the future even if you fail.

I believe in angels,
something good in everything I see,
I believe in angels, 
when I know the time is right for me,
I'll cross the stream - I have a dream. 

I have a dream, a fantasy,
To help me through, reality.
And my destination, makes it worth the while,
pushing through the darkness, still another mile.

I believe in angels,
something good in everything I see,
I believe in angels, 
when I know the time is right for me, 
I'll cross the stream - I have a dream. 


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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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