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, 7 July 2013

I'm Back On Facebook

I spent a few days beside myself. A new kind of  'not myself'. Worried husband.

Then another few days feeling bewildered and a little lost. 

Exhausted with grief in my world where no-one really understands. I felt like I was being pushed under, pushed to do something drastic, like reveal the true horror of the day Anabelle was born; share the most private and intimate parts of our grief and exactly why I fall to pieces through June. I'd reached a point where I didn't know what else to do. 

Another week on and I'm relieved I had given myself a self-imposed blogging and Facebook ban for a little while. So I sat on my hands. I'm glad I did. I'm an over-sharer in many ways, I've lived life with social media not far behind. But sharing the most intimate details of Anabelle's birth would have been a step too far, even if they would really reveal the full extent of our pain, my flashbacks and nightmares. 

Nevermind anyone else, it would have been a step too far for me, to lay every moment bare here would have hurt me. These  unshared details of 21st June 2010, are precious yet some of the horrific moments with our daughter. Our memories. They are what haunt me, but all we have left at the same time. 

Back in the thick of the storm last week I found myself questioning my state of mind. This week I'm finally going to explore that further and get some support in place while I recover from the latest low. Following an appointment with my midwife I've been referred to the Dr to access some trauma counselling. Because three years on we still live post-trauma. 

Day to day I may appear strong; what other choice do I have? Survive or constantly drown. 

But just underneath the surface is a frightened, traumatised and fragile girl still learning to live with the forever without her baby daughter.  Forever is an unpredictable and big place. 

Sometimes I drown. 

At some point, always, for the rest of my life, I will drown.

Drowning in June is a given. 

June has moved into July; it felt like an instant weight off my shoulders. 

A week into July, some timeout and although I'm still feeling emotionally fragile, I'm also feeling much calmer. Calmer is good. 

I've spent the last fortnight watching films with my husband because I've spent next to no time on the laptop. I've read a book, possibly for the first time since having Anabelle, and indeed since I've had Alexander. I've listened to lots of Emeli Sande and reflected a lot over her lyrics, as always seeming to sum me up perfectly.

Reading blogs that could also sum me up perfectly. Edspire, whose baby daughter, Matilda Mae, died a little over 5 months ago wrote this post this week. Everything about it rang true, but especially the last paragraph, because it is still that, three years on. It may still be that forever. 

In many respects this weekend I've come on leaps and bounds as it were.

It may seem small fry to some, but this weekend has been of huge significance to me. After three years of not being emotionally able enough to hold a baby that wasn't my own, I've overcome that hurdle because a friend allowed me to feel perfectly safe around her with my grief whilst I took this monumental step. This weekend I held a baby girl for the first time since holding my own baby girl. I don't think it means I could hold every baby yet but I felt safe enough to cuddle this one, and the best bit was; it felt lovely. Alexander was totally mesmerised by her too and enjoyed his own cuddles, smothering her in kisses and sharing and showing her toys; I hope that is a sign of things to come with his little brother or sister!

Not only did I overcome that hurdle but today I stood in church and became this little girls godmother. What an honour and what epic progress on our After Anabelle journey. Three years ago playing this part in another girls life, or any baby's life, would have felt impossible, too painful, too soon. I can't pretend there is no nerves at all about the emotional logistics of having a goddaughter, but her Mummy knows and is gentle about that. Specific circumstances, a specific and special friendship gave me the gentle kick up the bum to step up and be important to a different kind of daughter. 

So you see two weeks of  blogging and Facebook silence, of stepping back and re-evaluating lots of things in my life has done me the world of good, even the wobbly bits. So tonight I'm logging back on, because if I can take the leaps I've taken this weekend then Facebook in comparison, is nothing. Hoping feeling calmer remains.

It is lovely to see you all :) 

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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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