Saturday, 15 March 2014

Dear Alex, When the Lights Go Out.

Dear Alex,

When the lights go out, and here is no sound.

When the sky is black and our babies lie asleep.

When another day is over and I am another year older.

When the night falls and this day is done.

The chores I can no longer continue with, and my prayers begin.

I pray for you.

Our babies sleep in your side of the bed, my company is a million people, but you.

There is no justification, no righteousness in what has befallen you.

My shower droplets fall. They fall on my desperately in need of healing head.

No healing felt, no healing gained, no justice sought.

When the lights go out, and I have our four babies asleep, finally in bed, my heart breaks all over again.

For the loneliness, the absence, the side of the bed which is too big.

I just long for you.

Me xxxxxxxxx

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Dear Alex, My Birthday.

My Birthday with my man xxx

Dear Alex,

Gargantuan in portion, crusty, flaky topping, soggy watery base; the best porridge I have ever tasted! A bowl of tea… The kids walk in, breakfast in bed! Monty taps my shoulder 'wake up mum, it's your birthday, we have been up since 6 preparing everything! Happy Birthday, we love you so much…' And they all plant huge kisses on me and cuddle me in their fleecy pyjama'd baby arms.

Stevie Wonder is playing. They have picked a Stevie Wonder song on my phone, they could't find 'Happy Birthday to you' So they had a different song playing by Stevie. My Breakfast in bed on a tray with bunting they had made together 'Happy Birthday Mummy, We love you' around the edges of the tray. Singing Happy Birthday over Stevie Wonder, bringing in all cards and presents and a Dime bar as my present from them! A huge banner reads: 'Happy Birthday mum!'

My angels had planned every little last aspect of my morning and my day…right down to the last detail.

I have never felt so blessed.

Never felt so loved.

My babies did it all by themselves…For me

Stevie Wonder reminds me of you. His album 'Talking Book' is where our Wedding song came from. 'I believe' is the song you chose. So prophetic its lyrics.

Their huge smiling faces, their love, the things, the poems they had written me, the cards they have coloured in for me, the love they show me, who could hold it together? I cannot wipe away the tears swiftly enough.

They fill in as quickly as they can the hole they know intrinsically lies in mummy's soul. The piece of the jigsaw missing, they Sellotape with as much love and affection and thought as they possibly can.

Your dischargee meeting sees the Therapists saying they want 2 further weeks with you. Although they are not changing your functionality (a dagger in my heart); you are not motivated to walk or talk or stand or sit, you enjoy it and work at it in the sessions, so they want to continue working with you.

Your head lies on my chest, your right arm around me, and the only words I hear form you are 'I love you, I love you, I love you…lots and lots and lots and lots and lots…' the entire time I am with you.

You have no idea it is my Birthday, but the nurses encourage you to sing me Happy Birthday, and I remain in your arms the 3 hours I am with you…

Friends, family, have sent wonderful messages, sent presents, cards and I have felt wrapped up in a blanket of love and support.

I wish I was not alone tonight.

I wish you were here, and I can never express the hole that has been left in my life since you went.

But I am so full of love and gratitude for those who have wrapped their arms around me today.

I love you all, Thank you

Me xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Dear Alex, Plots.

Dear Alex,

Today has been one of those 'every last second filled' days. a day of focus, a day of family and friends and being taken out for lunch by two of my most favourite people in the whole world- my Aunty and my Grandpa.

A brief dog walk after the school run helped get the blood pulsing, some chit chat about what would unfold in the day proceeding and clearing out some of the yesterday.

Kids plot and hatch plans for my birthday, and I try not to listen overhearing 'well, mum is a vegetarian, so we can't get those' 'Alright, fish then, she eats fish sometimes…'So goodness only knows what they are planning, but they asked for money to go to the shop for a secret after school! I have smiled so much today with the love my kids and friends/family show me.

I did something very different this morning. I saw a Hypnotherapist. Who treats people for all kinds of problems, grief, bereavement, OCD, anxiety, many things. I felt like I was floating when I came out. It was an entirely different, very healing experience. It was nothing 'weird' or 'out there' it was like sleeping but being aware and awake. He took me through a lot of what I had gone through, took me back to my childhood. Walked and talked me through it. I felt pain, huge amounts of pain in my heart and throat.

Explaining this is where I keep the pain I feel, and feeling unable to express it or verbalise it to the extent I may need to then I was to breathe deeply several times.

I drifted off, I was aware of his voice, but felt I needed to go and be 'nothing' for a while.

The hour or so flew, and I am glad I did it.

It is the eve of my 36th Birthday, and I cannot believe I have been on this planet for such a time. Esmie told me I needed a badge stating '36 Today!' To which I respond that when we get older we like people knowing our age less and less, and I probably wouldn't be doing this…

As much as I dread my Birthday, as much as I do not want it to happen, as much as when I rang you today and told you the date 'The 13th March, does that mean anything to you?'


Comes your response, and my heart sinks a bit.

As much as these things I wish were different, our kids are amazing Alex, and what ever they do tomorrow, they are thinking of me and trying to make it a wonderful day-so I will show them they have succeeded in doing just that.

Me xxxxxxxxxx

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Dear Alex, The Room That Sunk.

This shot was taken on our last ever dog walk with Oliver in France before we moved back to England.

Dear Alex,

Tuesday, two days before my birthday day, another year older approaching and I sit, tissues on hand in the Counsellor's room this morning.

Able to talk about it all, everything, able to release, not worry that I am crying, talking about 'me', that is what I am there for, so I feel no guilt at just discussing me!

I am dreading my Birthday, each year that has passed with you gone has been the same. My beautiful Aunty and wonderful Grandpa are coming up to take me out for an early Birthday Lunch tomorrow, my friend is taking me out for Breakfast on my Birthday day, before I head off for yet another meeting, your discharge meeting at Exeter. Saturday night I have arranged a dinner and drinks with the girls, which will be my 3rd night out in nearly 3 years…

As I discuss at length, without interruption how the week has been, how I have been feeling and so on, I am able to face things I do not do on a day-to-day basis.

I come to many realisations, just in saying things out loud sometimes.

I breathe out my pain, cry out my soul's scars.

I try not to go under.

She asks me where I felt I was in accepting what had happened. The acceptance thing has always been a very difficult one for me. Several reasons underly this: That accepting it means I give up on hope, that accepting it means I finally have to say goodbye to who you were. It carries such weight, which was the strange thing, I fell silent for a long while after she asked me this. Then realised I had accepted it.

My heart fell.

You left me all over again in that acknowledgement.

She leans forward slightly saying 'Tamsyn, if this room could sink under the weight that I feel coming from you at the moment, I would suffocate'

So heavy was this weight, it nearly sunk the room.

It sunk my world.

It suffocated me.

I hate Birthdays, I hate them without you, you will not even be aware it is my Birthday, let alone write me a little note, or look after me and treat me to a lie in or to making me cups of tea, doing the washing up for me! Nothing. I do not care about presents from you, I care about time and laughter and companionship from you.

None of which I shall get from you.

I miss you forever.

Me xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Monday, 10 March 2014

Dear Alex, Head in My Hands.

Dear Alex,

Monday morning, time to rise at 6.30am again. Kids bounce around, school uniforms donned, porridge, weetabix, dog and cats fed. Bags packed, fruit and water in each. Washing up done, clearing up as I try and chivvy four excitable kids out of the door. Last minute signing forms, shoes found, coats on.

I sit, I watch, I see a flicker from the corner of my eye. Butterfly beats its wings, flittering up and resting near me, near enough for me to touch it, would it let me. Resting just by me, flying around me and landing again. It made me wonder that it was the first Butterfly of Spring, the first I have seen in months and a deep bluey-purply colour setting it out from the frequent Cabbage-White Butterfly we see regularly. As I wonder whether it is significant, it takes off.

"Butterfly is so elegant and beautiful, she is the essence and embodiment, the spiritual symbol of the divine feminine. She teaches grace and tenderness and the awareness and energy of another way of being.

The purpose of the life of every Butterfly is to set aside everything that was once known aside and to embrace an entirely new way of being."

This was the spiritual meaning of a Butterfly, as I discovered when I researched its meaning.

I have certainly had to do that, set aside everything that I once knew, and embrace an entirely new way of being. Although I certainly feel like no Butterfly!

You ring me, as usual, several times today, seeming flat. Tonight our last call sees you sad, 'I miss you so so so so so much' you repeat. The kids start to get out of the car to go to Gymnastics, I say I will follow. Head in my hands, I tell you how much I miss you too. Not knowing how to comfort you from such distance. I try and involve you by telling you about the kids, that Mitzi and Esmie have just got out to go to Gymnastics, that Monty and Lola and I would watch them from the Balcony.

Lola sleeps beside me, it is her turn tonight. Esmie wakes like clock-work at 11 pm and gets into my bed each night with whoever else is in there. Betsie our puppy sleeps on the end of the bed. As full as my bed is, it is now mine, not ours.

How I wish our bed was ours.

Me xxxxxxxxxx

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Dear Alex, A Family Complete Again?

Dear Alex,

As Seasons change, they bring new challenges, new hopes. They force you to pause and think.

And this weekend, despite being surrounded by friends, I have never felt so utterly alone.

Saturday night we spend with our wonderful friends who have moved recently down here fairly near by. We go to the beach the following morning, and Father and son go off with the metal detector to hunt treasure as I jump waves with our kids, my friend and her remaining two kids. Standing in front of incredible surf you would have drooled over! Two surfers paddle out... and it should be you. Memories hit me like waves crashing over the rocks. It feels so real, so recent, and how I do not end up in a heap, I do not know…

Everything slows down, people's voices are distant, I can't access the here and now because my soul has drifted into the other time where we were all there on the beach.

The only thing missing is you.

The only person missing, is you.

The rest of Sunday we spend having lunch and the whole afternoon with our other very dear friends. A family with four kids like us. The children play, I paint my toenails in the sun and look over to the hills which stretch before us, view from the garden. Sunglasses hide the tears in my eyes as my friend's husband helps Esmie ride a bike for the first time.

It should be you.

I feel like an intruder. A woman with four kids that do not fit in to 'complete' family life anymore.

I feel waves engulf me, missing you, needing you.

I ache tonight, I cry helpless tears of loneliness and uncertainty.

I just ache for you and to be complete as a family again.

Will my dream ever turn into a reality?

I will drift until then, being an intruder, being alone, hurting so badly needing you.

Me xxxxxxxxxxxx