Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Due Date

Friday 20th January is a date I've been dreading.  Poppy's due date.  In retrospect it seems silly because we knew she wouldn't be born on this date, since we were having a planned c-section at 39 weeks if everything had gone well.  But as much as I've been dreading it, I've also been waiting for the magic baby fairy was coming to bring Poppy back that day.  That little part of me left over from when I was 5 years old, that still believes in magic was so hoping maybe I would wake up from this nightmare and have my baby in my arms and live happily ever after.

Funnily enough, the baby fairy didn't visit me on Friday.  And I was angry.  SO angry.  Mostly because of the unfairness of it all.  I just want my Poppy.  My girl, who I'd waited for patiently for 3 years and would have looked after and loved with all my heart.  But instead we have an empty nursery and a small box of precious things.  So I did what most people do when they're angry...I threw things.  I kicked things.  I shouted.  And I cried.  I'm getting a bit sick of the taste of tears.

We decided we needed to do something to commemorate Poppy's due date since we knew it would be a hard day anyway.  We decided when we had Poppy cremated that we didn't want an urn in the house.  I know everyone is different, some people can't imagine not having their baby with them, in whatever form they can.  But for us, we worried that it might be too hard to always worry about someone knocking Poppy over.  Xav with a ball or a guest with an over enthusiastic gesture or my nephew climbing onto something...we just couldn't manage it.  So we asked my dad if it would be okay if we interred her ashes with my mum's grave. 

Friday morning we picked up Poppy from the funeral home.  It was the first time we'd had her in the car out of my tummy.  When we got to the shopping centre on the way home, I worried about leaving her in the car, which seems silly now, but I didn't want her to get stolen!  G convinced me it would be fine, and what was I going to do?  Carry a box of ashes in my handbag...(I probably would have if G hadn't been with me!)?

We bought a lovely tiny perfume bottle; crystal with a pink butterfly on top, to keep just a tiny bit of Poppy's ashes at home.  The lid screws on, and it sits on Poppy's little shelf.  It was a little strange putting Poppy in it, and trying not to scare Xav about burning bodies and the like.  We bought an angel candle holder to put on Poppy's grave (photo attached) and some beautiful scented candles to burn when we go to visit her.  And lastly, we bought a pink prairie rose to plant on the grave so she and mum and my brother Nathan are always surrounded by pretty flowers.

The service was nice.  I was so numb, I couldn't cry any more.  It was only small this time, just our parents and my sisters with our minister.  We poured Poppy's ashes into a small hole and each of us put some soil in with her.  We prayed for her to fly free and be happy with God.  But I couldn't cry, and neither did G.  'What sort of grieving parents are we?  I asked him when we wandered around the beautiful, peaceful cemetery after the service.  'Why didn't we cry as our child was buried?'

Sometimes G surprises me with his insight and lately he's been amazingly insightful, I must say.  'Becasue,' he replied, 'this grief is part of us now, and we know what it feels like.  Today was no more painful than yesterday was, or tomorrow will be.  It is who we are and what we live.'

And I realise he is right.  Poppy's due date was no more than another day in our grief.  It didn't feel worse or different to any other.  I was afraid of it.  Afraid my pain would be worse on that day.  But my grief has already filled me up.  There is no room left for more.  More longing, yes.  More wishing, more regret.  But grief is full.  It already hurts so much I ache with it.  I am an empty person who is full of grief.  But I am who I am.  I won't apologise for it.  If I don't cry, that's fine.  If I do, that's fine too.  Because there are no rules in this grieving parent business. 

Now the day is done, and I am a little relieved.  Because I don't have to worry about it any more.  I can stop waiting for it.  And stop secretly pretending Poppy didn't die and will arrive any minute.  There is no baby fairy.  And the pain will not swallow me because I won't let it.  I am a grieving mother.  I will always feel like Poppy is missing because she is.  I just hope that I can, someday, be whole again.  Changed, but whole.


  1. Hugs blossom, for Poppy's due date, and her interment service. I wish there was a baby fairy, I'd never even thought of that, and now I just wish so badly that there was one. I secretly believe in Santa, and the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy.

    I am not sure you're ever whole again, as there's always a part of you missing, but it gets easier to live with the new person you are as you advance in your grief journey.

    Keep writing, I am touched by your words, and your pain, and it reminds me of when I was where you are. And that's a good thing.

    Grief is not about forgetting, it's about remembering. I remember being where you are and wishing to be somewhere different, somewhere stronger, somewhere more predictable in my grief journey. Now I am there, I miss the closeness that raw new grief brings with your angel.

    I don't know grief is just so mixed up and complex. Hugs my sweet, you and X and all of your angels but especially Poppy, I hold in my heart.

    1. Dory, I think we all secretely beleive in magical things!
      You are so right about grief being a remembering thing not a forgetting thing. I am most scared of forgetting the little things about Poppy; her sweet little lips, her soft skin, her long fingers, and I NEED to remember or it doesn't seem like she ever existed.
      Thanks for thinking of us, and Poppy. All of our angels are watching over us, and continue to be part of us.
      I hope you continue to be well, and bubs is growing nicely. Hugs to HB too,

  2. I'm really touched by this entry, Bec. Tears in my eyes.

    What an insightful hubby you have. I haven't walked your path, but I have suffered a loss... and I get where he is coming from, that it is just a part of you now.

    And I completed understand the empty feeling.

    Anna (aka OceanPrincess)

  3. thanks anna. i was just reading your bb entry to whinging pg people, and i totally got your sentiments xx

    i'm very lucky in my dh. i don't know how i'd manage without him