Anyone who knows me knows I’m not really that great with dates. I don’t mean dates as in mother/son dates, or father/daughter dates (I love a day out with “The Old Boy”), nor dates as in dates with Mr GG but dates as in remembering birthdays or anniversaries. However, there is one date that sticks firmly in my mind … 10 January 2002. That was the day that the first of our babies was born straight into heaven. I can’t remember with total accuracy the dates that any of our other babies went to heaven, I remember the emotional and physical pain but not the actual dates.
For me the dates aren’t important, but I will never forget each of those little lives, little people that I never got to meet, personalities that I didn’t get to know, I don’t even know if those little people are boys or girls … but they are my children. They’re as much part of me as my amazing GG boys are.
Just as Granny is very much an important part of the lives of our boys (although none of them ever met her), our four unknown (to us) children are part of our family … the Junior GGs talk about them from time to time, asking questions or pondering what life would have been like with seven children jumping around (I feel slightly overwhelmed at that thought … I’d definitely be much more grey!).
Every year on 10th January I feel a pang as I remember my unknown children. I often have a little cry as I give thanks that my four children will never face the heartaches that the GG boys will have to face … they won’t be at risk of bullying, or heartbreak over a first love, they won’t be ill or get hurt when they run too fast and trip over their feet. I miss them though.
On this day each year I grieve the memory of my babies, I wonder what life would have been like had they lived. I don’t regret having any of my children, not for a minute. Experiencing the pain of losing a baby has changed me, made me more compassionate (I hope) and made me more determined to make the most of the privilege I have of being a parent at all. I often feel miffed that the excitement of pregnancy was taken from me … after the first time, the feeling of seeing a positive pregnancy result was apprehension rather than anticipation … fear at the potential pain of losing another baby but, at the same time, a little voice telling me that this one might make it! Talk about mixed emotions.
I’m sad today, sad but also content if that makes sense. I’ve been blessed with seven children and give thanks every day for the three that I get to spend my life with. However, most years on 10th January I hide away at some point … this year I’ll be shutting the curtains early and snuggling on the sofa for a movie night with the GG boys who are never slow to give me a hug when I need one like I do today … blessed indeed.