It’s me, it’s Mummy. Can I call myself that? Am I still your mother when you were never quite a person?
When does life begin? At the moment a cell is created? The moment a heartbeat bursts into life? Or is it not until the day you breathe earth’s air for the very first time?
Who knows? Except I know. You were someone. You were someone to me.
It took me a long time to find the courage to be ready for you. But I was ready, I think. I was ready to choose your name and hold you close. I was ready to face the unique agony of sleepless nights. I was ready to have a better birth and see your face and kiss your skin. I was ready to introduce you to a family who already loved you, to a big brother desperate to take care of you.
But I guess you weren’t quite ready.
In only a few short weeks I had pictured you a thousand times, in a thousand different ways. I’d wondered about your personality. I’d window-shopped clothes for you and imagined feeling you move.
But more than that. I had visualised you growing up beside your brother, completing our family and filling our hearts. I had tentatively allowed myself to consider the possibility that you might heal some of the hurt from my first early days of motherhood.
I had tried to hold back this runaway train of imagination. I had tried to be realistic and cautious. But how it that possible? When a tiny new life flickers inside how can you help but watch that life unfold?
When you left you took that vision of future with you, at least for now. But worse, you took you with you. Now we’ll never know. Were you a boy or a girl? Were you dark-haired or blonde? Were you confident like your brother or shy and reserved? What kind of life would you have had? Were you sick, broken or in pain? Was it you or me? We’ll never know.
All I have is one picture of you, taken from the inside. One test that proved you existed, at least for a while. And a few weeks of thoughts that seem less real with every passing day.
I miss someone I never even knew.
What makes someone, someone? Where do our souls come from and when do we receive them? On the inside or outside? Do I still get to meet yours in this life, are you waiting for another chance? Or are you gone now – drifting away on a peaceful breeze?
I am full of questions now, you see. But one will remain unanswered, and the pain of it will live in my heart forever, beside my almost-memory of you.
To find out more about Baby Loss Awareness Week (9-15th Oct) visit The Miscarriage Association.