I had not written an entry here for several months. Initially this was for the joyous reason of three months of morning sickness. Now I'm writing to help me say goodbye to all of that.
At almost five months pregnant I noticed that my baby was not moving very much. And then stopped entirely.
An emergency scan confirmed the worst - the baby had died.
Typing those words is so easy, it and they do nothing to convey the depths of the pain and panic I felt in the hospital. That moment has formed the worst experience of my life, and I battle daily not to get stuck in the room of that memory.
On the 6th of January I was admitted to hospital to deliver my baby.
Once again these words do nothing to take you into that room with me, nor should they. It was a private place where only me and Andy and our baby-in-spirit were.
Labour was one of the most incredible experiences of my life. The pain taught me what to do, and the terror and physical shock burnt away for a few hours.
I delivered my lost daughter, and became her mayfly mother for a few hours. She was beautiful, not scary at all. I held her for a long time.
Leaving the hospital without my pregnancy, without my daughter, was the most painful experience of my life. Once again, typing these words is simple, but putting one foot in front of the other and walking out of that place took more strength than I knew a person could contain.
We named her Lyra May, as we had intended to should she have been born as we hoped.
I share all of this because it is true and real. I share it because I'm tired of our cultures death-taboo. I share it to acknowledge all the secret sorrows our lives contain. I share it because I want to hold the experience in words, to shape it into a story and add it into the chapters of my life.
I must do this to continue.
I write it down publicly too because I've come to realise how sadly common the of experience of losing a baby is. Several women have been generous and brave enough to share their experiences with me. Their stories make me feel less alone, and their strength staggers and humbles me.
My godmother shared a beautiful letter with me. It ends like this:
"For the gift that you were once given will always be yours"