When you experience a death you change. You lose a part of yourself. You may improve or feeling happier. You likely feel worse and different for all the wrong reasons.
Birth of our children teaches us many things. It’s a life lesson and changes you for the better in majority of cases.
So when that child dies before their birth you change even more. You learn lessons but not how to be more patient, how to change a nappy… you learn to cope without love. You change.
What I’ve learnt
With Elva’s passing my first lesson I’ve mentioned before is I’ve learnt I can love unconditionally. I’ve learnt I was always capable of loving unconditionally and I always have loved all my children in this way. I just never recognised it before. Looking at your child in that ‘state’ is sad, its hard and some just can’t do it. Some regret looking some regret not looking. Either way when you fall in love in that moment you are looking at your baby in a state many never see their child in and you fall hard & fast.
You’ve never experienced love at first sight? That’s not abnormal I have twice and the second time was Elva. Hard & fast trust me. You see past the still chest, the vacant face, the floppy limbs and you see beauty. You see your features in miniature. You see your dreams & hopes dashed but you also see what you did create. Perfection.
I’ve learnt how much people care. People who I thought would be there for me no matter what simply aren’t. People I don’t generally have a lot of contact with suddenly come forward offering support and being there despite not knowing each other all that well.
You learn how many fools there are too.
I’ve learnt that I can be brave & strong. I don’t feel it but I’m still here. 5 weeks on I get up every morning, I get dressed 9 times out of 10 and I eat something. That in itself is strength. I have done more but those basics those show courage, those show hope.
I’ve learnt to some degree that I’m not that bad a mum. I’m not perfect, I still feel I do more harm than good with my kids and get too much wrong. They have proven this past month what qualities we have instilled in them, qualities I didn’t know they had.
I’ve learnt I’ve more good qualities than I ever thought.
They’ve never needed to show those qualities before so how would I know they were there till now. Jem has shown me how he can love unconditionally. He’s shown me love at first sight exists even to the young. He’s shown a love so strong he immediately loved Elva and it didn’t seem to phase him the pictures he saw were death pictures.
His first response to Elva was ahhhh she’s so cute & tiny. An unnamed person’s response was zilch. He’s shown more love and compassion through his actions in the space of a month than I have seen off some adults in a lifetime.
He’s also shown a great loss. He is grieving deeply and right now I don’t know how to help him.
Leif is younger and still not in full human mode. However he has shown a great gentleness towards Elva when he’s met her. He doesn’t understand and it’s clear to see his first brush of death has affected him too. However he also continues to love Elva. He points to her pictures and says hi. He kissed a picture of her today and when asked he says yes he does love her.
He’s shown he understands more than toddlers let on they do. I know they understand but this is a lot deeper than even adults can comprehend. Yet he’s understood there is deep hurt in our house right now. He’s learnt to not call daddy when I cry but to come hug me himself and say ahh mummy.
He is a lot closer to Jem too. He now allows Jem to hug him and comfort him unlike before. He’s also accepting Jem for who he is and will indulge Jem’s wrestling needs, but knows when to say no. Jem hasn’t learnt to listen though.
I’ve learnt my family don’t care during the hard times. They shy away and try brush it off like everyone else. I’ve learnt I never relied on them and I’m less stressed being apart from them.
I’ve learnt to trust my instinct also as best I can. I’ve learnt I’m happier trusting my instinct too it calms me and it’s rare its wrong.
You learn a lot from a bad situation and you’re not always glad of it. But it’s your lesson and you’ve got to experience it whether you like it or not. I guess you could say these are my positives from a bad situation.