Memories cherished as memories are made.

I have just returned from a wonderful week in beautiful Wales.

I have loved every minute of it, from the beautiful sunsets to the endless beaches.

Its been a truly wonderful week.

It was a week I so needed, time to recharge and refresh my mind.

Time to allow the words to form and the passages to write.

I am feeling stronger that ever.

My heart and mind are on the same path.

This holiday was the first time I have gone back to this area of Wales without Livvy.

I honestly believed that it was going to have to be another first without her.

Yet it wasn’t because as I have enjoyed the views, cherished the sunsets and loved the ocean I have felt Livvy everywhere.

Memories cherished as memories made.

Dogemals 2015 Newquay 2015 west wales 2015

Forgotten photograph

Last night I fell apart.

I truly just sobbed and sobbed.

I cried until I couldn’t breathe.

I was angry

I was broken.

I found myself screaming at God

The crazy thing is that nothing had happened.

Well nothing major.

I just came across a forgotten photograph of Livvy.

One that I hadn’t seen in such a long time.

You see I had uploaded it to a photo printing site that I don’t use that often, but a discount email spurred me into a visit.

As I scrolled through photos of my foster son there right at the beginning was a few that I must have uploaded over 7 years ago.

There was her sweet beautiful face.

Just looking out at me.

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For just one precious moment she felt so close.

Then reality struck and I realised she was completely out of reach.

I catch my breathe as I write that. The physical pain of her missing tightens like a noose on my heart.

Grief is a funny old journey. No thats not the truth there is nothing funny about it.

It destroys you, it slowly epps away the person you were before the loss and leaves you with a shadow of what was once.

Your heart is never the same.

I needed to cry last night.

I needed to allow myself the freedom to grieve.

To drop the facade and allow myself to feel.

Being brave is hard.

Being strong is exhausting.

You cannot live in the world of pretence forever.

I’m not ok.

I never will be.

My heart is broken.

My soul aches for my daughter.

My arms are empty.

A part of me is forever missing.

All together

My daughter returns from university today and yes I am so excited to see her.

So why did a friendly comment feel like I had been punched in the stomach?

My friend said “ I bet you are excited to have all the family back together’.

How simple and true is this comment.

Yes i am excited.

But my family will not all be back together.

You see there will always be a missing piece,

missing piece

 

An empty place at the table.

A pile of presents that have not been bought.

On Christmas day only three of my girls will be celebrating it here with me.

Heaven holds the celebration for the other.

I want to say that i’m ok about it all, that i can be happy and enjoy the season but I can’t.

The ache in my heart is getting stronger and stronger as we head towards the 25th.

I hate that on Christmas day I have to visit the crematorium, that the only gift I can give to my daughter is flowers on her stone.

I want the air to echo with her laughter, the harmony of my four beautiful girls to play.

Yet all i can hear is the silence of the missing note.

Christmas is a special time of year, I love the wonder of it all.

The excitement that builds in peoples hearts.

The joy of giving , the love that is shared.

Christmas is a time for celebration and I promise I will try.

Still I hope that it will be ok, that sometimes through this season i disappear.

Disappear to a place where i can allow the tears to fall.

Where I can allow the missing to show upon my face.

Because I cannot pretend all the time.

I just don’t have the strength.

I need to give my heart freedom.

Freedom to grieve my beautiful missing daughter.

There is only one stage for me.

September has begun and i am simply a mess.

 

It could be holiday blues.

 

It could be just plain exhaustion.

 

Or it could be that I’m just so very p*ssed off.

 

Yesterday was the first day of the new school year and it should of been the day that Livvy started Year 11.

 

Its crazy to think my baby would have been 16 next year, when the truth is she didn’t get to see double figures.

 

I don’t know how to feel right now.

 

Anger

 

Grief

 

Numb

 

Its a variety of emotions that seem to move with the wind.

 

I close my eyes and I try so hard to imagine Livvy as a teenager.

 

What would she be like?

 

Would she still be the little rock chick, dancing her heart out to Guns n roses.

 

Or would she have continued down the road she started with her love of skulls and all things gothic.

 

I imagine her sitting in her chair in Dr Martens, or maybe Converse.

 

I just don’t know.

 

 

 

It’s breaking me apart right now.

 

The not knowing what she would be like.

 

The not getting the chance to make those memories.

 

I was robbed of my baby girl.

 

She was robbed of her future

 

And its just not blooming fair.

 

Denial

 

Anger

 

Bargaining

 

Depression

 

Acceptance

 

The five stages of grief,

 

What a joke.

 

Stages are something you work through.

 

You finish one and then move on.

 

I’m not moving on.

 

I miss my daughter so much.

 

For me there is only one stage of grief

 

Simply heartbroken.

livvy3

 

 

Grief is like the ocean

Grief is like the ocean.

Sometimes it feels as if I am drowning sinking deeper and deeper into the dark.

Fighting again gigantic waves that would be a surfer dream.

Other times I can see the beauty all around me.

Moving gently as the warm water lulls around me.

It’s strange but one thing I am learning is that grief is unique. Everyone feels, hurts, heals in there own time.

Last night all I could think about was my beautiful Livvy.

My heart forever broken was tearing me inside out.

The missing had become almost unbearable.

I just wanted to hold her in my arms again.

I was angry at losing her.

Angry that the world just carried on without her.

The early hours seemed endless.

As the storm crashed outside one built up inside me.

So I cried.

In fact I cried harder that I had in a long time and it was fantastic and so needed.

When I hold on to the pain inside it consumes me. So releasing it is freedom.

So as the tears fell my anger did to.

I understand that no-one knows what is around the corner for them. Healthy children get ill, planes crash and the world at times can be a truly awful place, wars, genocide and murder.

Yet for nine years I got to have my baby with me. I got to receive the gift of being her mom and for that I would spent many more nights in tears.

Life hasn’t gone how I had dreamed. In fact I am so far of course it’s crazy. But it has given me the greatest gifts I could ever of asked for. My beautiful girls.

I miss Livvy so much and I can guarantee that there will be many more nights like last night.

That’s ok this ocean journey isn’t over yet.

But as Psalm 30.5 reminds is “Joy comes with morning “.

I am so grateful I am Olivia’s mom and I know one day we will meet again.

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Scared she will be forgotten

I have a confession to share.

This week I have found myself really scared

Scared people will forget Olivia.

That as the years pass her beautiful smile is fading from people’s memories.

The fear actually causes my heart to race and my chest to tighten.

She cannot be forgotten

She cannot be allowed to slip from your minds.

You see my girl was amazing.

Yes I know all moms will say this about their children but Livvy she was truly inspirational.

Her courage

Her wit

Her strength 

Her life 

Changed every bit of me.

She taught me the value of the moment.

How precious the here and now is.

I learned to listen,

Really listen to the world around me.

The whisper of the wind

The harmony of a bird song.

She taught me freedom

To dance like no one is watching

To sing tuneless but with heart.

She taught me about love.

True unrelenting love.

The release of your whole soul to another.

Each day was a gift wrapped up in a lesson.

A lesson of love, 

A lesson of compassion

My girl she kept on giving when all had given up.

Kept on dreaming when others had awoke.

How can she be forgotten?

Please don’t forget my beautiful daughter.

Hold her in your hearts like the gift she is.

Dance in the rain and under the rainbow she will send.

Hug each other tight with all your hearts.

Make those memories each and everyday.

Be compassionate

Be loyal 

Be mischievous 

Live life in love 

Just like Livvy did.

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I need to change my go to.

What do you do when life seems crazy and you feel like it’s all to much?

Do you have ways of calming yourself down, meditation, prayer or maybe wine?

I’m not really sure I have a method.

I seem to carry on and carry on until I have to sleep with complete exhaustion.

Only yesterday I realised I do something else when life gets stressful.

I pull away.

My phone stays silent,.

I ignore the notifications and I only communicate as and when.

It’s as if I can only cope with so much that I’m scared to open up in case it becomes more.

Yet in doing this I find myself alone, lonely.

It wasn’t always like this.

Something happened last year which left me hurting terribly.

It took away my naivety

It took away my trust

And why I have tried not to let it have a hold over me I realise it has.

My closing off and pretending I’m ok Is literally locking out those who wish to be there for me.

[Tweet “Punishing many for the few.”]

I apologise to those I have shied away from.

I see now all you were trying to do is be there for me.

I am truly grateful.

I can’t promise I won’t hold back or close off anymore.

[Tweet “But I can promise I will try.”]