As I write this, Florence is trying to reach Shay's water bottle. Florence is such a wee character. She is standing now; she can pull herself up. I do not know why this upsets me so much. I cannot seem to grasp the idea that this development is normal; I see her as a doll. She is so tiny, but there she is. Her wee curls on the back of her head are catching the sun. Maybe I am just having a moment, feeling slightly poetic, being incredibly melancholy.
I do not know. Everything is jumbled. The more Florence grows, the more upset I get. Not all the time, just some things will catch me off guard. Is it that I unconsciously think about Patrick and how I miss out on all these moments with him? Or, maybe it is because I know that there will be no more children? Have I mentioned that? We will not have any more children. We have been advised against it - how lovely. Not only was Patrick taken, but also the possibility of any more children. I know we have Shay and Florence here with us and I count my blessings every day, I really do.
I have been asked how I feel about not having any other children. I thought I was fine with it; I thought there was nothing really to 'deal' with. When I think about it, I just think, 'well, that is just how it is'. As Florence gets older though, I find myself thinking about it more. In different moments I am struck by a feeling of finality. What am I going to be like later on?
I love the stage that Florence is at - developing a personality, making conversation, learning how to walk. It is lovely to watch her and Shay together. I think, 'gosh, I will never have this again'. Maybe if it had been my decision to make... What? I would feel differently about it? Who can ever know?
I just need to accept that this is how it is. The definition of finality: 'having no possibility of further change'. That is it. This is my life after Patrick.
I have reached a point where Patrick's death needs to be a motivating factor in my life. I do not see any other way forward. I have mentioned that I finally feel ready to pursue what I want - both emotionally, but also logistically as Florence is now at an age where we do not have to be attached at the hip and she is finally allowing me out of her sight.
2017 is the start, the beginning. The more I work with this in mind, the more doors are opening. You have to believe you will get what you want in order to get it. At least, this is what people say and what is written in books. My experience is showing that this is in fact true. I had no idea of the possibilities out there.
Since putting this thinking into place and getting my 'wants' concrete, I have been given the opportunity to work for SANDS, the Stillbirth and Neonatal Deaths Charity. All these opportunities have just landed. It is amazing. I am going to Manchester in February to undertake Befriender Training; I am going to be a committee member for the charity; and have been given the reins to organise events in Fermanagh - a walk and balloon release and a Christmas carol service. But, the most radical event is the support meeting I was asked to run last week. Asked to run. What a trip.
It is amazing. When I am older and look back on my life, I want to see a life dedicated to Patrick. I want Shay and Florence to tell me that they are jealous of all the time I spend 'with' Patrick. I do not know if they will actually think this, probably not, but you understand how much I want Patrick to be a part of my days. I have three children and I am ready to spend my time on all three. There are other 'things' in the pipeline as well and this year I want to lay the foundations for them. More on those later...
The more coincidences that happen, the more certain I am that this is the way forward. 2017 is going to be a trip!
The festive period has come and gone. It was over so quickly, but that is how life seems to be heading these days. Time is flying.
I was relatively 'alright' over the festive period, I must say. I never know how I will react to holidays, special occasions, or family gatherings. The husband and I had a quiet night in to welcome in the New Year. It was lovely and peaceful. I lit a candle for Patrick just so that he was included as well. I like to light a candle for him so that 'his light' is present. In some way when I light a candle I feel as if he is still a physical part of the family, of my day, of my life. I cannot do much to include him physically, but the act of lighting a candle for him helps. I buy a vanilla scented candle and that smell always reminds me of him, which I find comforting as well.
As I went to bed, I blew the candle out. That is when it dawned on me, when all the happiness and optimism disappeared so quickly. This is another year. This is another year without Patrick. And it upset me to realise that this is it forever. No matter how many plans I make, how positive I feel about the future, Patrick will always be the thing that is missing. I crave for him. I long to hold him. I yearn over him constantly. I really do want what I cannot have. And this is it isn't it? This is how it will always be. A new year will never happen where Patrick's absense does not overshadow it.
However, it cannot be all doom and gloom. This cloud will always darken my life, but I am optimistic about this year. I have big plans for Patrick and I this year.
So, as so many have said before, watch this space. Happy New Year.