Dear Little H,
This has been bubbling around my head for a while now, but the weeks since your arrival have flown by so quickly, I haven’t been able to get anything down. You are sleeping for now though, giving me a chance to turn these feelings into words, though I’m not really sure where to begin.
So many times I wondered if you would ever come, if your big brother S would be our first and last baby. We were so grateful for him of course – our little whirlwind miracle, and if he was the beginning and the end – well, that was in no way shabby.
And yet, we didn’t feel done. We wanted very much to have another child and wished for you so long before we knew you. When S was one and I became pregnant, we could hardly believe our fortune – how easy it had been and how things were sewn up for our future. For a week we thought our story was written; dates, age gaps, a brother or a sister. And then, the walls came crashing down and we lost the precious promise of our second child. After just one night in hospital, it was all over and I was back home with your dad and brother. Physically, I healed, but my heart couldn’t let go of what might have been – should have been, I felt – and the little life who never got to be.
It was around then I heard Amy McDonald perform this 80s ‘Boy Meets Girl’ song, and everything stood still for a few minutes. I had heard the song so many times before, but not like this and the lyrics spoke just to me,
‘I hear your name whispered on the wind, it’s a sound that makes me cry.’
(From ‘Waiting for a star to fall’ by Shannon Rubicam and George Merrill)
Our little star had fallen, but not into our arms. I cried and hurt, and then knew I wasn’t prepared to let it be over just yet.
The months passed by and every day I thought about what the future might hold. I was happy, but at times the uncertainty hit me, hurt me – for what we had lost and for what might never be. The following spring we handed over our savings in exchange for the chance of a miracle, we took their odds, injections and hormones, and we hoped.
Every day we hoped.
It didn’t work of course, and then I really did think it was the end. Everybody has limits and I was starting to worry about losing the next few years on a near impossible quest, should we just find acceptance and move on?
I’ll never know what I would have done, how much further we would have been prepared to push in the end, because I suspect letting go would have been even harder than carrying on. I didn’t have to find out how much hope could propel us forwards because then, you arrived.
Our wish, our hope, our little star. You are a completely different kind of miracle, but undoubtedly, a miracle nonetheless. Somehow, I was pregnant again. And this baby wasn’t going anywhere.
I listened to the song again, and throughout the time I carried you inside me. You probably know it as well as I do, and I love how my out-of-tune warbling helps to calm you when you are feeling fraught.
‘…Waiting for a star to fall, and carry your heart into my arms, that’s where you belong in my arms, baby…’
( From ‘Waiting for a star to fall’ by Shannon Rubicam and George Merrill)
I’ll write about you a lot over the months and years – sometimes I’ll get it down, sometimes it will stay in my head. I’ll write about the funny things you do, about your lively character – already so evident in your big smiles and fierce shouts. I’ll write about our family – the good times and the bad – and I’ll write about how you make me proud, keep me on my toes and bring me to my knees.
I’ll write about the things we do together, our house full of boys, and sometimes; I’ll try to find a way to write about how much I love you, though I suspect I’ll never succeed in explaining the magnitude and depth of my feelings.
For now though, through the bleary eyes of little sleep and big adjustments, I just want to say that you are the most beautiful shining star I have ever seen, and I am so thankful you chose to fall on us.