Saturday, 1 March 2014

Matilda Mae Remembers

Today I attended the Matilda Mae Remembers Service organised by Jennie to remember Matilda Mae and all babies gone too soon.  

One reading in particular stuck in my mind: 
Gone From My Sight by Henry Van Dyke:

I am not sure why it struck such a chord with me, maybe because it is as much about fact as emotion or religion.  Because regardless of what you believe, nothing really disappears, everything goes somewhere, but maybe not always in the form it once was. 

There were three Mummies who bravely stood up and told their story.  Three very different stories.  One Mummy miscarried her twin girls before 24 weeks of pregnancy and therefore in the eyes of the law they never really existed; another was aware early on in her pregnancy that her son had a heart defect and would not survive life outside the womb; he lived 31 minutes; and then there was Jennie who lost her 9 month old daughter to SIDS.  Although each had a very different story to tell, none of the mothers’ grief was any more or less than the other, none of the situations were easier than the other. Three mothers joined by their shared experience of a situation no Mother should face.

We were shown a slide show of photos donated by many parents of their babies in the sky.  Many of the little faces staring back at us were not of tiny, fragile newborns, but of healthy smiling robust babies.  The parents of these babies would have had no idea when taking these photos that their most precious gifts were to be taken from them.  I found this not only immensely sad but also utterly terrifying!!!  

Baby B is only 12 weeks old.  Younger than many of the babies in the pictures.  It is almost all consuming to see you have no idea what the book of life has planned for you.  I wanted to run out of the church.  To go and find my baby boy who was being walked around by his Granny for the duration of the service.  I wanted to grab him out of his pushchair and cuddle him and never let go.
In reality though, I stayed.  I stayed and lit a candle for all those babies in the pictures; I shed tears for their parents who would not see them grow; and I sat quietly consumed by my own fear of an unknown future.

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