'What the caterpillar perceives is the end, to the butterfly is just the beginning.' Our journey after Beatrice

(741 Posts)

Beatrice died on 24th October aged 1 year, 1 month, 1 week and 1 day. She was buried on 2nd November. As she starts her new life as a butterfly, we are left on the ground feeling bewildered and bereft. I read a short piece at her funeral, and I stand by it:

'I often felt that being Beatrice's mum was much like holding a butterfly. I was in awe of her beauty and felt so privileged that she had chosen to come to me. But, much like a butterfly, I knew that one day she would spread her wings and fly away.

When Beatrice was one day old, a kind stranger shared this poem with me, and it sums up how I feel about Beatrice:

"A butterfly lights besides us like a sunbeam. And for a brief moment its glory and beauty belongs to the world.
But then it flies once again, and though we wish it could have stayed, we feel so lucky to have seen it."

I feel so lucky to have been chosen as Beatrice's mum and I truly believe that the immense grief we must now suffer is still a small price to play for the love she brought into our lives.

Goodnight Beatrice'

I still feel her love in my heart, but I am struggling without her in my arms. I miss caring for her and kissing her. Looking at her and stroking her hair. Singing to her, always singing so many songs. I haven't sung a song since she died, but I don't want the music to leave my life as it means I have let the grief win.

Fly high little butterfly, but please don't forget all of us left behind who hold you, still so fragile, in our hearts and memories. Please don't forget me, Beatrice x

eightytwenty Fri 28-Dec-12 09:00:25

Sorry cup. Have been thinking of you all over Xmas.

Have you got any rl support - eg cruse? It won't change anything but I still feel 10 years on that my mother would have benefitted from having a professional to talk to. Grief brought up ugly emotions in us both - which I am sure is entirely normal. But having someone to find the time to listen (without 'look on the bright side' comments) might be useful.

I am so sorry about your db too. Life can be crap

matildawormwood Fri 28-Dec-12 09:15:00

Dear Cup, I know that lonely feeling so well, it's the most unexpected thing about this horrible road that we're on, just how awfully lonely it is. I just want you to know that, sadly, the way you feel IS normal if you've lost a beloved child. Every word you write - not caring if you live or die, feeling disconnected from your living children, feeling morbid and cynical, and even the fact that your children seem angry with you because they know you are not the mum they once had, I am living every bit of that myself right now and though I can't take away any of the pain, I just want to say that you are not abnormal and I do understand. I wish I didn't but I do. xxx

janey68 Fri 28-Dec-12 09:37:24

Cupoftea-there are no words to take your pain away. But there are other mums on here who (tragically) do know how you feel and that your feelings are not 'abnormal' or 'wrong', they are feelings of real grief.

On a purely practical level, are there things Anyone can do to help you with the upcoming evenings when you know you're going to feel particularly alone? Anything to adapt your evening routine which may ease your feelings a bit? Nothing is going to take away the feelings but I'm sure there are many people in RL who would support you in any little way which might help.

Thinking of you all.

Thanks for the messages. I feel guilty because I do have lots of RL support from friends- I just need to make the call and I know they will be there. I just struggle especially at night time. That's when I feel so low and alone. Everything hurts more at night.

Matilda I'm sorry you know how I am feeling, but I am so thankful that you have suggested I'm not going as crazy as I think I am...

I'm going to try for a good day today. I'm taking dd2 out shopping for a while and for lunch. I HATE going to the shopping centre without Beatrice because my hands feel empty without pushing a buggy (I've pushed a buggy for one child or another for the last 7 years, now all of a sudden...). I also hate seeing all the mums and their babies and the pregnant ladies- I'm so jealous, I want MY baby girl who was so special and beautiful and worthy of love and life. Why can they keep their precious babies but mine was snatched away? I also hate going into Next, for example, and seeing the 3 months- 5 years section. I've always had a child to buy clothes for from that section of the shop. I used to enjoy picking bits out for Beatrice. Now I see that section as a taunt, laughing at me- 'Ha! You don't belong here, no-one to buy for, move along now.'

But, I have things I need to do, and I know that dd2 will enjoy a mooch about with me. She is currently trying to choose an outfit for me so I look pretty. Hmm, it's been a long time since I felt pretty! Anyway, the day is waiting for me, I'd better go and kick its butt.

DutchOmainthestable Fri 28-Dec-12 11:19:06

Well done, Cup for doing what you do with dd2. I know what you mean with there being a lot of RL support, but you can't bring yourself to access it. Shall I ring you tonight around 9? Or would you prefer tomorrow? Or not, as you prefer. I'm here, but don't have to be 'in your face'.

thewhistler Fri 28-Dec-12 14:02:57

Cup, well done.

Grief is awful and this must be the worst, so sorry for you and Matilda.

You are sane. If you were on a high you would not be. If you were on a plain it would be even more concerning.

Children always get angry when their parents are fallible and there are curve beyond their control. It's a natural outlet.

Wish I could say something comforting, but just to say that I too think professional bereavement support has a lit going for it , when the time is right.

There are no words to take the pain away, no touch to replace the feel of Bea in your arms. I wish I could say something eloquent or constructive, but I just want you to know your posts always touch me to the core, you are an awesome woman, an inspiration to us all and you need to vent when you can. I am thinking of you today.

Thank you Dutch but I have an old friend coming over this evening to keep me company. You are very kind to think of me though. smile

Well I'm really glad I took dd2 shopping today. In all the upset and worry that Beatrice wouldn't see the beautiful decorations and lights, I hadn't really considered that the other girls would enjoy them too... blush She had a ride on the carousel and loved all the decorations. She marvelled at the big butterflies and commented that Beatrice would love them.

I've got to keep giving the girls experiences, rather than shying away from them because Beatrice can't share them too. It's not easy, but today gave me a lift.

janey68 Fri 28-Dec-12 19:01:21

So glad you had a better day x

RollingThunder Fri 28-Dec-12 19:25:22

Cup, I am in very different circumstances than you and wouldn't even start to compare. I just wanted to say that you have made me look at my own situation differently and I am very grateful.

It sounds like your dds 1and 2 see reminders of Bea in everything they do and everywhere they go, her footprint on the world is strong and will live through her sisters as well as you and her father.

DutchOmainthestable Fri 28-Dec-12 20:14:41

Glad you have some company, Cup. What do you mean:"kind to thik of me" I think of you all the time as very many others too. I've still got your teapot! grin

InExitCelsisDeo Fri 28-Dec-12 20:42:56

So pleased you had a more positive experience than you anticipated.

Hugs

MovingOnNow Fri 28-Dec-12 22:31:38

So happy you had a good day with your daughter. It's no comparison, but I lost my dad nearly 4 weeks ago and I think I was going through the motions a bit. Your post has reminded me that my oldest son hasn't been to see the lights either, I am going to get hub to take him this weekend :-). Good days and bad days. One day will be more good than bad.

minesapackofminstrels Sat 29-Dec-12 18:28:45

Glad you and dd2 enjoyed your day out. You aren't a train wreck although I understand you may feel different . I'm constantly amazed and inspired by your posts. Your post at 10.29 was just one example of how amazing you are. Taking dd2 out shopping, even though you HATE, HATE, HATE it and how awful it makes you feel but doing it all the same because you knew (rightly I might add) she would enjoy it.

I hope you find more of the days begin to be not quite as awful. xxx

thewhistler Sun 30-Dec-12 22:45:15

Well done, and I hope there are little bits of light for you sometimes, even if they seem a long way off.

It seems odd to say Happy New Year, and I can't see how you could feel happy atm but I do wish you a good year ahead, with the teaset, some how.

Trumpton Mon 31-Dec-12 03:27:23

Thinking of you through the night and holding you close in my thoughts . Sometimes pretending to enjoy things for another person opens a tiny space to let the real emotion of pleasure to glimmer .
Wishing you a calm and peaceful new year .

cup I'm sure you don't need to hear another sorry or condolence on top of the many before me but I wanted to add a message to you. I have lurked and posted during your journey with Bea and you are quite possibly the single most awe inspiring person I have ever had the opportunity to come across.

We made our own Christmas tree fairy this year...she has big sparkling blue butterfly wings and lots of white feathers...I thought of your Beatrice whilst DD and I put her together... We added stars this year and I put 9 on for my lost babies (MCs) and a few extra for Bea, Mia, Aillidh and all of the other babies and children lost by so many sad I can not empathise with how it feels to lose a child as it was hopes, dreams and thoughts that I grieve for but I know how I feel if I ever have a fleeting though of if I were to ever lose my DD and I can't even hold that thought for more than a second as it is unbearable sad

saffronwblue Tue 01-Jan-13 05:34:29

Glad you had a better day cup. You must know that no-one could judge you for how you feel and what you need to do to carry the enormous pain of your loss.

pannetone Tue 01-Jan-13 22:32:51

Thinking of you today Cup. At church I lit a candle for Beatrice and one for all of the Teaset. x

KateUnrulyBush Thu 03-Jan-13 21:35:49

Still here, Cup, I haven't posted for a while I'm sorry, not because I don't care anymore though, I just needed to keep away from this topic for my own reasons. Wanted you to know you are in my thoughts though, as we face what 2013 has in store for us.

x Kate

thewhistler Sun 06-Jan-13 19:52:45

Cup, thinking of you from the subcontinent.

Thinking of you and remembering your Bea

foofooyeah Mon 07-Jan-13 11:53:10

Cup, The new year is such a difficult time. The first year where you havent had Bea, the expectation of new things, the expectation that things will 'move on' and all you want to do is howl at the moon and be sad.

I hope that as the year progresses things become a little more bearable - but there will be terrible days and a few better days. Its just so bloody wrong that she isn't with you anymore, and the pain you feel must be so harsh and debilitating.

Thinking of you dear Cup.

Beatrice and her time with me is beginning to feel like a dream. She was with me so briefly, turned my life on its head, then left just as suddenly. I can't fathom how it was real?

I've got to go and see Dr Death on Wednesday for an appointment to discuss 'things'. I've no idea what I'm going to say.

I haven't been to her grave in so long. I have nothing to say to her there, I talk to her all the time in my head, I just don't think I can go there and do it. I know I need to choose her headstone soon, but I feel so disconnected from it all.

I wish she was still here. Somedays the pain is the only thing that reminds me she was real. What would she be doing now? How much would I smile as I gave her long, precious cuddles?

I go back to work, again, on Thursday. And then that's it I guess. Life is back to normal, Beatrice never existed, my dull life trundles along with no future, no joy. I'm so empty without her now but it's old news to everyone else.

Dutchoma Mon 07-Jan-13 13:21:44

No darling, Beatrice did exist and enriched your life so that it will never be the same again.
For those of us who have shared your journey it is not 'old hat' Only this morning I thought of you and how you were doing. In my mind I rocked you like a little one, hoping that my thoughts would somehow comfort you.
It is a hard journey you are travelling, but you are not alone.

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