Today my darling, I feel you about me but I’m not crying and I’m not sad. It was your third anniversary a couple of days ago and although it wasn’t a great week I got through it. Three years and Four days ago I last heard your voice, three years ago and two days ago i last saw you physically but today I feel you all around me and I want to thank you for that my little bubba.
It’s Jim and my first Easter in our new apartment so I’m inviting grandma, Zoëy and of course Leigh round for turkey and ham dinner. Trying to set new traditions for our family as you and grandad are not here to do our old traditions. It’s still so hard without you I can’t believe it’s nearly three years why doesn’t it get any easier. I miss you so much my life just doesn’t seem worth it. I still long for the day I join you and I know I’m not supposed to feel like this but I do, not every day but most days.
I know I’m lucky to have a beautiful grandson now and a daughter to be proud of but the yearning to cuddle you, to hold you in my arms is still so strong, I simply can’t imagine not feeling this way,
Gran and I are still traveling the world and trying to live life to the full as we promised you and grandad but the novelty soon wears off and your dragged back to reality.
If I could ask one request from you & grandad could you please send someone for your sister. CeCe (Zoëy) makes out she’s so strong and independent and she is but she, as you know, struggles on her own with Leigh, my one wish is for her to find a special person to look after her and help her bring up Leigh together. She certainly deserves it after what she’s been through.
Happy Easter my beautiful girl, mommy loves you so much.
Until we meet again my angel
Thoughts of you fill my mind so much this last week my darling Órla.
Leigh just turned two and is growing into a beautiful little boy, it scares me to think that he is quickly growing and will soon reach and go past your 9 years. I’m so lucky to have such a beautiful grandson in my life but I can’t help feel how cruel life is. I would give anything to have you back.
I of course miss grandad too but he lived a good life and I had him for 46 years as my daddy, your life was so short and full of pain. How can god have been so cruel?
I’m as happy as I can be in this world without you, I’m in love with a whole new chapter beginning for Jim and I in our new home. I’m moving back to be near Zoëy and Leigh and all my friends and grandma and myself have some fabulous holiday adventures coming up this year. I realise how lucky I am compared to some others but I’d give it all up in a heartbeat if I could see you and hold just one more day.
I thought time was supposed to heal …..
It doesn’t it just makes me worry I’ll forget the sound of your voice, the smell of your hair and the feel of my arms around you.
I miss you so much my Órla porla.
Mummy loves you xxxxxx
It’s been 2 years 19days since my life changed forever. My little girl found freedom and was able to breathe easy without anymore pain and I found the courage because of her passing to find my own freedom and break free of an abusive marriage.
So what have I learned in these 2 years 19days?
I have felt pain like I never knew I could feel, heart wrenching gut twisting pain. I remember feeling pain each time I’d find out my husband had cheated on me and thinking nothing could hurt more than this, then my dad passed away after a short illness and I felt I couldn’t possibly hurt anymore but oh boy was I wrong. Two brief months later my precious child joined my dad and I was overcome with pain like I’ve never felt. I could think of nothing else other than wanting to join her in heaven, it was all encompassing and thoughts of being with her wouldn’t leave my head. If it wasn’t for my only other child and her finding out she was pregnant the day before Órla left us I know for a fact I would not be here today.
The pain has not eased and I know now it never will. Life without my youngest child will always be wrong. I think of her every minute of every day, she is my first and last thought and if I’m totally honest I’m looking forward to the day I meet her again. I have no fear of death anymore because it means I get to see my angel but I will not choose this for myself because I know I have another daughter who needs me and also a beautiful grandson. Only God will decide when I join my baby.
I have also learned to control my grief, I learned fairly quickly that people (especially other mums) don’t want to hear about the pain of losing a child it’s too raw and too terrifying for them to even attempt to understand. No matter how hard it is I’ve learnt to sit and listen and nod at their children’s achievements without bursting into tears even though my heart is breaking just a little bit more. Sometimes on low days I search out the people that I didn’t meet through Órla because no matter how close a friend they are it just hurts too much.
I’ve learned to value my own life and realise how precious life is. After spending 15 years with my first husband who then left unexpectedly and rebounding a mere 3 months later with my 2nd husband and wasting another 15 years on an abusive relationship I’ve finally found my own worth and realise I am complete on my own and don’t need a man by my side. I enjoy life to the full and think in the here and now.
I’ve learnt to take life as it comes, value the friendships I have and not waste time on negative people. I’ve become more selfish with my time. My time is precious and I’m not willing to waste anymore of it.
I’ve learned to take chances and opportunities with life, none of us know if our tomorrow comes.
All of this I attribute to the loss of my daughter, she made me realise how lucky I am to have to still have life and not to take it for granted.
I love and miss you bubba as much today as the day you left me 2 years 19 days ago. I will be forever greatful that you chose me as your mummy and graced me with those 9 precious years. You taught me so much in your short life and continue to teach me in your death.
Till we meet again xxx
Has it really been 2 years? Today I feel the pain as if it has just happened, I’m trying so hard to remind myself that it’s all part of Gods plan, that there are reasons why you had to go so soon. Life is so unfair.
I miss you more than any words can describe my órla porla. I so desperately need a cuddle from you right now but instead I’m going to close my eyes and try to remember your smell & your arms wrapped around me.
Silly mummy forgot to bring your special pink balloons with me to Santa ponsa and poor grandma has sore feet from walking around in this heat trying to find pink balloons. She could only find water balloons so we shall go to the beach tonight and see if they will fly. Not exactly what I had in mind but you know what your grandmas like.
Love you bubba❤️
I was kindly asked to write a piece for my friend Kate Hamilton at mourningcross.com I thought I’d share with all.
When my daughter Órla was diagnosed with a terminal illness aged 7 years my world was turned upside down. A very quick 24 months later and I knew I was spending the last summer with my precious baby.
During those last few weeks I thought a lot about her funeral, in fact I could think about nothing else, I needed to plan and organise and keep my mind busy.
I researched palliative care and what to expect. I choose songs that I wanted played during her funeral. I decided what she would wear & which favourite items would go in her coffin. It then came to the choice of coffin.
I had buried my father two months previous to Órla and looking at choices available I desperately needed a sign from him that this was ‘the one’ he would want but alas they all appeared cold, dark and melancholy. In the end we choose one that was named Stanley the name of the company my father had worked for most of his life.
When it came to Órla I wanted to be prepared, I wanted her final resting place to be quirky and funny just like my little girl. I wanted pretty & girly not dark woods and cold brass handles. I wanted something very personal so that her last send off was about me & her and no one else.
It seems that a lot of people are feeling the same way and the variety of different coffins available have increased immensely in the last few years. We have wicker, wool, bamboo to mention a few and then there’s the Eco coffins and cardboard variety.
It was whilst browsing I noticed a ‘decorate yourself’ cardboard coffin. I knew straight away that this was what I was looking for, it couldn’t get anymore personalised.
When the day came that Órla passed I was dreading the coffin arriving, I wasn’t ready for her to leave her bed, her room. The coffin was placed on wheels in my kitchen, suddenly the blank white box I choose seemed like a mammoth task that I had to undertake when I was at my lowest. When we were all at our lowest but it had to be done, so we began drawing, painting, sticking.
What I never imagined was how therapeutic and calming it was. All three of us put Órla’s favourite characters, pictures and sayings around the sides of the coffin. Our two cats meanwhile climbed on top and inside also wanting to be part of it. We played loud music that Órla loved, we reminisced about the past, we laughed, we cried, we drank and we even danced over the following 24 hours in our kitchen in between popping in to see Órla in her bed in the next room.
By the time her carriage was ready (we no longer saw it as a coffin) we were ready to say goodbye to our beautiful girl. All three of us felt we did her proud.
Órla had no big funeral, no traditional wake just very immediate family. She was a very special girl and never liked people around her so our work was not to be paraded about but then that was never our intention, we just wanted a more personal resting place but what we ended up with was an amazing experience that we shall never forget.