So, how was your Halloween? (another probably pointless ramble)

8:54 am

Winter celebrations from Halloween through till Christmas just make me anxious. I'm not certain why. I want to celebrate them *my* way,but then I'm uncertain how that should be. I'm not a Pagan, or a Christian, so maybe I shouldn't be celebrating at all.
I've tried over the past few years to celebrate the winter festivals as just that,but somehow it still doesn't feel right.
Guy Fawkes is coming up this week.Now that should be a simple festival to enjoy,but I can't help thinking that despite Guy Fawkes being a terrorist, did he really deserve to be put to death? And in such a grotesque way? and should we be celebrating that?
Maybe it's being a grumpy old English woman,or maybe it's just my usual way of over thinking everything.
Actually I wonder if it isn't just embarrassment.
I've realised lately just how embarrassed I am by my grief. I already knew I felt shame and embarrassment for not being able to bring Florence into the world whole and healthy,but I've only just realised how embarrassed I am by my own grief.
Most days I try to hide it behind make up and busyness, but that's survival, that's the only way to get through each day.
Here though, on my blog, you'd think I could shed that embarrassment. After all this is *my* blog, I can write anything I want to. My grief is mine alone,(Just as Woody's is his alone.) no one else feels the way I do. No one can tell me I'm wrong, or that I should be anything. So why am I so cautious?
The truth is,this blog barely scratches the surface of the pain and sorrow in my soul. Jess described it perfectly in a recent post on her blog
Sometimes I want to bare my pain and scare the crap out of everyone, to give them the tiniest glimpse of the horror of losing a child,but that would be embarrassing wouldn't it, so I put on my make up, and paste on a smile and I edit my thoughts for my blog to protect the friends and family I love.
I am ok,I'm not falling apart,I'm coping, and I'll keep on coping, but this story doesn't have a happy ending, I'm not going to reach the end of a grief journey and be all better. I'm going to have a hole in my heart forever, I'll pull in the edges and try to fix it,but the stitches wont quite ever be strong enough.
Some days I might just spill some of the contents into cyber space, and other days the stitches will hold up a little better, and well dear readers, I'm sorry, and I'll be blushing, but that's just the way it's gonna be.

Florence's pumpkin

Don't be shy, say hello!


  1. HUGS - all I can say is be kind to yourself.
    I dont like Halloween or Guy Fawkes - so we wont be doing anything for GF ... had to do the dressing up last night but hope GF will just slip by. ((()))) Vanessa

  2. Keep sharing when you can, no need to feel embarassed. I cannot even for one moment imagine your daily pain. All I can do is check in to see how you are doing, send messages of support and light a candle and say a prayer.
    With big HUGS
    San xx

  3. I understand your feelings of embarressment, when my Dad died I felt that I would somehow be showing myself up if I broke down or was honest about how I was feeling in front of people. I only felt properly comfortable around people who had lost a loved one, even more so if it had been a parent. Perhaps it is a British stiff upper lip thing, but there was also an element of feeling quite protectively private about the intensity of my grief.

    Thinking of you as always

    Amber x

  4. I hear you. I hate myself for feeling so embarrassed by Iris' death. I wish I could be more graceful in my grief as much as I wish I could show everyone just how painful it all is.

    I'll be here reading whatever you write in whatever way you choose.


  5. We grieve so badly in the West. Stiff upper lips and restraint simply put a plaster over wounds. I have always felt that Jewish shiva or other culutral rituals that involve a shared, open expression of grief and loss more helpful. You should be embarrassed about your grief it should be acknowledged and accepted, but we just aren't in a culture where that's possible.

  6. It's not pointless rambling Jeanette. I'm finding your blog so heartbreaking to read, and I've wanted to comment but not had anything to say but I'm so sorry over and over ;(

    Can I come and see you, bring a hug and maybe some other stuff?

    S xx

  7. Jeanette, I don't know if you remember me, but I lost my first daughter last year.

    I've been reading your blog since Florence's death and so much of it reminds me of where I was this time last year (and where I still am a lot of the time too)

    I don't blog or anything but I would like to talk to you if you would like (though I understand if you don't want to) My email is negrulesall at hotmail dot com.

    Naomi (monkey85 from BW)

  8. it's so harsh that the way we live makes us embarrassed to express our true feelings....hugs to you, Jeanette. Thinking of you every day xxxx

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  10. I think grieving is a very hard thing to do, full stop. It confuses the hell out of me and sometimes I think it should be all mine and then at other times I feel like screaming about it.
    I think writing about it helps and I hope its helping you too.

    Thinking of you.


  11. ah we're so bad at emotion full stop. I sometimes watch my 2 year old writhing around on the floor using his whole body to express his frustrations and I envy him. He also expresses his joy in a way I'm jealous of too. All my emotions have to fit in with the way I want others to see me. In Jewish tradition you tear your clothes when someone dies and it seems such a good way of expressing it.

    It's all so fresh still Jeanette. The wound is still raw with jagged edges. Be kind to yourself and grieve in your own way.


  12. Big hugs Jeanette. You are incredibly brave sharing, I know you will be comforting so many others who come across this blog. I remember when the daughter of a family I knew died. There was wailing for hours. Together, her female relatives wailed and wailed. I've always remembered that.
    Again, all I can do is offer support. It breaks my heart to see you going through this. You've been an absolute inspiration since I first met you. I just want to squeeze you. I will never be the person who crosses the road rather than face you and your pain. It is part of you now isn't it?

    As for Halloween, I love the run up to rather than the actual festival! Never got round to carving the pumpkin. But did make pumpkin muffins..yum. I must admit that I just adore fireworks when it comes to Guy Fawkes.
    Apologies for the essay as usual. xxx

  13. I always feel uneasy about Guy Fawkes too. Poor soul.

    I feel embarrassed too and then I compound it all by hating myself for feeling embarrassed.

    I can't sum it up better than Jess. I couldn't even begin to try. And I know that there will always be a hole in your heart, no matter how strong your stitches are. A hole where your precious Florence should be.

    xoxo from one grumpy old English woman to another.

  14. No words. Just (((hugs))).


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