Right where I am 2013, three years ten months and ten days

5:37 pm

I'm participating again this year in Angie's Right Where I Am Project. I'll be honest, there is a part of me that thinks perhaps I should skip it this year, but there is a larger part of me that values the opportunity to talk about Florence and how things are now, almost four years out from her birth and death.
I wrote in those early days of how I thought over time this blog would start to become more about sewing again, and less about grief. I can see that is starting to happen as I predicted.
I do feel that I am now beginning to finally awaken from the fog of grief. I'm looking around me and realising how much I've missed, and it's scary to think of how much catching up I have to do.
I don't read as many babyloss blogs as I used to, I can feel I'm slipping away from that need to connect, although the women I met in those early days will always be my sisters in loss, and their babies always remembered and loved. 
Florence is integrated into our family life securely. I know some people have forgotten, I know some people prefer to forget, but it doesn't matter anymore because she has a firm position in the lives of those that matter.

 Hawthorne

There are still times when the intense longing for Florence to be here is more than I can stand. Times when I'm overwhelmed with grief and despair and guilt. Often a tiny insignificant moment can send me reeling, knocking me sideways and taking my breath away.
Florence occupies the spaces between each and every breath I take, she is there between the full stop and the beginning of the next word.
I find it hard to imagine her at almost four years old. I could imagine her as a baby and then to my surprise a toddler. I used to be able to feel her by my side, but lately I can't. I watch her shadow babies, and I marvel at their bigness, and I just can't see Florence that way. I know this might change.
There is no end to this grief. I know it will change as my life continues. I know I can and will still be surprised by it.
Mostly though I know how much I love and miss my little girl, and everything she'll never be. I know that when my big girls are dancing on the back seat of the car that my heart will swell with joy and simultaneously break into a million pieces for the little girl who will never dance along to the radio with her sisters, the little girl who will never splash in the sea at our favourite "crumpet" beach....

Florence Violet, you are loved, so loved. xxxxXx

Previous years posts: 2012 and 2011 and also Vlog of 2011's post



Don't be shy, say hello!

32 comments

  1. Oh the swells of joy and sorrow are ever present.

    Now, but especially in the early months of my grief, it was so important to me to hear about others who had integrated all of their children into their families. Securely, like your Florence. xoxo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Mama Bear, much love to you and your Bear. x

      Delete
  2. Florence will never be forgotten here Xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know, and I love you for that. x

      Delete
  3. Oh Jeanette, what you have written on your whole blog is so brave, because sometimes the compassion one would expect from others just isn't present. I am glad you chose to write again this year, because when another parent stumbles upon Florence's life story they will do what you did with other blogs and devour every word. I imagine that as hard as it is they will take comfort in knowing the weight of the grief will alter, if not the actual grief itself.
    Much Love To You, my amazing friend.
    V
    xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Val. I hope you are right. I have in my darker moments considered moving Florence away from here, but she is so much a part of me it would feel wrong to do it. x

      Delete
  4. This has much than I can understand my friend. Loving you and loving Florence always.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, you and Lyra are tucked up safe in my heart. x

      Delete
  5. She isn't forgotten here neither, her birthdate is just before Em and Kath's, so I always have a timely reminder to hold you in thought and prayer on that date.

    As a mum who has only miscarried, i cannot ever truly appreciate your heartbreak, but i believe your being involved in this project, will offer hope to those on a seemingless hopeless situation. Your write with such honesty and beauty and to do so is a real gift.

    Love to.you

    San xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. San, you have always been a calm presence here, and I love you for that. x

      Delete
  6. Never forgotten, even almost four years later I feel much the same. I was watching Finn and Vivi eat popsicles out in the garden yesterday and the sun was just behind them and created this lovely halo that made me just ache with love and gratitude and grief, I imagined Henry sitting there too, my three children, together at last. Imagining him eating a popsicles with his brother and sister seemed like the most impossible dream that could ever be, but what I most wanted out of this entire universe, and it felt so unfair that I would never have it.

    We love her J., Florence is always in our hearts here too. XO

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mindy, I think of you and Henry so often. Whenever we see Ravens I say "Hello Henry". He is loved and remembered here always. x

      Delete
  7. Oh, I'm glad you decided to write even though you weren't sure you should. "There is no end to this grief. I know it will change as my life continues. I know I can and will still be surprised by it." Yes, just when you think you have it figured out or under control, something changes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sara, yes, always changing, always present. x

      Delete
  8. As I am learning, grief is a terrible thing - it might change with time, but I don't think it will ever go away. x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you are right. x

      Delete
  9. Florence is remembered here too, she is just a few months older than my E so with a 3 year old pottering about here I do think of her.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, lovely to hear from you again too. x

      Delete
  10. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  11. "everything she'll never be" Oh I get that. So many do, I'm sure. Thanks for posting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We grieve a life time of possibilities alonside the loss of our babies. x

      Delete
  12. "Florence occupies the spaces between each and every breath I take, she is there between the full stop and the beginning of the next word."

    So beautifully written. Thinking of you.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Beautiful words, I'm glad you wrote again. XXXX

    ReplyDelete
  14. I came to look at crochet and have ended up reading through your blog and your beautiful words about love, greif, hope, despair. Thankyou

    ReplyDelete
  15. I am so glad you did decide to write. For me, being just 5 and a bit months on from the birth of my 3rd child, and then his death, it's good to have that reinforcement that he will indeed always be part of me, through everything. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  16. "I'm looking around me and realising how much I've missed, and it's scary to think of how much catching up I have to do. "

    This really stuck with me as I think I am in a similar place and I worry that in many ways I won't be able to catch up.

    ReplyDelete
  17. My heart stuck on the lines that Theory and Practices has already mentioned.

    'Florence occupies the spaces between each and every breath I take, she is there between the full stop and the beginning of the next word.'

    This describes it perfectly. I think our daughters are always so close to us, just a finger's breadth away, so close, in the pauses and the gaps. Perhaps they fade in and out of focus with the years, I know that I often think of G has a young teenager although she would, obviously, be only five years old had she lived. Not the thirteen or four teen I imagine her as.

    It has taken me a long time to wake up, sometimes I think I'm only just stirring now. But I recognise that feeling of . . . panic almost! That feeling that I must somehow catch up and I don't really know where to start!

    Ah and I just wish that she were there, dancing and splashing, with her sisters. Remembering your beautiful Florence Violet x

    ReplyDelete
  18. Thank you for writing and sharing this. I love how you and your family have made Florence, and remembering her, part of your lives. I love how she is there with you even as you miss her.

    Sending love to you and your family.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I can relate to your longing so well. Xo

    ReplyDelete
  20. I'm so glad you took part this year, my beautiful friend. I'm sorry I've been so quiet on your blog of late, both on Florence and sewing posts. I wish I could get to this corner of the internet more often, but something about the path of healing has, at least for the time being, led me away from babyloss blogs. But your Florence will always be in my heart, no matter what.
    xo

    ReplyDelete
  21. Totally agree with Sally. I love to read about your sweet Florence. I read so many blogs but rarely have the wisdom to leave in the comments--it's always the same thing to say.

    But either way, I can relate to so much of this. Love to you.
    xo

    ReplyDelete
  22. Oh what a beautiful post Jeanette. SO sorry I am delayed in reading and commenting. About a year behind you, I too am feeling changes in who I am and where my days and writing are headed. You have said it so well here- we hold them in our hearts every moment of every day, regardless of what time has to done in the minds of others. If it means anything, I find that while I too no longer seek out baby loss blogs, the girls I met on my journey are firmly a part of my life- and always will be. Celebrating Florence's life with you, and looking forward to reading what comes next in your life here on this side of the universe. xx

    ReplyDelete

Hi, I love to hear from readers, hate to think I'm talking to myself here, so don't be shy say hello!