This morning Archie asked me what I thought Betty would look like. Out of the blue I didn’t see it coming. *sob* I said she would probably look like Vinnie…. what else could I say? I couldn’t tell him I know? As I look at Vinnie I can see Betty more than I ever have done before. It makes me feel sad, not because I’m looking at him but because I am once again reminded of how it feels to have lost her and still be without her. Over a year has past now – so much has happened, we have Vinnie but It’s bitter sweet. The question from Archie makes me wonder what he thinks about, should we show him a picture of Betty? Hubby thinks no for now – I’m unsure. This Christmas we think of our baby girl, as we watch our boys get to know each other and learn to love one another. The festive period although wonderful when you have little ones is also a hard time for those alone, going through tough times or those who are without their loved ones be it over seas or in heaven. Although this year has had more highs than lows for us, it has still been hard, it has been emotional but it has been mainly happy. Christmas provides a time for us all to enjoy but also think and reflect on what we may not have. We are doing all we can to make the Christmas holidays as special as we can for our lovely Archie, he’s been so patient these last few months, loving and caring and just his very beautiful self. I need to remember that he lost Betty too – but he doesn’t show sadness like we do he just always reminds me whenever I say ‘the 4 of us’ that there are ‘5 of us’ and whatever we do Betty is there too! He is just so amazing I don’t think I could of asked for him to have accepted things as well as he has. He kept writing her name in our Christmas cards – I don’t think we should be putting her name in our cards etc tho but he obviously just thinks of her as one of the family (which she is) so in his mind her name should be there. But it just doesn’t feel right to do it. I feel so awful to say that.
I think the hardest thing, I’m sure I have spoken of this before is ‘acceptance’ accepting what has happened to you because it has happened there is no changing it. It is done there is no second chance. Although maybe Vinnie is our second chance, twice this week I have been asked ‘is he your first?’ I always answer no he’s my second. As soon as I say it I think of her, why don’t I just say no he’s my third? But then I have to get into the conversation of what happened to Betty and let’s face it who wants to know that on a fleeting meeting with a stranger. It’s not that I don’t want people to know about her but sometimes it’s just easier to not talk about her to people I don’t know.
If I think for too long I then come onto the matter of if Betty hadn’t of died we wouldn’t have Vinnie, so so hard to comprehend. But, it’s the truth if she was here I really don’t think we would of been thinking of another baby so soon after. Then the guilt comes back. Last night after Archie had gone to bed myself and Scott had a toast over a drink we both looked at our baby boy and cried tears of joy and sadness, joy that we are blessed to watch him grow, hold him in our arms, sadness that Betty never got that chance, we miss her. We miss her so very much. These last few weeks, we have had colds, coughs, ear aches, mastitis (again), injections, sickness bugs and a growth spurt. All things that make having more than one child even trickier especially when one is a new baby. When Archie had horrendous ear ache I was torn as all he wanted was me to cuddle him but Vinnie needed feeding and I just couldn’t do both, Archie had to wait as he often does at the moment because Vinnie’s Needs are usually more urgent he is the baby! I felt so awful! Scott and I tag teamed and tried to do the best we could, but it still didn’t seem enough. I hate to say it but I think I will be glad to see the back of winter! Ha ha! I have told you before I am never satisfied! I am looking forward to welcoming spring, even if it does mean my baby will be older and no longer a newborn, my big baby will be even older again and nearly ending his second year at school and my middle baby who remains among the stars will simply be becoming even more of a memory, I have to embrace all that life throws our way. Each stage we go through now, each sickness, each tough day will never compare to the utter devastation of the day we lost you Betty, I know that as we go about our daily lives no challenge will ever (god forbid) be as bad as that day when you left us. I know that I am able to take on the world, I survived loosing you even though at the time I didn’t know how I would get through the first week let alone the first year.
As your brothers grow and become the best of friends know that I will always look at them and think of you in the middle where you should be, for you will always be our little Betty Dora, no one can replace or be you. Vinnie is just the first step in a long road to patching up our broken hearts. They can only ever be patched, never fixed for you can never fix the heart of someone who has lost something so precious. But patching will do us just fine, we can deal with that.
As we enjoyed our Christmas Day just the four of us, Vinnie waking to feed then falling back to sleep – Archie singing to himself in between watching Harry Potter and opening and playing with all his new toys (as I watched in fear that he might cut his fingers off as he insists he can deal with all the obscene packaging using scissors) we thought of you, when we sat to the table we looked to the space where you should be and we thought of you for there has never nor will there ever be a day when we don’t think of you my darling. We already smile, we laugh, we live, but we will never move on completely without you. But we will be the best that we can be until we are with you again. And your brothers will always know about their Betty Dora. 5 is the best number. And you were number 4.