This feels like the perfect letter to start the week of letters to the other chair for Baby Loss Awareness Week. The loss of a baby is such a pivotal moment; a life before existed and a life after beckons. In the life before, there was so much excitement and anticipation. Fuss, nurturance and hope. And in one fell swoop, the red carpet to motherhood is whipped away and is used to shroud your existence.
In this beautiful communication to the world, Emma captures the essence of life before and life after.
Emma Jefferys is a coach living in Tunbridge Wells. Her first daughter Amelia was stillborn in 2012. She has since brought Amelia’s sister Ophelia home and is a proud mother to both her girls. As well as heading up bereavement support locally for SANDS, it was Amelia’s death that led to a change of career helping others. Something she is passionate about and a change that she will forever be grateful to her daughter for.
Emma can be found at here and on Instagram at @twtigress and @action_woman
Do you remember me? I hope so. I was the pregnant woman.
Do you remember? The one wearing her bump with pride and fizzing with excitement and anticipation about what was to come?
Do you remember? I had the names all picked out and the godparents too. I was brimming with hope and happiness for all that was to follow for us, for our family.
You were excited too. I remember. Smiling at my changing form, offering kind words of encouragement and making me feel so special just for carrying this little life.
Do you remember?
I only ask because since she was born it is like we are both invisible at times.
She was my firstborn girl, beautiful and perfect in every way. But silent. So very silent.
I delivered her into this world purposefully and with unconditional love, like every mother.
Unlike every mother I then had to make decisions about post mortems and funerals just hours after her birth.
Unlike every mother I had to walk the longest most painful walk out of the hospital, past the proud daddies carrying empty car seats to the ward, without my baby.
Unlike every mother I went home to an empty house and howled like an animal for what seemed like months, I feared I would drown in tears, that the pain would kill me.
Unlike every mother I wished a hundred times a night that I was being woken by a crying baby desperate for my milk.
And unlike every mother I buried my child.
But I’m a bit confused World because you see the day that she was born I did become a mother.
Just like every mother I am so proud of my child.
Just like every mother I think of her a thousand times a day.
Just like every mother I want to love and protect her always.
Just like every mother I want to talk about her and share her – the good and the bad.
Just like every mother I have milestones for her every year, though sadly they are ones she won’t be there for.
And yet World, sometimes I don’t think that you remember us at all. Or maybe you thought that my motherhood disappeared the day her heartbeat did?
I just wanted to let you know that we are still both here. Changed forever maybe and not together as we had planned but we are still here.
And just like every mother, nothing brings joy to my heart like hearing my daughter’s name said out loud, the life we created in her acknowledged and our unconditional love for her understood.
Because it turns out my greatest fear was not her dying, it is her not being remembered.