Friday, 27 December 2013

Arthur's Day

Tomorrow is Arthur's 2nd year anniversary.. I am thinking about him and his two weeks on this earth. I don't know how to spend his day. I feel the 13th the boys birthday is when I do something to remember both of them.. It's not like I won't be thinking of him all day tomorrow, I just don't have a ritual to do. Last year I was in middle of IVF. Eric was two cells old. I had so many emotions floating around. This year my little man is keeping me busy. 
I think tomorrow will be a day of quiet reflection in the midst of a normal day. 
My affirmation for tomorrow is forgiveness. Whilst I still struggle with this, I have become better and it is something I hope to work hard on in 2014. 
Arthur I love you. This time 2 years ago you were having a good night, I rang the hospital around 4am, they said you were quiet. You woke with an infection at 8am and you passed away at noon. It's like a dream, almost like it happened to someone else, but it happened to me and I am forever changed. 

Monday, 16 December 2013

Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday baby boys, if ye were alive ye would be two years old and our house would be manic. How I wish things could be different, how I long to hold both of you in my arms and shower you with kisses. I love you so much and you own my heart forever.

We celebrated your second birthday in a similar way as last year. We put our Christmas tree and put your decorations up first. Then we went to were we planted your trees. This year as we had Eric with us we couldn't climb the mountain but instead we went on a walk around the area. We stopped for hot ports and soaked up the Christmas atmosphere. We then went for a meal and had birthday cake. When we arrived home we switched on the Christmas lights. It was a perfect day to celebrate your little life times.

I always find the two weeks between Arthur's birth and death difficult. Lots of memories come flooding back. Last night I had some night terrors were I dreamt of dead babies. its been a long time since I had dreams like this. I was a little shaken when I awoke. Then I fear something will happen to Eric, but I guess that fear is always going to be there for any mother but is just a bit more pronounced as I now know how precious life is.

I participated in a workshop last night and made a beautiful Christmas table display for Luke and Arthur. The workshop is run by a local charity for baby loss. It the was lovely to make something for the twins and now they will be included and will be there in our minds on Christmas day.

I made up a Christmas package for the nurses in neonatal, that cared for Arthur. They have been wonderful and sent a lovely card and photo frame for Eric when he was born. I will always remember their kindness. I also sponsored a memory box to be donated to the hospital for another baby's parents.

I have met some wonderful people in the past two years, people that I would have never met if my twins were not born. I am grateful every day that even though they could not stay with me that they were and are a part of our lives. I love them to the moon and back..xx

Monday, 9 December 2013

Where has the time gone???

Its been a long time since I posted here. I think I was heading into hospital for observation last time I was on.I stopped posting as I had so much anxiety around my pregnancy I just couldn't face writing about anything. As I approach the twins second anniversary I felt compelled to visit this space so I can reflect on all that has happened over the past year.

Our son Eric was born on the 4th September 2013. He is perfect and our lives have changed forever. I love him more than anything and I am so thankful that he is here with us. There is a feeling of sadness too as now I can physically feel what I have missed out on with my twins. We are a family of 5, but only 3 of us here on this earth and I still miss the twins with all my heart. 

The last few months have been a whirl wind and I have no time to think. This is a good thing as my time is full of Eric. The twins anniversary is a few days away and as I reflect I can honestly say that I have thought about them every day over the past two years. They are with me all the time. 

I remember writing here last year and I was so lost. I didnt know if I would ever have children. I felt so empty and tired and angry. Throughout my pregnancy I stayed quiet resting and avoided most social events. I didn't want to face people and I was afraid something bad would happen. Then when Eric arrived everything changed. People came out of the woodwork to congratulate us, some whom I had spent a year upset about. I decided to forgive and to move forward as I do not want any negativity to surround Eric. I have been busy meeting people and participating in life again. Some times I feel like my old self again and I'm enjoying it. The dark place that I was in, is not so dark anymore. The birth of Eric has healed me, he is helping me to live again. 

Eric would not exist if our twins had lived, this is a hard concept to understand. They have given me Eric and for that I am truly thankful. People told me in the beginning of this grief journey that time would help the healing process. I believe now that this is true but what has helped more than anything is having my rainbow baby. I don't know if I would be as happy now if Eric was not with me. For me being childless was a huge emotional turmoil. I'm glad I did not give up on my dream as now I can experience the miracle of a little life and I feel for the first time that we are a family.

A week before Eric was born our 17 year old dog 'Mika' passed away. Mika was the closest we ever got to having a family.  Mika helped me hugely after the twins death as she got me out of bed and out walking. We had many scares over the past two years and were told several times that she didn't have long to live. But she lived and stayed with us up until the end. On her last week she stopped eating, its as if she knew it was her time to go and she gave us all she could. It was a hard week but then everything was accelerated and we then welcomed our new arrival and a new chapter in our lives.

I have been doing really well but this week I am finding it hard, lots of those memories of two years ago are flooding back. The what ifs and the what could have been.  I know the next 2 weeks I will be reliving a lot of memories but I will also be making new ones as it will be a first Christmas for Eric. I have decided that I will put up our Christmas tree on the 13th the day the twins were born and this will always be  a tradition in our home. I got some new decorations for the twins to put on our tree. I am hoping this will be a good and peaceful Christmas. On the 28th of December will be the anniversary of Arthur's passing and the 29th will mark the day that Eric was implanted on our last IVF treatment. What a difference a year can make..
Merry Christmas!!!!!

Sunday, 19 May 2013


Hope according to Wikipedia, is the state which promotes the belief in a good outcome related to events and circumstances in one's life. Despair is often regarded as the opposite of hope. I know what despair feels like, I think anyone who has lost someone they love has felt despair. Despair is a dark lonely place where hope does not exist, in fact I don't think anything exists only darkness, heaviness and confusion.

I read yesterday that the Krim family, who lost their two children Lulu and Leo to tragic circumstances late last year, are expecting again. The family release a statement to say they have hope for the future. It really is   inspirational that a family that have endured such pain in such awful circumstances are feeling the hope in a new pregnancy and are looking to a brighter future.

I personally am still finding it difficult to be hopeful, I am still not convinced that I will have a good outcome, however I am not in despair either. So what am I thinking? I would like to be hopeful and at times I guess it is there. I allow myself to imagine me holding my baby and bringing it home and at last having a family. This week however  any glimmer of hope has taken a backseat, to an overwhelming feeling of nervousness. I feel like I have a big exam ahead of me and I'm waiting to sit it in 2 weeks time. My stomach is in knots in anticipation of reaching 24.5 weeks, the age of my twins when they were born. I have no control over these feelings, my head can say its irrational to be nervous this is a different pregnancy but my body has a mind of its own.

Then I think when and if I pass the 24.5 week mark, will I then have hope, and I fear the overwhelming answer is probably not.Why? Because, I know too much of what can go wrong at different stages of a pregnancy. I have met and read too many stories. However when you read of another family like the Krims who have and continue to struggle and still have a glimmer of hope, it makes me think maybe things will turn out OK, maybe I just need to believe it can happen to me.

Monday, 6 May 2013

21 week

Once again its been a while since I have posted. I'm almost afraid to post as I'm afraid something will happen and I may loose this baby, whom I love so much already. It is a difficult journey, pregnancy after loss as each milestone I am reminded of what I lost and what I could loose.

I am 21 weeks on Wednesday and at this point in my pregnancy with only 3.5 weeks to go to the same date that I lost the twins. Theses days are hard as I countdown to this crucial date. I had a scare last week where I had some bleeding. I had a slow motion reaction when I saw the blood, I wanted to ignore it as I couldn't face going through another loss.  All I kept thinking was here I go again, I didn't contact the hospital for hours, instead I left work and went home and lay on the couch trying to avoid the whole situation.When I did contact my consultant she wanted me straight in. I was admitted to hospital for 4 nights of observation and thankfully there were no changes in my cervix and the bleeding stopped. All my test results came back clear and I had no infection so it looks like the bleeding was the result of my stitch stretching. In hospital I ended up in the same ward that I was in for the 5 days before the twins were born, I met some of the same nurses. It was difficult as I was scared and being in the same place surrounded by the same people was tremendously hard. But the positive is this baby is still safe inside me, with no notion of my worries.

I am been very well looked after by my consultant, and for the next seven weeks, I will be seen weekly for scans. I just wish I had met this consultant before and maybe the twins may still be here. I have discussed getting my steroid shot for the baby's lungs at week 24 and I will get a booster shot at week week 28.

I feel like the time is going slowly and that it is also going quickly, I cannot believe I have made it this far but I also know I have a long way to go. I feel the baby moving all the time, which I love. I had just started feeling the twins move when I lost them, so now I am enjoying this amazing feeling of life.

I haven't really told anyone that I am pregnant, just close family and a few friends and those I work with. I am really starting to show now so it will get more difficult to hide. I don't know why I want to hide it, but I do. I want to keep it to myself as long as I can. Currently I am on activity rest, I only go between work and home so I am able to keep a low profile. As I never really resumed my social life after loosing the twins, people are none the wiser.

Yesterday was international bereaved mothers day, I didn't realize till late in the evening. I lit a candle for my boys to mark the occasion. Also my birthday was a few weeks ago and I got two beautiful framed pictures of baby Luke. This was important as I had two pictures of baby Arthur, which I keep on our mantle piece and beside my bed but I had no picture of Luke. The pictures I have of Arthur are of us with him in neonatal when Santa came to visit.  So now I am happy as I have a picture of both my boys.

My next goal for this pregnancy is to reach  24.5 weeks followed by 28 weeks and if I make it that far I guess I will have a whole new set of worries!

Sunday, 17 March 2013

Second trimester

I reached an important milestone, I am now officially entering my second trimester. I am 13.5 days today. I have a bump that seemed to appear overnight. I love having a bump, and I love being pregnant again, but it is different this time. I have lost my innocence, I no longer feel safe, I am cautious. Don't get me wrong I do get excited at times, dreaming of our future, but I have to stop myself as then I think of all the things that can go wrong. I have read so many other stories of baby loss, I now know of so many things that can go wrong, it is scary.

I had my cerclage put in last week, as a preventative measure to try to hold onto this pregnancy. The procedure went well, with only a small bit of discomfort the following day. It got me thinking of all the procedures I have had to get to this point. I had a laparoscopy, a hysterscopy, a DNC, a manual removal of my placenta and a cerclage. I also had two canceled IVF's, four fresh IVF's and two frozen cycles. Each of my failed IVF cycles were losses to me as you build up so much hope and you have  your little embryos put back and then nothing. It's devastating to go through a failed IVF, but I think the two frozen cycles after I lost the twins were the most painful. I hate to think where I would be now if our present cycle had failed, would I have found the strength to go on?

This pregnancy is not like my pregnancy with the twins, and I am a little grateful for that. My pregnancy with the twins was easy, I was never sick, I could eat everything, I exercised a lot, I had energy. This pregnancy I have been sick everyday from six weeks, however I am grateful as I feel pregnant, I cannot eat red meat or any meat for that matter, I am doing minimum exercise and I haven't had a lot of energy. I am resting a lot and taking time for myself.

I am fortunate as my consultant has scanned me every week since I was six weeks, so I have been closely following my baby's growth. Now that I have reached the end of my first trimester, I feel like I can breathe before I head to the 18-24 week period. I am dreading this time. I will start progesterone injections at week 16 and the baby will have the injection for their lungs at 24 weeks. Please god let me make it to there and beyond.

We have told a few people but don't plan to tell many, I can't seem to say it out loud for fear of jinxing it. I would love if nobody knew till I walked out of the hospital. I dream of walking out the front door of the hospital with a car seat instead of the back door with a coffin. I remember, when the twins died, how I was so envious of all the moms with their babies and their car seats, at the time I truly couldn't believe what had happened to us.

 We recently received a wedding invitation to attend a local wedding. The couple getting married are more friendly with  L than me, and I haven't seen or heard from them since our twins died. I would probably know  about ninety percent of the people who will attend this event, none of whom I have seen or heard from since our loss. L really wants me to attend but I don't want to go. There are several reasons, my pregnancy is one as I would be 18 weeks and would be showing, I do not want to announce my pregnancy to everyone at a wedding. I also have anxiety thinking about seeing such a big group of people that I have not seen since before I lost the twins. I also feel a little mad as not one person from this group contacted me or sent a card, I know I cut myself off for a while but a simple text would have sufficed. I  know that I have high expectations of people and I should know better. I have been beating myself up about this but I really don't want to attend, I would love somebody to tell me its OK, if you don't feel up to it, then don't. I just want to stay a little bit longer in my little pregnancy bubble, before facing the big bad world.

I do feel Luke and Arthur close to me everyday, I talk to them all the time. It amazes me that I knew them for such a short time yet they are present in such a large part of my life. There is not one day since I lost them or should I say since I conceived them that I have not thought of them. They have been in my life now for 20 months since conception and I love the idea that whilst they are not physically here they are with me mentally and I think they always will be with me no matter what happens. xx

Sunday, 24 February 2013


Its been a tough week. My uncle died at 59 years old. Its was so sad to see such a good man taken at the prime of his life. It really makes me question why take him, he didn't drink or smoke, he was a hard worker, good to his parents and family and he is gone. Yet you see others  and they abuse their bodies and nothing. Don't get me wrong I don't want anything to happen to anybody but life just seems so unfair.

It just seems no matter how well you look after yourself or in my case how well I tried to care for my babies, things just happen for no reason, just random acts, happening all the time. Life is hard, loss is hard, grief is hard.

At my uncles funeral, I met many family members whom I have not seen since loosing the twins. It was difficult as I definitely hold a lot of anger towards people whom I felt did not acknowledge my loss. When I lost the twins we didn't have a funeral, we cremated the boys and only had a few very close family members attend. On attending my uncles funeral, I could see that people were afforded the opportunity to offer their condolences. People knew how to behave and what was expected of them. When you loose a baby, it is not the same, people do not know what to do or what is expected of them. It is just so awful.

For the first time in over a year, I was able to face people and consider that what happened to Luke and I was really awful and nobody knew what to do. At the funeral some family members asked how I was,  I knew they were asking about the twins and I was able to say I was doing OK. Others said nothing but it didn't hurt me as it has in the past. What was important for me was that I faced everybody, I spoke to everybody, I didn't feel like running and hiding. I have moved forward, and it is important for me to acknowledge that.

Loosing a family member is incredibly sad. Loosing your children is horrendous. Over the course of the week, there were many conversations about my uncles life. It made me really sad to think that nobody can ever speak about my boys like that as nobody knew them, which I guess makes it hard for people to recognize  the extinct of our loss. This week I have become a bit more tolerant, in understanding others. However there are still people that I expected more from and those relationships are changed forever, but I am OK with that. I am not as angry.

Sunday, 3 February 2013



Its been a while since I have wrote anything. I stopped in October after I participated in capture your grief, I was exhausted after posting daily and needed time away from here. November was a quiet month, where I was preparing for my babies first anniversary and starting a new IVF cycle.

December was a hard month, I finished working on the 12th of December the day before my boys anniversary and didn't return till January 7th. Luke and Arthur's birthday and anniversary was a good day, much better than I had anticipated. I got up that morning and Luke & Arthur's daddy (also named Luke) had got me the most beautiful necklace  with the boys names engraved in Ogham writing. Ogham  is the earliest form of writing in Ireland, it dates to around 4th century A.D,it was the most wonderful gift, it made me cry. Then we headed out for the day, I had planned that we go to the national park where I planted the trees in memory of our boys. The family plot where the trees are planted is above a waterfall on the road to Torc mountain which is 500m high. We climbed the mountain, which is not too high but the weather conditions on the day were really hard, it was windy and raining. At various points along the route we contemplated turning back, but the mountain became symbolic of our year and how tough it has been and I needed to reach the top.  We did and it felt good and as we descended the weather improved. After we went for dinner and a movie and when we arrived home, my sister had left the most beautiful card and two white flowers and a gift voucher for another piece of jewelry. I was so grateful to have had such a nice day in memory of our boys. 

A couple of days later I  visited the hospital where the boys were born and I dropped off birthday queen cakes for the nurses who looked after me and those who looked after Arthur in neonatal. I met with the counseling midwife as I did not feel strong enough to face the wards, but I got a fabulous card from neonatal, which meant a lot to me.

In the midst of all  of this our dog turned 16, the same dog that was given 3 months to live last January.  Mika (our dog) developed a bad toe infection and once more we were told she may not make it. I prayed she wouldn't die around the boys anniversary or  over the Christmas period. Mika had a stroke because of the antibiotics she was on and we had to make the decision to cut her toe off, but we were told there was a strong possibility that she would die on the operating table. Mika survived and is happy and healthy, but missing one toe, she is a real survivor. 

I had a strong urge  that I did not want to celebrate Christmas so I planned to do my IVF over the Christmas holidays. I toyed with the idea of  putting up a Christmas tree, but I attended a workshop and I made some Christmas decorations for the boys so I decided to put up some decorations. I'm glad I did. We flew to Kiev on Christmas eve and arrived to -15 weather. In Kiev they do not celebrate Christmas until the 7th of January, so whilst the city was decorated, we didn't have the pressure of Christmas day. On Christmas day we walked around the Christmas markets and went for a nice meal and that was it Christmas over. On the 26th I had egg retrieval and on the 27th Luke flew home as we were still unsure if Mika (dog) was ok and we didn't feel comfortable leaving her. 

When I had my egg retrieved, I got a huge shock, I was told my lining was only 7mm, which is not good. I didn't understand how this could happen as the previous month I had an 8mm lining. When I got pregnant with the twins my lining was 8mm. We collected 11 eggs and 8 fertilized. The clinic said I had to decide whether I was to put back 2 or 3. I was advised by my consultant to put back 2 as the risks associated with a twin pregnancy. I spent my three days in Kiev a nervous wreck, it just all seemed doomed to fail. 

On the day of transfer, the clinic felt as my lining was so poor they would recommend I transfer 3 so I did. I remained in Kiev for another day after the transfer and flew home on New Year eve, safely missing another celebration. Now I had the dreaded two week wait to endure. To be honest I didn't feel very hopefully and I think I began grieving this IVF at the beginning of the two week wait. I returned to work on the 7th but I was overwhelming sad. We discussed our options at length and tried to decide what next. 

My test date was on the 14th January, I couldn't sleep that night and I woke at 5am, I decided to go for it. I peed and there was nothing so I left it and went to the kitchen for some water, I returned and I saw the faintest line, so faint you had to hold it up to the light. Now I was confused, after some time the line got a little stronger. I spent the next 24 hours on Google and I decided this was an evaporation line. I tested again the following morning and a even fainter line came up if that was possible, but the line appeared within the 3 minutes so now I deduced that it was a chemical pregnancy as the line had got fainter. Another 24 hours of Google agony. Finally on Monday morning I went to the GP and I just started crying, poor doctor didn't even know why I was there, eventually she did my bloods and I had a bhcg of 125, which is really low for 16 days post 3 day transfer. I went back again for a second beta on Wednesday and it had doubled to 294, which was positive but still low. I went back for 2 more beta and it more than doubled each time so I booked a scan. 

My first scan I was 4 weeks past egg collection which translates to 6 weeks pregnant, and I had one sac but little else, we could see a tiny yolk, but it wasn't clear.As there was no heartbeat I was distraught, but my consultant said it is still too early. I went back for a second scan at 7 weeks, it was the most nerve wracking experience, but there it was a heart beat. So I guess I'm officially pregnant. I don't even want to write it as I am acutely aware it can be taken from me in an instant. I'm afraid. My consultant said I was measuring at 6 weeks instead of 7, but since I did IVF, I know my dates, so this is a worry. I know I had a late implanter, which would explain my low beta, but I also know it is not possible to implant a week late. 

I remember after my first scan, I said to my consultant, that all my energy was put into getting pregnant now the fear that I was and what is ahead is overwhelming. I wish I was innocent and I had no idea what it is like to loose children. I am hoping and praying this little bean will stay with me. I am convinced it is a girl, I have even drifted off to looking at girls names, but I have to catch myself, I am nowhere near a place where I can dream of my take home baby. It is difficult to stay in the present when I dream of what the future would be like with my rainbow baby. 

My consultant has agreed to scan me weekly until 12 weeks, if I am lucky enough to make it there. I think she understands how nervous I am. I scan again next Wednesday, which is all I can think about. I am just praying this bean is a fighter and grows and grows.