Friday, February 27, 2009


Yesterday I went to visit a tiny, baby girl. I waited until she was home as I am not ready to visit people in the same maternity hospital in which Alice was born and died.

She is perfect and small and perfect.

She slept in my arms for hours.

I cried a little.

I was happy for her family but I felt empty and sad on the inside.

I watched her asleep. I took photos.

And for a tiny, fleeting, fraction of a second I thought about taking her with me when I left.

Friday, February 20, 2009

honest scrap

Thank you to the wonderfully sweet Sarah and Monique for awarding me this. They both write so beautifully - I wish I could find the words that they do. And apologies that it has taken so long to respond. I think the award has done the rounds so I am not tagging anyone - join in though if you haven't.

Here goes;

1. I have a very short fuse (at times) and can fly off the handle over nothing.
2. I don't like tight underpants.
3. People assume I am far more organised than I actually am. They ask about my work and family and 'how do I do it?' Well I don't - my studio is a complete mess, I have orders waiting to be finished, a week or more of clean clothes are waiting to be put away, at least a days worth of dishes are on the sink most of the time... But I keep the bathroom clean...
4. I didn't drive until I was in my late 20's. Well I drove earlier but, I didn't get my licence.
5. I have lived in London, the US, travelled around the world but I have never been to the west coast of my home state - the tiny Island State... It’s only a 4-5 hour drive my home town and I have just never got there.
6. When I was young I pretended I was adopted from the Netherlands or the Czech Republic...
(I have 2 adopted sisters - one was born in Thailand, and the little one was born in Macau)
7. I have great ideas and plans but often they don't get any further than that.
8. I am terrible at keeping in contact with friends. Luckily they understand and are generally just as terrible. We love each other dearly though.
9. I accidentally left the hose on the pumpkins for 6 hours last week - for any locals they will know how naughty and illegal this is. There are very strict water restrictions in the eastern states of Australia.
10. I spend a lot of my waking time fantasising about home renovations.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

its hard, for everyone...

I think there is a misunderstanding that because I have a daughter, loosing Alice is not as bad some how. People don't expect that I 'need' to talk about Alice because I am 'lucky' that I have Minnie. Yes, I am lucky. Not that I believe in luck. I am fortunate and I know this. Everyday I am reminded of what I have and what I have lost. I see Alice in Minnie... I know I could be one of the many women I know that struggle to get pregnant and struggle even harder to hold on to their babies. But, I am also sad and missing the girl I don't have with me.

I do imagine that loosing your first baby adds another layer of complexity to this awful time. When everything you imagined would happen doesn't happen.

Does having a child make it 'easier' when your baby dies? What a question. I don't know and I will never know as I have Minnie. I don't think it needs exploring or examining. I don't think I need too. What I know that it is sad for everyone. I know that my sweet friend with 7 children will tell that loosing her baby was devastating in every way, shape and form. And still is.

I am not for one minute saying that I am worse off ,or better off for that matter. I am just saying that its crap and I am sad and that I grieve Alice while I am being a mother to Minnie.

Loosing a baby is beyond awful. For anyone. Regardless.

I don't need to tell you all that.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

explaining the unexplainable...

From the day Alice died we have been open and as honest as we can be with our daughter Minnie. We continue to explain that Alice Buttons was born too early and was too little and too sick to survive. We tell her that sometimes people die when they are little and there is nothing that we can do to stop this happening. We have read lots of books about animals and people dying. We have had conversations about all our loved ones that have died. Like her Opa and her Big Papa and my sweet friend Zoe and my dear Jackie's husband. And like all the other little babies that Alice is now friends with...

Minnie often talks about of Alice and plays games where Alice is the other 'character.' They play 'together' so sweetly in these games. Sometimes Alice is the little doll that Minnie carries around and tucks safely in bed. My heart is ever so heavy when I am sitting watching and listening to 'their' special games.

Several days ago Minnie caught me off guard when she asked if we could 'colour in this cardboard box to put Alice Buttons in the ground.' She was holding a little empty cardboard box and some pencils. Minnie understands that sometimes people die and are buried in the ground. I didn't know what to say to Minnie as Alice was cremated. I could not think of a way to explain this to a just turned 3 year old without terrifying her.

We coloured in the box and I wished that she wouldn't ask where Alice's little body was.

I never like to think about that.