Today is a day of excitement and a healthy dose of nerves as I sit with my daughter and her partner in readiness to bring my first grandchild into the world. Excitement as it’s a privilege to experience my child’s life, as she prepares to birth her very own child. Nerves because my daughter is a type 1 diabetic so her pregnancy is not straight forward and we need to bring the baby on a little earlier due to some concerns a pregnant diabetic can face.
And underpinning it all is a heavy sadness as I can’t share any of this with my mum, having lost her 3 weeks ago. It really is a mixed bag of emotions today.
There’s a simmering guilt for feeling the excitement and the joy as I grieve mums loss. The amount of times I’ve gone to call her in the past week a stark reminder that I still have a lot to process. My daughter heavily pregnant and needing to focus on herself and her baby, still struggling with her own emotions at losing such an important person in her life. But the most important thing right now is the health of my daughter and the safe birth of my granddaughter.
I’m reminded as I sit here, listening to the comforting and beautiful sound of my granddaughters heartbeat as we await labour to kick in, that it really did not seem that long ago when I laid in a hospital bed awaiting my daughters arrival. 27 years ago, yet it’s as clear in my head as if it was yesterday. 27 years ago I held her in my arms with all the hopes and dreams we have for our babies, and as I look at her I could not be more proud. She still has the blonde hair she was born with and the same huge blue eyes, and now she has a big swollen belly, housing the life of this precious little girl.
I have faced several losses over the past few years, all of which I’ve had to grieve in different ways. But losing your mum is such a profound loss, and losing her within weeks of welcoming a new baby into the world, a reflection of the bitter sweetness of the circle of life. For now my grief is on hold, well at least it’s simmering quietly on the inside, as I support my family, as I focus my energy on my daughter.
My belief is that my mum is here, with us. That she will protect her granddaughter and great granddaughter. It’s how I have to think right now, it’s what gives me comfort. Otherwise my emotions become overwhelming. And I don’t believe that is at all a weakness, I believe it’s courageous to be aware enough to understand exactly where I am right now. I’m not going to pretend I’m “all good”, or that I’m not feeling a whirlpool of emotions. I’m not going to pretend I’m not in pain, so others feel comfortable. The reality is I’m not ok, I will be, but for now I’m doing the best I can.
So as I sign off this blog, I am conscious that the next time I write we’ll have welcomed our new baby girl into our family. A little girl who will be adored by me, her Mimi, and a little girl who will be taught all about the great grandmother that so desperately wanted to meet her but couldn’t hold on anymore.
I call out to the universe and my mum to watch over my girl and her baby girl as we now wait for her to enter the world.