It always surprises me how many people cannot quite bring themselves to actually say out loud that Teddy died. It often gets referred to as “What happened to you.” or “After what you’ve been through.” I feel as though people try so hard to protect me from something that there is no hiding from; and something that I don’t want to be protected from. Teddy died; he was here, he was so very loved, and then we lost him.
I think I say it out loud so often when I am talking to people as a way of trying to get my subconscious to catch up on what has happened. It makes it more real, and each time it’s said it reminds me that he was here. For that reason alone, I never want other people to try to protect me from the reality of it. It’s too late for that after all. I believe that when you fill the space of loss with all of your love, that you begin to make their existence more positive. Yes they are gone, but the love that has been left and that continues to grow from them being here is something very special indeed.
My heart always bursts with pride when I hear other people say Teddy’s name, or when I see it written down. When I am writing cards to people I often find myself wanting to write his name after ours as the space that follows ours just looks so blank; instead my pen just stops, and hovers for a moment. I love it when people write his name down in the sand or in special places and send it to me, it never fails to make me smile. I am so lucky to have an incredible group of ladies who have become my dear friends; we have all lost our babies and we take every opportunity to write their names together and send pictures to each other. When I was on the beach in Cornwall I sent one with the caption; “Took the gang to the beach today!” and I know it gives them that spark of joy that I get each and every time I see or hear Teddy’s name. As it turns out, that little gang are becoming quite the seasoned travellers thanks to our insistence on writing their names wherever we may go! One of my favourite images was sent to me by a fellow mama, Natalie, when she ran the Oxford half marathon last October. Knowing that Teddy, her son Leo, and all of the other babies were there in spirit to spur her on for each mile was such a heart warming thought.
I just want Teddy to be remembered, to be talked about. He will miss out on all of the “firsts” and everything else to come, so for now he lives in me and my husband and in everyone’s lives that he touched; and I feel as though we owe it to him to say his name each and every day. So if you know someone who has lost a baby, don’t be afraid to say their name, if they are anything like me (that’s a massively proud mama by the way) then it may just make their day.