Past, Present, Future

Today has been an exhausting day. There have been moments of inspiration and planning, lots of talking, some playing, lots of crying, some shouting and swearing. Some feeling that nothing will be right ever again and some determination that everything needs to now be better than ever.

My head is burning, my heart is aching and often I do not know if I am coming or going and I just want the earth to swallow me up.

I long for a quiet place just me and my laptop.

I crave company and a chance to remember my beautiful baby out loud.

I want to show people photos and rejoice in my wee angel’s smile.

I want to break things.

I want to be held while I cry.

Today started well. Last night David stayed up with me as he was busy making plans for Esther and William’s new bedroom.

We need to move them from their cots to beds and David is building them the most amazing beds.

They are going to be small single beds, each in it’s own little room within a room. It is hard to describe.

There will be stairs between the rooms that will lead to an upper level where they will have their own area to play.

The room will also have a reading nook and the walls will be sky blue and littered with stars of all sizes and materials. One star will be chosen to bear the name of Matilda Mae.

Star of the Sea

I have just ordered some lovely starry bedding from H&M and want to fill the room with wooden toys for a really peaceful place to be and play.

David and I are obviously now overly concerned about safe sleeping and so we have ordered these mattresses from Mothercare that are safe and hygenic and prevent overheating. With no cause of death for Matilda Mae I am terrified to think that she may have overheated though the night she died was so bitterly cold.

David is building the beds out of the safest materials he can find and we are going to paint the walls with Nursery Paint. This was recommended to me by Emma from Me The Man and The Baby. Having looked at their website it was easy to convince David that this is the paint we must use for Esther and William’s room.

The paint is

VOC Free – BS EN71 compliant so no chemicals in our paint !
Antibacterial – We add silver colloid to our paint which is resistant to 99% of pathogens, meaning your walls stay germ free!
Made from natural soya beans.

The colour we like the best is Whisper which seems to fit with the peaceful, tranquil, safe environment that we are trying to create.

In absolute contrast to this planning for the future we have also been busy planning for the present and for Matilda’s goodbye.

Today we went to the funeral home to start realising our plans for our celebration of The Little Life of Matilda Mae.

I was surprised at how composed I was able to be as we had to make some horrible decisions.

We had to choose a coffin and at first we accepted a white wooden one but then I asked David if we could buy her a woollen one. It comes with a blanket to keep her warm and a mattress to keep her comfy. It is softer to look at and gentler to touch. It seemed just perfect for our beautiful little girl. She will be cradled, cocooned, as we give her back to God.

The other thing we talked about was transport. I did not want Matilda’s casket to be on show for all to see as it is not nice for anyone to have to witness a child taking their final journey.

There will be one car for Matilda. David and I can travel with her if we like. A decision I think we will have to make on the day. I hope to have the strength to not let our baby travel alone.

The car is called a Hearsette and to our relief it can travel at normal speeds as we do not want a dragged out journey to the church.

We have asked for Matilda to be brought to the chapel of rest so that we can see her. Because the funeral is to be almost a month away we have decided to have her embalmed. I started to read about this process and now wish that I had not. I am unsure whether I will actually go and see Baby Tilda. I feel that I should and there are things I want to say and do and give to her but I am so so worried about seeing her. David wants to see her. He wants to say goodbye and tell her that he is sorry.

If we do go to see her we can place some items in the coffin with her. I have had these chosen since the day after she died. I want to make sure that she has these things to comfort her in heaven and so she knows that we will love her always. Our darling Matilda Mae.

With over three weeks until the funeral David and I are going to take Esther and William away. Our two troublesome toddlers are in desperate need of some quality mummy and daddy time. They are the ones who need us most right now. David and I have promised to be happy for them and with them and not get cross with each other if we seem to be too happy. It is hard to spend time with Esther and William and not giggle and smile.

After the funeral our routine will return to normal, our new kind of normal, without Matilda Mae.

The moment that I fell apart in the funeral home was when I asked them to please make sure that they closed her eyes as the hospital had not been able to do so. I want to know that she is at peace, wherever she may be.

Matilda Mae’s funeral will be held at St Mary’s Church in Kennington, Ashford on the 7th March 2013. She would have been just over 10 months old.

22 thoughts on “Past, Present, Future

  1. Hi Jennie

    I have been so very sorry to hear about your loss of little Matilda Mae. I met you a couple of times at Maidstone Twins Club and spoke to you about premature birth as my boys were also very early at 27 weeks. I remember you holding your baby and her big brown eyes, she was gorgeous and I remember how good you were with looking after her and the twins at the same time!

    I read an article this weekend in ‘You’ in the Daily Mail about a couple coping with the death of their young children and the effect it had on siblings too. There was a charity mentioned called which apparently provided a lot of advice in helping to support the siblings as well as the parents. Just read it and thought of you and wanted to mention it, just in case you weren’t aware and you felt it could offer you some help.

    Thinking of you and your family a lot, and once again am so sorry for your loss.
    Kind regards

  2. Jennie, I’ve been reading your blog but not commenting, but I couldn’t leave without saying something today. You write so eloquently, but I don’t really know what to say to you. I hope that writing about your little star is helping you in some way to get through the unbearable and unimaginable. My heart is breaking for you all. Thinking of you x

  3. Such incredible strength and courage from you both Jennie.

    If you need company later on, I can come and play, look at photos, hug, whatever you need.

    Those bedrooms sound amazing.


  4. I don’t know you, but came across your blog, and just wanted to say how very very sorry I am for the loss of beautiful Matilda Mae. She looks such a happy, jolly little thing, and you must be feeling her loss in every cell of your body.

    I’m thinking of you all and crying for you.


  5. I am so very sorry to read your updates, and hesitant to leave comments while also knowing how important comments can be.
    The woollen coffin is beautiful. My daughter was buried in a woven coffin, it looked so pretty at the burial that some people thought it was a basket of flowers.
    Try not to worry about seeing Matilda.folow your instincts and go if you need to.
    We had to wait just over two weeks to bury our daughter, we didn’t have her embalmed and she was very delicate by the time we could see her, which meant we had to change our plans to have her at home the night before the funeral.
    Only my husband and myself went to see her, she was beautiful, and we are so glad we could say goodbye to her.
    I don’t talk about these details often, I hope I’m not offending you by doing so. I know that sometimes it helps even to just talk about the practical things with someone who might understand a little of how you feel. None of us know exactly how other grieving parents feel, but we know the pain.
    Sending you love, though I don’t know you, you and your family and your beautiful little Matilda Mae are in my thoughts. x

  6. Dear Jennie,
    Such strength and courage for you both.

    If you would like company later on to play, look at photos, hug, whatever you need, I am usually around.

    The bedroom plans sound amazing.


  7. I can never read your posts all at once as need to stop myself from crying too much as my little one is starting to pick up on mummy’s feelings but I can’t help myself keep on coming here hoping that your family can find comfort in life and keep on going. I’m sure your little angel will be up in the sky looking down at her family giggling away with the twins, she will be laughing, feeling the love from her family.
    I have been crying since the day I read your post where you tell how you found her dead in her blankets and if I can’t stop crying I can only imagine how hard this is for you all. Be strong, love your family and then the time comes be happy, that will keep your little angel happy in the sky.

  8. Dearest Jennie,

    Words can’t express the sorrow of this present season. Please know you and your precious family are in my thoughts and prayers.

    Much love,
    Pauline xoxo

  9. Your plans for the twins room sound beautiful and I think some time away as a family will be wonderful for you all. I think about you each day and your strength – in the worst of circumstances – astounds me. Your little Matilda Mae will be so proud of her Mummy, her Daddy and her brother and sister xx

  10. You are so strong and so brave. Matilda Mae will be so proud, shining up high showing all the other stars how to shine so bright. Although we have never spoke, you are often in my thoughts and prayers. Sending you love, hugs and strength. I am so sorry for your loss. Matilda Mae was a beautiful child and will remain in yours and our hearts forever x

  11. We only met once at a baby signing class but I still remember William pulling rather cheeky faces at me, I’m not surprised that he makes you giggle and laugh and I’m sure that Matilda Mae is watching down on you all and joining in, long may the laughter continue.

    I just wanted to say that the mattress is a great choice, my little boy has one. For wooden toys you could try here

    Some time away and some rest sounds like a very good idea, you need a sharp saw to cut logs.

    Thinking of you all xx

  12. Ever since I heard of your loss through fellow mummy bloggers I have had a heavy heart for you, I wish the world could take your pain away and it really is amazing how strong you are being. I just wanted to send you our wishes from Wales and that little Matilda really has touched the heart of so many.

    Laura x

  13. Jennie

    What an inspiring post and what strength you must have to share your innermost thoughts and fears for your precious bundle.

    It brings back so many memories of my time exactly 6 years ago when my son also died and the reason was unknown. I too was unsure about seeing Alexander and I was led by day by day as to the right thing for me, as you too must do.
    I wrapped his blanket around him and placed a few of his favourite toys in the coffin so he wouldn’t feel quite so alone without us all. We travelled with Alexander on his final journey in a ‘normal’ car that belonged to the funeral director, I too felt it was too sad for people to see.

    The ache never goes away Jennie and I admire your strength and determination to keep going, I’m not really sure I can find the right words to say it but if it feels right for you and your family then it is, everyone grieves so very differently and whilst writing about Matilda is helping you now I know that in the future it will help another heartbroken Mummy and Daddy.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you all and whilst I never knew Matilda I shall be blowing a few bubbles for her on the 7th March, I hope this is ok?

    Nicola x

  14. What a very beuatiful baby. What a very lucky girl to have been loved, and still loved, and tenderly cared for SO very, very, much. I cannot begin to comprehend what you must be going through. Her photos show how utterly happy she was and you, her parents, gave her that very precious opportunity.

    Although I don’t know you, I cannot help but think about you all. May time give you strength. x

  15. I’m in awe of all these plans you are making. I did nothing. Just went into shock. The hospital did it all and it was so basic. Beautiful but basic. Different circumstances I guess. I don’t think I could have done it any other way, scbu took all the decision making out of me, but what you are planning seems perfect for you and Matilda Mae.

    You are doing so well. It’s okay to crash too. This is such a roller coaster.

  16. I love that you have gathered things together to send with her to Heaven, you’re such a good mummy. I hope that you manage to do what is right for you, Tilda will understand regardless.

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