Monday, 8 February 2010
My sister's baby
My younger sister has had a baby - a little boy called William who was born yesterday. He is her first child and the first baby to be born in the family since Laura died. I didn't know that I'd really been worrying about my sister until I woke up this morning and realised that I didn't have to worry any more (or at least not as much). I did call her on Saturday night and she said, 'Yes, I thought it was all going to happen yesterday but now it has all gone quiet.' Of course, I wanted to yell down the phone, 'WHAT DO YOU MEAN - QUIET?' But I managed not to do that. I'm so, so pleased that she has had a boy. That is a real help to me and to her. I didn't want everyone looking in the pram and thinking, 'I wonder if Laura would have looked like that.' (Would anyone have thought that? Or am I kidding myself?) Also that wouldn't be fair on my sister. Her experience is her experience and she wants to enjoy it freely, without being weighed down by my baggage. Today I mentioned to a couple of woman on the school run that I was relieved the baby is a boy. They didn't get the point at all. And they didn't understand why I had been scared and worried. Perhaps it was stupid of me to think that they might understand. On Sunday, while my sister was in labour I did ring a lovely lady who I know in this area who also had a stillbirth. She is such a support to me. I said to her, 'My sister is in labour. I'm not upset but I just wanted to say those words to someone.' She understood entirely and it really helped. Tomorrow I might have to take my son to see the baby. That could be a bit more challenging. I think my sister knows that I'm not going to hold her son. I've never held a baby since Laura died and I'm not thinking of starting now. I'll be OK if the baby is big and fat and jolly looking. What I can't cope with is any tiny, skinny little babies which look a bit premature. But at the moment I'm not worried about all this. A day will probably come when I'll wail about all the attention that this new baby is getting and I'll think, 'I wanted Laura to have all the cards and the flowers and the new baby grows, all the love and the care.' But for the moment I don't feel like that. I've got much better at simply deciding not to feel certain things.