How bizarre. Two years ago I was running around madly packing and unpacking baby clothes, washing them, folding them into tiny little pink bundles and wondering with a smile whether this level of organization would be able to continue after I had my little baby girl. Up and down the stairs I went, sorting out the children's rooms as much as I could - though stair walking manic behaviour wasn't really within my ability too much, being so heavily pregnant.
Two years ago. Two years ago on Sunday everything would shatter like a fish bowl dropped onto a marble floor. You can run around and try to pick up the fish in a panic, as they flop around, losing their lives... But it doesn't work, does it?
You have to lovingly sit there, rescue as many fish as you can - though some will die, then spread out the skirt of your young maidenhood on the floor in the sunshine. In the glass. In the water. And pick up remnants, remnants in sorrow, placing them on a collage in front of you. If you're lucky, eventually you can look at the collage of your new life and it can be beautiful.
Because the thing is, beauty isn't always happy, is it? It can be terribly sad. Sometimes the most beautiful things are the saddest things. Heart-achingly beautiful things can be so gutting. I think the word "gutting" is a very good way to describe some stages of grief, since they do feel like someone has come and taken your insides out. Inside your chest is a vacuum. A vacuum with a black hole inside it. Even light cannot escape... Amazing though, aren't they - these big feelings? A dual narration by David Attenborough and Stephen Hawking would be fitting: "See, the phenomenon of the broken heart there, spinning in the boundless void of space. She crumples in her agony as the pain threatens to overwhelm her every waking minute - but she knows she has to stumble on..."
Coming up to anniversaries is really...difficult. There's not too much else to say about that. I would have had a two year old running around, and I don't. It kind of takes your breath away at times... I hug Bella and try to assimilate her essence into me so that I can protect her forever. My eye sockets hurt. My throat feels tight and my head is like a balloon under pressure.
This Sunday it'll be it. Then it'll be over again and I won't feel quite as weak. A lot of people are coming out to watch the sun rise in memory of Josie, and I'm so grateful for the support. I have found that it's the people who continue to remember that I feel the most connected with. The people who continue to acknowledge her small life to have been worth something. It feels beautiful to know that she made an impression on the world. She certainly made a difference in my life - I wouldn't change having carried her for anything. She was worth it.