Posted by: irishdad | July 30, 2009

So, what was I thinking during the early days?

It’s 5 am and I can’t sleep and I was lying in bed thinking about when we got the news that Littlegirl was dead and the days around when she was born.

My thoughts about it all have evolved over the last eight months, (sometimes I think that grief is like moving to a new town – as the months go by you keep discovering new streets and alleyways, different vantage points) but I was trying to go back and think about how I was feeling right then, when it was all completely new and shocking.

Some of the things going through my mind included:

  • This is a ridiculous situation. Ridiculous because it was so unreal. This was the kind of shit that happens to other people.
  • I’m not letting this ruin our lives for ever. This is the kind of thing that destroys people and relationships and that can’t happen.
  • Things could be worse. All of a sudden I felt connected to people everywhere who had experienced tragedy – your tsunamis, famines, car crashes, 9-11’s. I thought that at least we had each other and Littleboy and families who cared for us.
  • I haven’t smoked in 4 years, but I could do with one now. (I didn’t go back to those bad boys!)
  • I’d rather either that we had never had Littlegirl at all, or that she was alive and well ’cause this is the worst possible outcome.
  • If one more person mentions angels or how some relative in heaven is looking after the baby I will blow my top.
  • Let’s have a huge funeral. Let’s march through the streets and stop the traffic. Everyone needs to know that this is our daughter and this is what happened to her. Everyone needs to feel our pain.
  • Why does this counsellor woman appear about every two hours and give me another piece of paper or form that we’re apparently going to need in the coming days and weeks? How about organising a folder and giving me all this stuff at once.
  • How come everybody else in this fucking hospital on this fucking floor have come in here and delivered healthy babies? Why is it our room that everybody tip toes past. Why can’t this just happen to someone else.

Get the drift?



  1. Yup, sounds about right. On NPR yesterday, I heard an author reading her new book of poetry about her daughter who was murdered. It focuses on her grief and it’s called, “Slamming Open the Door.” I just ordered it on Amazon and it was only about $10. I will let you know what it’s like…I hated all the crappy religious books people gave me along with lines like, “your babies are better off with God…” Sigh. I’m so sorry.

  2. Hi,

    I’m listening to the piece on NPR, the book does sound interesting, though I’ll admit I haven’t read much (any) poetry since college.

    Let me know how you get on with it.

  3. Yes, it is definitely like moving to a new town. I like that description.

    I thought some of these thoughts. Particularly I the ‘I don’t want this to ruin my life’ thought and the ‘hmmm, now I want to start smoking again’ thought. I also didn’t go back to my old nicotine addled ways but geesh I wanted a cigarette.

    And the funeral. Oh yes.

    I’m so terribly sorry.

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