When I hear about parents dying, my first thought is always the children. My heart aches for them, knowing they’ll go to bed at night crying for their mum or dad and struggling to understand why they’re not there to comfort them.
I am terrified of leaving my baby behind. I don’t know why it haunts me so much but from the day I became a mother I’ve been panicked at the thought of dying. It’s truly one of my greatest fears.
It’s not the end of my life that worries me; it’s the beginning of his life without me. Grieving for a parent is something no child should have to do. It physically hurts my heart to imagine my son would ever have to come to terms with the news that mummy is never coming home.
Sometimes I write him little notes or record video messages so he has something to remember me by. Just in case. Like this one…
Sometimes I hold you long after you’ve fallen asleep, cradling your little body next to mine, your head snuggled into my neck, your cheek resting on my chest.
And I squeeze you.
I squeeze you to bursting and press your heart into mine so my love might burn into your skin like a tattoo. So that if I ever die, you will remember what my love feels like. So, when you’ve forgotten the sound of my laugh or the curve of my smile or the smell of my skin, you might remember what it felt like to be loved by me.
I squeeze you and whisper, “remember me” because I’m so afraid of leaving you. And I tell you I love you because there are no bigger words to describe it even though it feels so much greater than plain old love.
You don’t know what I’m doing and if you were awake you’d just push me away and run off to play. But I want you to know that I do this. I want you to know how much you mean to my life and how completely you’ve stolen my heart. I want you to know that if I ever left, I would be right there, inside your heart, because you’re not just some person I love, you are a part of my soul. I could never fully leave you behind.
I can’t bear to think about not being there to hold you when you cry or to explain where I’ve gone. The thought of you calling for me at night rips at my heart. I never want you to feel that pain. In a perfect world, I will always be by your side so you’ll never need to know what life is like without me cheering you on.
Thud, you are crazy and wild and so full of joy it makes my world spin off-kilter. I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you. I just hope that’s a really, really long time.
Love Mummy xxx