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Diamonds do Break

Updated: Feb 9, 2020

My second post to mark the end of Baby Loss Awareness week is dedicated to my husband Tim, and all the grieving daddies out there.

Tim was my rock during my pregnancy with Alexander. He went to every routine and none routine hospital visit with me. He made me breakfast every morning and cooked me dinner every night. He smoothed every worry away and shared every excitement throughout our journey. I remember how he would talk to Alexander and say goodnight to him every night and how we would discuss names for our baby.

Tim was my rock throughout the 2 days of labour with Alexander, at the start when I was able to go shopping, when I was throwing up from the pain, right to the final hours until Alexander was delivered. Nothing prepared him for the exhaustion he faced during my 2 days of labour and the 16 days afterwards. Nothing prepared him for the shock of watching me and Alexander being wheeled into theatre and the alarms going off and then learning that Alexander was poorly. Nothing prepared him for the 16 days of looking after his baby son, loving him, bonding with him, all the time knowing that he had to say goodbye to him soon. At the same time, he was supporting me, physically from the C-section and emotionally. Nothing prepared him for when we said goodbye to Alexander and the dark days that followed; the visits to the funeral parlour, choosing a coffin instead of a cot, carrying his son into the funeral service, watching me cry as I hug Alexander’s ashes to me, burying Alexander’s ashes. He didn’t cry like I cried. He slept whilst I was awake at night. He got out of bed and went back to work whilst I slept most of the days away. Tim was my rock, my shining, unbreakable rock, my diamond.

A year later, Tim came home after a week away at a work meeting. Tim’s eyes looked dull and nothing seemed to excite him. He wasn’t as patient with me and he didn’t have the energy for anything. He didn’t even want to go to the gym. Eventually, he revealed that he felt depressed. But what did he mean he was depressed? And why was he depressed now? I was far from the supporting and caring wife that I should have been. What did he mean that he felt depressed and why now when I’m not crying myself to sleep every night? It just didn’t make sense to me. Although somewhat unsupporting and uncaring, I was worried. I contacted our bereavement midwife and his counsellor to speak to him. Looking back, I now see the vacant expressions on his face that he would carry with him. I remember him staring emptily into space in bed that night after carrying Alexander in his lidded basket earlier that day. I remember the pain on his face when Alexander’s ashes were buried alongside his own mother whom he had watched pass away two months before saying goodbye to Alexander. Looking back, I see the exhaustion he carried every day this past year. Clouded by my own anger, despair and sadness, I didn’t see that Tim was hurting too. He feels the pain I feel and misses Alexander as much as I do. Tim is my rock, my diamond but Tim is Alexander’s daddy, he loves Alexander too and he is not immune to the pain. Diamonds do break.

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