One day at a time

So it’s been awhile since I’ve posted. Over the last 2 months I have been taking time to focus on myself, going to therapy once a week and getting physically healthy too.

Therapy isn’t without it’s ups and downs. I have found that the hardest and most difficult times are the ones that make all the difference. Finding what feels uncomfortable and unravelling those emotions is progressing. There have been lots of unexpected realisations, a big one being that I felt I let Jack down. Not just by my body not keeping him safe, but by losing hope in the end. This was a surprise to me as in my front brain (what I call the conscious brain) I didn’t and don’t feel that way. That said, it’s always the “what ifs” that play on your mind.

Letting go of my need to comfort and be there for others is a personality trait that I struggle with. It’s how I am, but in being people’s rock and staying strong I have neglected myself. Being able to throw my hands up and say “I’m struggling, I’m angry, I’m heartbroken” is ok. Telling people to go elsewhere for comfort, is ok. Finally knocking down my walls and just being sad/angry/hurt/broken has been a great move forward. It hasn’t been easy for those close to me to handle sometimes, I never realised how much of a resolve I have. How I’ll fight kicking and screaming before I’ll shed a tear and “cause a scene”. Realising that the world will keep turning and that no one expects me to be ok and so strong as I have been is liberating.

I’m still very much a work in progress but I feel more and more like my old self. I feel that fight and need to keep going returning. I’m not quite at a run yet, but I’m definitely at a slow jog.

– Allana x

P.S. I will be doing some fundraising for baby loss awareness month this October. Please feel free to share my JustGiving link or if you have friends who need t-shirts, hoodies or baby grows visit my shop (www.shop4tshirts.co.uk) and 10% will be donated.

PTSD

So there’s a part of this road that I haven’t really shared with anyone. Not only am I traveling on the grief cycle but I also have ptsd which triggers my existing anxiety. It’s a hard thing to live with and be able to grieve fully. This is something we are both struggling with on a daily basis.

Ptsd is when your brain gets stuck following trauma. In my case it means I smell newborn smell and get silent clips of times with Jack in NICU. It’s like when you look at a memory except I can’t place exactly when the clip happened, there’s no narration or sound, it’s a very short memory clip. Anything can set it off and it happens at least once or twice a day. It’s a split second but it’s just stopping my progression though grief to moving on. This then triggers my anxiety which in turn pushes the negative depressive thoughts to the surface.

All in all it’s been a tough time and we are both taking steps to get through. I’m back getting cbt and just looking after me. I tend to try and look after others or make excuses for shitty people so that I can have an easier life. Mark does a very similar thing. No more. We are both putting ourselves and immediate family (including close friends) who matter and are there for us first. We have cut out people who have negatively impacted us. People who care and are important will always understand and be there in one way or another.

Self healing isn’t always obvious, it’s sometimes first accepting you need to let go. That maybe things need to get worse before they can get better. It’s a long road ahead but I truly believe that Mark and I will get there.

– Allana x

Mindfulness

I try to live this everyday. By choosing to have a open and positive mindset I am able to grieve fully. I’m not rushing or dragging it out. My head, body and mind are just open to how I need to and do feel. I refuse to be consumed by grief or push it away. Neither are productive or things that I think Jack would want.

So we still haven’t had the post mortem results yet. It’s hard waiting as I want to shut that door of unknown. I know why he died but we need to know why he came early. It’s hard having that unanswered. I know we may not get one but at least I can deal with that once it’s done.

We had a lovely letter from Southampton Hospital thanking us for the donations from Jack’s funeral. In it they also included a pack of forget me nots. I’m not sure why but I have had a real connection with these flowers and see them everywhere. Seeing the packet brought tears to my eyes. Not sad ones but just raw emotion. It was unexpected and really touching.

We still have our JustGiving open but it’s not where I want it to be. I’ll have to start pushing it again. I really hope we can reach £5k by Jack’s 1st birthday in Neverland. That would be so wonderful.

Not long now until the wedding! 3 months and 2 days to go. ❤️

– Allana x

Passing time

Time is moved by forward and life goes on. We have found a kind of new normal. I keep expecting to go back to how I was or wake up a new version of myself, but it’s a slow process. I’ll never be who I was before. I have lost a little more of my sparkle. I’m much less tolerant of people. I used to make an effort with everyone, even when they were pretty shit friends. I don’t now. I give exactly enough to most and more to those I love and value. I don’t think that’s a bad thing though. I just know that life is too short and precious to waste on any one or thing that doesn’t deserve or appreciate it. I have found that I do have a great deal of wonderful people around me. I’m very lucky in that respect.

We still haven’t had Jacks pm back yet. It’s hard. We cannot move forward without that. It’s like the last part of this. It’s keeping me in this limbo between the old me and the me I’m becoming. Fingers crossed that it will only be a few more weeks!

Taking each day as it comes. The sad times are starting to be outweighed by the good. Life is slowly moving on. I know we will find a new normal. One that is enriched by our memories of Jack.

– Allana x

Rainy days are ok

It’s a horrible day, all moody and grey but I’m doing ok.

Having days that are ok are ok. I’m not always sad, I have sadness. I am a mother with empty arms but a full heart for my baby. He’s that little twinkle in my eye that I carry with me always.

I started my Your Contour 12 week program yesterday. I did really well. It was leg day and I managed to complete my workout. I was slow and it hurt, but I did it. Don’t get me wrong, my arse is aching like crazy today but I feel better. I can do this. I’ll post before and after pictures at the end. For my own sanity I’m not talking weight etc, just that I have a lot to lose. I need to be healthy and strong when we try again. It’s key to ensuring we have a better pregnancy and more of a chance for bringing our baby home this time. That purpose is the driver in this.

So after my breakfast goes down I’m going to do my upper body workout and get on with my day. I’m not stopping. I’m not self sabotaging. This is too important.

Even on the grey days you have to keep moving forward. Don’t stop and don’t give up. You can do this and so can I.

– Allana x

Onwards and upwards

I’m putting my best foot forward and venturing out on my own today. Mark and I haven’t spent a lot of time apart since Jack was born. A friend has given him some gardening maintenance work this week so I’m on my own. I’m taking the time to start exercising, walking the dog, posting orders, working on the tshirt site and getting used to my company again.

It’s funny, I used to love being by myself. I wanted nothing more than to have me time. Now I’m less keen. My anxiety and depression are pretty high again, understandable I guess. Just feel like somethings going to go wrong. I hope not, I think we’ve had our share of that for one lifetime.

I need to focus on my health in all ways. I’m starting a plan by the lovely ladies at Your Contour. Before getting pregnant I used to train with them, they really know their stuff.

Losing weight isn’t just cosmetic for me. I need a healthy body in order to try again for a baby in the future. Being overweight seriously impacts chances of having a premature baby. It also increases the chance of all sorts of medical problems. I want to give us the best possible chance for a term baby. I’m aching to bring a baby home, to have my baby with me. We deserve to be physical parents.

Right, must go walk the dog and get on with the day. Wish me luck!

– Allana x