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On Loss, Pregnancy and the Future

Ceri-Ann Brown by Ceri-Ann Brown Additional Needs

Ceri-Ann Brown

Ceri-Ann Brown

My name is Ceri-Ann Brown and I live in Stockport, Manchester. I live with the love of my life Phil, my amazing daughter (Amy-Rose) and my giant gu...

It is a sort of sad way to live when you think about it because really we should be cherishing every moment from the fantastic to the mundane because this is life and as far as I know we only get one attempt at it.

It is thoughts like this that often keep me up at night, along with the usual other worries.

It is thought cycles like this that can send you into a bit of an existential crisis, but they are also the thoughts that spark you to really think about why you are here and what this whole being here on earth is about.

Life has been a bit trying on me in this last year.

I hope you don't mind me sharing, and I apologise now if you view this as an overshare - but I have wanted a second child for quite some time now.

The reasons for me are tenfold - I am an only child myself and always wonder what it would have been like to have a brother or sister to annoy, is my main reason.

The other is one a lot of you may relate to - you sort of want to make up for those things you were robbed of the day you became the parent to a disabled child.

For me, holding the child straight away and not after a painful five days watching her fight for her life, orally feeding/breast feeding. Stuff like that.

Now I don't want anyone to translate that in a negative way at all.

What I am trying to say is I LOVE this special needs community that I am very fortunate to be a part of.

I sometimes feel very privileged that I am an exclusive member of this almost secret world.

There are some incredible people out there - specialists, children, parents, teachers, all sorts. I absolutely feel the best thing that has happened to me in life is being exposed to this whole other world.

A world where the sight of a feeding pump bag could mean a new friend for life from a simple supermarket trip.

But I also crave being part of that other world, the world where a child DOES meet those milestones.

Sometimes I find other people's children so whimsical with their words and their eating, it is like a different but intriguing culture to me.

So basically I am greedy.

I want the best of both worlds and I feel that both children would benefit hugely from sharing these two worlds, as would I.

In fact I strongly believe the world would be a better place if we all took more time to understand the many different ways people live.

Unfortunately for me the whole second child thing wasn't quite as easy as I had anticipated.

My pregnancy with Amy was nothing special, just a standard, good, average pregnancy.

I had no issues the whole time. It was the unexpected birth trauma that got us where we are today.

So I naively assumed my body was really good at being pregnant but sadly I suffered two miscarriages last year. So not only am I terrified of birth (I would be opting for an elective section anyway but this doesn't make me much less scared), but it now means I am terrified of my body and pregnancy.

Next week I have an operation on my womb because the miscarriages have caused a myoma.

It isn't a major operation but I find with each internal examination or invasive procedure I am further reminded just how fragile life is and how unfair it can sometimes be.

It is a further reminder of those two babies I won't get to meet.

People tell you "oh well, you will get there.", and I am sure there are many women out there who would retort "I know I will, but it doesn't change the fact that I wanted THAT baby."

No new baby will ever compensate for the loss of the other, it is a separate entity, a different due date, different everything.

My heart goes out to anyone struggling for a child or who has lost one or anything like that.

I had never realised I even wanted children and now listen to me!

So before you get your violins out or begin to cry, my point of this post is that we are always waiting.

Part of me thinks, "Things will be better when I have another child." They probably won't be.

You will either see me continue to complain about pregnancy issues, or you will see me being sad at how different two lives can be and the struggles faced, or how busy I am with two!

I think I will always have something to whinge about, I think it's my hobby.

Recently I kept thinking about how much easier life will be when Amy is three and we qualify for a mobility car.

We did have a wheelchair access van and are continuing to try and repair it.

I am not sure it's financially viable to keep repairing it, it is very old and unreliable but we can't afford a new one.

It has given me a taster of how much easier it is... disassembling a very heavy wheelchair and re-assembling every time we go out is becoming a very sore issue for my back.

I don't know who made the rule that the child must be three... I suppose someone who has never had to carry my child and feeding pump bag to a different road as parking is also so hard here - yes, even with a blue badge!

I remember last year thinking how much easier it would be when she starts nursery.

Now I am at that point - I wouldn't say it is easier, it is just different.

I am much calmer and happier now, as is she, but I don't think the arrival of nursery in our life was what did it.

So I guess my point is that these things are sort of arbitrary. It's not about when the holiday is, or when you get the mobility car... it's more about the hardships you face and how you come through them.

It was a year ago today I had that first miscarriage and whilst I do feel very sad about it, I don't feel half as empty inside as I did that day.

Things will get better, they always do.

Don't spend your life waiting on the next thing you think will make it easier or better... enjoy the little things.

It's the little things like that in life... things that remind you that there is good out there and that people care, and knowing that your child has a world of people who want to make things as inclusive as possible, that make my day.

It is the reminder every night when I walk past my daughter's room when she is fast asleep in bed that I am so thankful she is here and in my life.

Yes I do want that second child, no I don't want that operation, but for now I am trying to just focus on those little things and eventually it should all just fall into place.

Keep plodding on everyone, life is cruel at times, but don't get consumed by it or you will miss its beauty.


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