Capture Your Grief 2014 Ashleigh

Capture Your Grief 2014 - In Memory of Luka Pixie

Day One ~ Sunrise x
We didnt have a very mind blowing sunrise here, well not that I stood in the cold waiting for anyway! You're still the warmth in our sun little Luka, and the sun in our sky x

Day Two ~ Heart x
My babies as close as I get to having all four pieces of my heart together

Day Three ~ Before x
This is Before. The day before. 29 hours Before. When things were good. When my babies had only lived. When dead babies and broken dreams only happened to other people, in other worlds, far far away. When I was too busy complaining about fat feet and heartburn to enjoy every precious movement she made. Id do anything to go back to Before x

Day Four ~ Now x
Me now. Right now (lol). Nearly twenty-two months since Luka. Everything is different ~ changed. Emotions are different, reactions are different, attitudes are different. It is extremely hard to accept, this change, when change isnt what you wanted x Its frustrating. And annoying. And irrational at times. But ~ with change comes new paths, new opportunities, new beginnings Everything now is seen with fresh eyes. Everything means something. Everything is different.

Day Five ~ Journal x
Luka's journal I use it to keep her Christmas and birthday notices all together. And I use it to tell her what she would have got for her birthday and Christmas x For her first Christmas, where she should have been two weeks old, she got a pillow-pet and a Mary-Lou doll ~ we had these already, anticipating the fact that she would probably be here, being due on Boxing Day! These will go back under the tree with fresh wrapping every year, and then every year go back into my wardrobe x

Day Six ~ Book x
This is Luka's book ... it is one of many I made after her birth. I would spend hours, making photobooks, making slideshows, making photo magnets ~ remembering, loving, and mourning my Forever baby I am somewhat immune to the books I made, but even on a good day they still bring tears to my eyes. I still cant really believe it, my baby died. Mine. My baby. She really died. This is part of what I do to keep her alive X

Day Seven ~ Sacred Place x
My Sacred Place is Luka's Spot x Luka is not there yet, she is still at home with us, but we use her Spot to 'look after' her I guess. We go regularly and trim the grass, change the decorations, and wipe her perfect wee face (which you cant see because its behind the flower ). We light her candles and blow them out and the smoke carries a kiss and a 'hello' to her. We decorate it for the holidays ~ hearts for Valentines Day, a four-leafed clover for St Pattys Day, something spooky for Halloween, and her very own Christmas tree for Christmas. Its Luka's Spot x

Day Eight ~ Resource x
These are the pamphlets I was given in the hospital. I have to admit they were no help or consolation to me at the time. But Ive kept them. One more memory for her box x

Day Nine ~ In Memory x
This year, we have plans... Luka's grandma, aunty and I ~ we are putting together some care kits for our birthing unit. Kits that will contain some of the things I find invaluable now, but didnt realise I needed at the time. Some things to help newly bereaved parents make everlasting memories x we are hoping to deliver them on her birthday x Memory packages, in memory of Luka x

Day Ten ~ Support x The support we have had since Luka has been nothing short of fantastic x it has been nothing but positive, and has let us remember Luka and love Luka and be parents to Luka the only way we can x We are eternally grateful to everyone who has been a part of this with us, and helped us make it this far (so far) without our wee girl Support makes all the difference and comes in the form of faces, words, actions, even thoughts. Nothing warms my heart more than someone telling me they thought of my Luka for some reason or another This helps me feel that Im not doing it wrong x and that I can keep going and that she means something, not just to me but to the world x
* some of my support crew *

Day Eleven ~ Altar x
Altar. Im kind of stuck on this one, as altar conjures up thoughts of witches and rituals (lol)... but it also makes me think of shrines and places or worship ~ this is Luka's Shrine, her Place of Worship. This shelf contains her complete existance, bar a few photos on the wall, and her actual self, in her seahorse in my bed x This is everything x This is her x I have to admit, Ive slowed down with 'buying it for Luka's shelf' but also have to admit I'm *this* close to buying a second shelf for her lol

Day Twelve ~ Music x
I know, this is the photo I used last year, but I dont have new ones x Daddys drums ~ daddys drums are packed away now, like they were meant to be but didnt end up needing to be when Luka was born. Now, Ever's cot is in the drums spot, like Luka's was supposed to be x When I think about it, I'm not sure Luka's daddy has even played his drums since this photo was taken. Sweetest Dreams Luka, forever Daddy's Little Drummer Girl number 1

Day Thirteen ~ Season x
 Luka was born at the beginning of Summer 2012. There were no impromptu bbq's with friends or lazy Sunday beers that Summer. Most of that Summer was spent inside, hiding from the world and the sun ~ the world that kept turning, and the sun that kept shining. Our sun had just crashed right into our world and blown it to a million pieces. Luka's baby sister Ever was born at the beginning of Summer 2013. The sun has started shining for us again Today is twenty-two months 'since Luka'. I still wish every day that she was here x

Day Fourteen ~ Dark / Light x I am struggling to find the right words for today... Birth is Light. New life, new dreams, new emotions. It is anticipation of things to come. When birth brings death, it becomes Dark. Dark and scary. It taints everything, forever after. It is shattered dreams, irrational emotions. It is still new life, just a different aspect. Sometimes, dark and light co-exist x ~ Luka and her daddy ~ you may be his darkness little girl, but you're also his light

Day Fifteen ~ Community x
I am in my second year without Luka, and I guess with time comes acceptance. I am part of the Baby Loss Community, whether I want to be or not. I am beginning to accept that it is what it is, and that it cannot be changed x And I am beginning to feel like a 'part' of that community. There are no questions, there is no judgement. There are just families with something in common, families with 'someone missing'. Families who celebrate with tears as well as smiles, and who find comfort in balloons and rainbows x

Day Sixteen ~ Retreat x
Luka's death was a huge shock ~ she wasnt supposed to die. We had an emergency caesarean, these save babies. She had a heartbeat, she was alive. Then she died. It shocked everyone. I went into an instant hazy nightmare, where I had to do things I didnt want to do, and see things I didnt want to see, and feel things I didnt want to feel. I believe the haze kicked in to protect me. But it also made my time with her blurry. Numb. Initially, my mind was my hell. It contained all of my dark thoughts, all of my broken heart, all of my horrible memories. I would close my eyes and hear the Dr telling me he was sorry. I would close my eyes and feel her cold cheeks. I would close my eyes and remember my body, reacting as it was supposed to after 'giving' birth, but with no hungry baby to feed.

Now, most days, my mind is my retreat. Where I can go and see her again. Feel her. smell her. I can close my eyes and remember her fuzzy little head. I can close my eyes and remember the weight of her perfect sleeping body. I can close my eyes and see everyone who loved us, and her, surround us ~ carry us through our darkest days. I can close my eyes and have my baby back x

Day Seventeen ~ Explore x
I've been thinking all day today about where I am right now, in life 'after Luka'. I think I'm ok x I've been sad, I've been scared, I've been angry, I've been anxious, I've been paranoid, I've been confused.

Sometimes all in one day, sometimes all at one time. Right now, I am still sad, but it's a different sad ~ a deep neverending sad, but I can contain it. I'm still scared, anxious, and paranoid, but I've picked up strategies and skills to live with these feelings. I am still angry, but it's nondescript anger ~ I can't explain it, it is just there, it's not fair. And I'm still confused ~ why me, why us, why her, why anyone?! But, ultimately, I am ok. I miss my baby. But I am accepting that I always will. I think Peace is coming I am ok x

Day Eighteen ~ Gratitude x
I am forever grateful for the time we had with Luka, after she died. We held her, we took a million photos, we made memories. We got time, although not enough, to imprison her in our minds and hearts. We got a chance to immortalise her x I am also grateful, more than I can ever express, for the support we both had and still have.

We have been 'allowed' to miss her, to want her, to remember her. We have been able to love her and celebrate her, the only way we can. We have included her in our lives, as we should have x I am mostly grateful for my babies all four of them ~ Maya, Jakob, Luka, and Ever x it really is true, you don't know what you have got til it's gone, and while I have always loved my kids, its taken Luka to really truly deeply appreciate them for the miracles they are x love my babies x

Day Nineteen ~ Give x
This year, for the Random Act of Kindness Day in memory of the babies gone too soon, we delivered cakes. It was nothing much, a small gesture of thanks to some of the professionals that were involved. It was just a little something that hopefully sweetened up some peoples day. I'm not a very upfront person, so I kind of fumbled through explaining what it was for ~ hopefully next year is a little easier! In loving memory of Luka x

Day Twenty ~ Breathe x
Thoughts are with Axel and his family tonight x Luka's candle is lit, and when we blow it out we blow it with the breath of love, so it will carry a kiss to wee Axel (and Luka of course) Shine Bright sweet babies x

Day Twenty-One ~ Relationships x
Life since Luka has been hard, in a million ways. She rocked our world, so hard that we almost fell off. It tore us apart and jammed us together, all at once. Sometimes, Ive wondered how we can ever get through this, its all too hard, its not fair, we will never be happy, why us, we are not strong enough. But then I look at this picture This is Luka's daddy, with her little sister Ever, on her birthday. His pride and elation is evident and he oozes with pure love. It reminds me that we can do this, that we have done it so far, and that we will forever be the only understanders of each other x Together, we are strong enough x

Day Twenty-Two ~ Self-Care x

For some reason I have spent a lot of today thinking about how my baby girl would be nearly two.  I wonder what she would look like. I wonder if she would be talking much.  I wonder how much hair she would have, and what colour her eyes would be. It is emotionally tiring.
My self-care tonight consists of chocolate. Maybe a row, maybe the whole block x

Day Twenty-Three ~ Inspiration x
This is Luka Pixie Morris. Unedited. In colour. Real. My every thought now is shaped by her. She is where my mind wanders to when it is not busy. She guides my everything, both good and bad, both happy and sad, both relaxed and mad. She is my inspiration.

Day Twenty-Four ~ Forgiveness x I am lucky in the sense that I can accept Luka's death for what it was ~ as the obstetrician said, one of the tragedies of obstetrics. It was no ones fault. No one ignored anything, or moved too slow, or made the wrong call. I hold no grudges. I was once asked if I was mad at Luka, for dying. My instant reaction was no! How could I be mad at my sweet baby? But then, maybe I was. Mad that she died.

Mad that we werent good enough. Mad that she 'picked' us, when we didnt want this. Mad that our families had to carry this pain with us. Mad that she couldnt stay x Forgive me, sweet Luka, for even thinking these thoughts I wish you were here, more than anything in the world x

Day Twenty-Five ~ Mother Earth x
New addition to Luka's potted garden ~ Summer Angel x

Day Twenty-Six ~ Healing Ritual x
We light candles for Luka. Candles are distracting. Mesmerising. Soothing x Until you blow them out. Theres something a little sad about blowing out a candle ~ extinguishing that little dancing flame. Ending its brief existence. It was, and then it wasn't. So now we 'light our candles with Love' and when we blow them out they carry a 'hello' and a kiss to Luka, where ever she may be x

Day Twenty-Seven ~ Express x I will try to express myself, try to give a small insight into what living after your baby dies is like. If I am completely honest, it sucks. It is a constant and continuous ache, in your mind, heart, and soul ~ something is missing. Something will always be missing. And the only sure thing is that you know it will never change.

Its wanting something you can never have, ever. Its wishing things were different, every single day. Its actually like living one of those 'pick-a-path' books, where in your mind you go back a million times to try and see where you could've changed things, but it always leads you to the same stupid ending. Its tiring, but its a tiredness no sleep will ease. Its grasping at fading memories, clinging to anything that reminds you and the world that you had a baby, and that baby mattered. It is the yearning to see what your little person would be growing into x Sweet dreams wee Luka, wish you were here x

Day Twenty-Eight ~ Wisdom x
I have no words of wisdom, except to celebrate life x I will NEVER forget seeing our funeral director carrying Luka's little white casket across the lawn to bring inside, to sit in my lounge. It was possibly the moment that it really hit me ~ my baby really was dead and that was her casket, small enough to be carried by one man. We were encouraged to have it at home, even though we didnt put her in it, so all the kids could decorate it, and everyone could send a bit of their love off with her. So they decorated it. The laughed and joked, and spent hours putting stickers on it and writing on it. As odd as it is, it is a happy memory x We normalised death. We made Luka's funeral a pretty occasion x We celebrated her brief life x As devastated as we were, we managed to celebrate her

Day Twenty-Nine ~ Reflect x This past month has been harder than I was expecting. Last year, my grief was brand new, and I was pregnant again. I knew each days subject a week in advance, and my emotions flowed freely. I was sad, scared, overwhelmed, numb. I had nothing to think about except Luka, and my baby-to-be. One year on and the change in my head is massive. I have distractions. My sadness has settled a bit.

My tired (as in sleep-deprived!) mind wanders a lot and I find my thoughts are jumbled and off track. It has made me actively dig for thoughts and memories. It makes me wonder how the hell we survived it, how did we survive Luka dying? How does anyone survive this shit? It has made me realise that it is forever. That our grief is our love, and missing her is loving her, and remembering her is how we survive, and how we keep her alive x she is our forever baby x Sweetest Dreams Luka x

Day Thirty ~ Intention x
One of the things I complain about the most, apart from the obvious loss of Luka, is the loss of myself. I hate the person I have become ~ short tempered, easily upset, pessimistic. I dont like it. I used to be happy. I know Luka is gone, but where ever she is, she is happy, and I know she would want me to be happy too. Maya, Jakob, and Ever, they deserve a happy mum. I know I have to allow myself to be sad, but I also know I have to allow myself to be happy x “I intend to reclaim myself, in honour of my precious child Luka”

Day Thirty-One ~ Sunset x
I missed sunset tonight, we weren't home but while we were out I spooked up Luka's spot a bit for Halloween Love you lots little Luka x

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