"Edited to Add"....

This started as a pregnancy blog when I fell pregnant in May 2009 after four years of finding a donor, doing all the counselling / paperwork / tests and trying.

And now, thanks to a 4WD which skidded onto our side of the road, killing our baby daughter at 34w and injuring me, my partner and two of my stepdaughters on 27 December 2009, it has turned into something else. We didn't want this something else, but apparently it is all we've got to go on with.

Monday, April 16, 2012


There is a back corner of our garage where baby things accumulate.  It's where we hid away the little red suitcase of things we'd bought or been given for Zainab when it became clear she wasn't ever going to use them, along with the pram and carseat.  Over the last six months or so of this pregnancy it is where pre-loved baby things have washed up as dear friends have pressed them upon us.  Yesterday was a clear sunny day, impossibly warm for Autumn but a good washing day, so El Prima and I started our excavations.

We worked through boxes of baby clothes - washing and sorting them by size.  Tiny jumpsuits hung from our washing line like a cloud of white fluffy bats.  And we tried to imagine Adzuki's little feet - those little heels sliding regularly across the inside of my belly and giving El Prima well-timed kicks in the back - wearing some of these clothes.  It all feels quite unreal at this stage, but now that we've gotten past the same stage as our accident last time, some of the fear has lifted.  We're doing that crazy unbelievable thing - preparing for this baby to come home with us, and getting ready all the things we'll need to care for him as a living, breathing baby.  The part of my brain which tells me that I'm tempting fate, I'm hearing but not heeding.  Who knows what will happen, but I want to enjoy this bit of anticipation while we can.  

We started with the most recently stashed away things from friends, and then gradually dug deeper into the pile, finding the pram we'd bought second-hand for Zainab and pumping up the tyres, along with all the bits and pieces for it.  And finally we took a deep breath and turned to the little red suitcase.  I had imagined this as a little time capsule of all our hopes for Zainab - that we could open it, and while it might be sad, there might also be something bittersweet about her little brother wearing her hand-me-downs - a connection between the two.  I should have known from the weight of it that something was up, but the moment I unzipped it, we could smell what had happened - somehow water had got in and everything inside was mouldy and mildewy.  At first I just took a deep breath and started separating out the irretrievable things from the ones that might come good with a good soak, but as the extent of the damage became clear, we stopped and I wept.  That time, when we had felt Z kicking, and had bought these small things in anticipation - was well and truly gone - the new clothes we had bought then are no longer new but decaying.  The little gold sequined mardi gras shoes were still wrapped in plastic, so they smelt musty, but were mostly okay - the blue and orange overalls were so badly mildewed that the fabric fell apart as I pulled them out. The irretrievable things I packed back into the little red suitcase - it will have to go in the bin soon, but for now I needed some means of disposal that reflects the love and sadness we have for these mouldy little scraps and the baby who was supposed to wear them.

The other things, I soaked and washed and pegged out on the line - hoping that sunshine will help get rid of the smell, and that Adzuki won't mind if some of his clothes look slightly the worse for wear because they come from his sister.  Wednesday will be 36 weeks, so chances are, we'll be meeting him in the next month or so.  As scary as it is, we're putting faith in that thought.