Hasn’t this been a lovely period of absence?
I mean 2020, nothing happened right? Not like we all wished for the year to be as over as quick as it started. I know I did. I don’t think I have ever pleaded with a clock to go forward before, turn back time yes but not to fast forward. I should probably state that I’m okay. I haven’t been taken away and used for my incredible writing skills in case you were wondering that. I just needed a break. I had a lot going on, I still do, I’m just making sense of it all now. I’m making sense of how shit your life can turn in 30 seconds and I’m making sense of who I am as a person. Give it a week and that will change. I’ll want to be an actress or nude live model for artists. The latter has a 0% chance of ever happening. Unless you’re offering me £1m? We are all here, reading this here because at some point in our lives it all went crap. You could also be here to get kicks out of people’s lives that are not going particularly to plan. ( I am currently being pulled off the bed by a toddler). I guess you could also be here for the fact that you want to educate yourselves and ourselves on how to be more understanding and compassionate people because let us face, it the world needs souls like you to help make it better. To help make it worth it.
Since the beginning of 2020 how many of us have thought about throwing in the towel? quitting our jobs? changing location? Breaking down a relationship? How many of us have also come to realise that we have taken for granted everything that was okay before because now we can do nothing. we can no longer support our loved ones face to face, we can not go see our loved ones in the hospital or even go for a meal out with our partners to escape for the night. without social connections and feeling another person present in the same room as you is lonely. Also when you are stuck in the same house/flat/room as someone that can also be infuriating and in a way isolating too. 2020 for many of us has been awful but lets not also forget how much we have learnt from his time. New hobbies, businesses, friendships, being grateful for the NHS, learning new languages and becoming teachers in our lounges. We have built and found strong communities and found new parts of woodlands that we have never explored. we have overeaten banana bread, shouted at strangers out loud when they are in our personal space and instead of a collection of lipsticks I now have an array of masks. Who would have thought? I mean ask me in 2019 if I thought that would be a staple accessory and I would have said no. I mean who honestly would have thought?
To everyone on my social media and in real life you probably noticed a lack of presence of Phil and I. it is also probably the most asked question I get. Everyone loves a happy and dreamy relationship and what we portray on social media isn’t always the case. whether that be as a whole or just one of you. I was particularly naive of this and I have always promised to be open, transparent and make myself vulnerable so people can relate to me and my life. I guess I might have done that too much and put myself in a position where people could get easily jealous by the fact that I have a lot of support/people who care about me. I made my relations vulnerable by gloating how happy we were when in honesty I truly believed we were. I was happy and I know Phil was too.
When your child dies a lot of the support is aimed at mums, which leaves dads in a crisis, deep in grief and nowhere to let it out it can build up. Then add on top of that Phil felt unsupported by certain people and relied on me a lot which of course I was happy to support him because I love him. River’s pregnancy wasn’t emotionally easy, it was stressful and there was poor Phil bottling up all that again to keep me going. River’s birth and him being taken to TMBU brought back a lot of pain as we couldn’t have him with us and the idea of going home without another baby was hard to digest. Then comes moving in with your in-laws which also has its stresses (Mum and dad we love you). Covid-19 hit him like a ton of bricks when he had to furlough people, make tough decisions and work on pretty much any day off he had and he still does. I can see now that I was blind to how much he was struggling and I could have done more.
Other than this I’m not going to go much into the detail of what happened and why our marriage ended for a while. We grew as people, as a family but I didn’t realise how much everything had changed us. To say I was utterly heartbroken would be an understatement. For the first time, even after Dexy dying and all these years together, I realised just how deeply I was in love with him. Covid-19 was a tough time as it was with being furloughed and less income I stressed about how he would find somewhere and how we would work co-parenting out with a lockdown, different circles and bringing the potential risk of covid home. So the kind person I am I made him sleep on my sofa haha. As you can imagine being in lockdown together, both heartbroken (me more so haha) and nowhere to escape to it probably, in fact, showed us how much we wanted to be together. Seeing him every morning when I came downstairs, seeing him with River, I needed that. When we spoke on one of our long walks of silence, it became clear. He needed me more than I needed him for once. He needed to be the one to crumble and hide. I needed to hold him, needed to be everything he has been to me. We agreed to get him some support. Once and only when he was feeling mentally strong we would talk about us. Over time we started what I would say only felt like dating again. Marriage is never easy and a straight path.
Over time, a lot of apologising and sorting out everything we agreed to work towards getting ourselves back. I could have called it a day permanently and to be honest, it goes pretty close to that point but it just really highlighted how much he means to me, us, how much our family means to us both. Back to the sort of the beginning of this, I now keep my relationship very private. I just needed to air this because I don’t want people assuming anything or speculating. Just know we are together, working on us, in love and very much happy together.
During lockdown and to find something to focus on I started making cards and gift tags. Something is calming about it. It almost became a part of my therapy, I’ll tell you, putting them out there for people to buy is terrifying. I felt like I was being judged secretly behind the screens even though no one has said anything other than praise for them. I know, I know, I am highly self-critical. If you wanted to check them out (subtle slip) it is @thesimplecardsstore on insta and facebook or www.etsy.com/uk/shop/thesimplecardsstore .
I also have been putting my “free” time into is writing a book. Not just any book, a poetry book (It’s spoken word actually haha) all about the shit storm of your child dying. Lines of me ranting about how careless people are, how much I hate the fact my son died and that I am angry over it. This blog in short then? I just don’t know who would be interested in reading it, how to publish it or what I do with it now. If anyone has any contacts or directions to point me in that would be appreciated, highly. I’ve been furloughed for the third time I have not one excuse now not pursue this.
I tell you what I also can’t get my head around? Dexy is three. What. The. Fuck. How has it been three years since I first saw his cute face and held him in my arms? How has it been three years since I started this hard new life? This year celebrating, of course, harder and different due to being amid a national lockdown and pandemic. I’m just glad I got to spend it with Phil and River. We normally have a little tea party and last year we had a family day out for it. This year, however, we brought the party to my living room floor the night before by making 13 fairy doors to place in the woods over the road. Let me tell you something… Glueing wooden coffee stirrers together at 10 pm after a two-year-old has been running circles around you and you’re dealing with all the emotions of another birthday without your son here it is bloody hard. As I am a super mum, after all, I managed it and I have some stirrers spare for a rainy day. win on both parts I think.
We did a little fairy door walk for all the children where we live to give them something to smile and find exciting.
Afterall lockdowns are now part of our normal every day lives and no one wants another boring daily walk so give people something to smile at. whether they are four, ten or 80. Knowing they are going to smile over something you have done in remembrance of your son means something. He means something and that is all I ever want. I put it on our local residence page and people added photos in the comments when they found and it made the day a little easier. We also had a chocolate cake which I may or may not have covered in edible glitter, the cake and my whole kitchen. River, however, was incredibly happy for cake. When I told him to wish Dexy a happy birthday he turned around with the most serious of faces saying “Baby birthday cake?) so the kid has his priorities the right way round- haha.
What I hope for in 2021? I’ll jot down a little list for you:
- To hug my family.
- For my family and myself to stay healthy and happy.
- River to be able to use his balance bike. (We are trying.)
- To annoy my sister in person.
- To see my friends.
- Publish my book.
- My little card business to take off.
- To bombard people with numerous blogs.
Not much right?
I hope you all are safe, well, keeping positive and wishing for a better 2021. We’ve got this babes ❤
I’m back and this time I promise to stay.
I’ve opened a Kofi account where you can voluntarily donate the price of a coffee to support my blog and myself: https://ko-fi.com/hannahpontillo
Thank you ❤