If you follow me on Twitter and/or this blog you'll know this is a very difficult time of year for me. I've spent the last couple of days in tears and at the same time beating myself up over it.
Yesterday was particularly tough. The little one's birthday is bitter sweet for me. At the same time as enjoying her growing up, I was reminded of the missing person. Of Adam.
And instead of revelling in the celebration I was getting stressed and upset. I was trying not to be upset. But it just kept flooding me.
And it has today.
Adam was born on the 6th July, 2007.
Everything in the pregnancy was fine until 2 weeks before when a routine check gave the midwife enough concerns about my blood pressure to send me to hospital for tests. It went more and more wrong by the day until he was delivered by emergency C-Section on the day he turned 26 weeks.
So every year, in the 2 weeks before the 6th July, I sink more and more into a dark place.
Then for a few days after he was born it was totally touch and go. From the first moment the phrase used was "he's a very sick little boy", "the chances are not good". The first night we got called through to say goodbye. But he pulled through that.
I relive that time every year. Of sitting on my hospital bed with the hubby, sobbing that it wasn't fair and yet somehow, believing it was what I deserved.
But he fought his way through everything.
And so a week or so after he was born we had settled into a pattern of visiting him 3 times a day. Of hating the machine which showed his oxygen levels. Of watching them stick more and more tubes in him. But it was calm and settled. And some days we even believed he would pull through.
Then one of the tubes leaked. His veins were so small and there were so many tubes. And it was caustic and caused a huge burn on his arm. And that was one more thing he had to fight. One thing too many as it turned out.
And so about a week and a half before the final moment on the 5th August we began to lose hope. The doctors were talking to us about switching off his machines. Of it being kinder to do that. And we maintained, as we had always done, that as long as he wasn't suffering then we would not lose hope and we would try everything.
But it was clear it was the beginning of the end. And at this time every year I relive that sinking feeling.
That feeling that makes me start crying at random points through the day.
That feeling that makes it so hard for me to keep my head above water.
On the 3rd of August they said they should give him a steroid injection to give his lungs a chance to grow. But there was a risk...the steroids would stop cell production and his stomach lining might be too thin to cope.
Which is what happened. Regular xrays on the 4th of August showed his lungs weren't really recovering. And as I visited him late in the afternoon, he started writhing in agony and his oxygen levels started dropping.
Before I got home I had the phonecall to come back to the hospital with the hubby.
We travelled back in silence and tears.
Our worst fear had come true. He had developed a tear in his stomach. There was nothing they could do. He had fought everything and he just couldn't fight this.
He was suffering and we wouldn't let that happen.
So we had to make the decision. To dose him up on morphine and switch off his ventilator.
This was done in the early hours of the 5th August.
And then he was gone. My first child. My baby boy.
And so at this time every year I struggle so much as I re-live every moment and every feeling. Either consciously or subconsciously. Whichever, it's so tough.