Today I met my daughter… (again)

In the early afternoon sun a little girl appeared from nowhere at the front of my stall. She had pale porcelain like skin with long auburn hair in soft curls. She didn’t say anything for a while until I said ‘Hello, how are you?’ she carried on looking at me and also said ‘hello’ in a very confident voice. She was studying me and then she took me by surprise by saying, ‘You look like me’ and I had to agree that I did.

I said yes, we do look alike we have the same colour hair and mine is curly too. I told her that my hair looked just like hers when I was her age though not as long. She neither smiled nor saddened in fact she didn’t change her expression at all. I was surprised no-one was with her and she stayed for a while longer looking at my kits and cushions until, eventually, a harassed mum came purposely over to the stall and caught up the little girls hand. After a mixture of anxiety and anger was expressed she looked a little embarrassed at me and then went to walk away. The little girl turned as she was being pulled and smiled and I said goodbye…

This isn’t the first time I’ve met my daughter Hubbie and I were in a local café that’s very popular with all ages. It’s a busy noisy place but one you can snuggle in the corner with a decafe tea and a book and stay as long as you like. They don’t know your name but do know your face and the smile I get as I walk in always makes me feel welcome. Hubbie and I had just enjoyed a deliciously naughty child free lunch together where we actually got to have a conversation, finish a hot meal and, most importantly of all, look into each other’s eyes again. His eyes are gorgeous though different from when we first met as I can now see our son’s eyes as I look into them a change that adds and doesn’t detract. We were queuing to pay for our meal and debating with the owner the merits of teapig teas; Hubbie likes awful smelling and (in my opinion) equally awfully tasting teas. The fouler the better it seems. A tea called ‘Yerba Mate’ was settled on due to it supposed weight loss properties and as the owner made another joke we both looked at the young girl standing on front of us. I looked at her gorgeous leather satchel, her fitted woollen coat with a handmade flower brooch but what really caught my attention and Hubbie’s was her hair, long, curly and auburn. Hubbie was the first to whisper ‘She looks just like you’ As the final change was given to the note handed over I thought that too and she did look like me but many years younger. She turned, smiled at us and left and I know I will never see her again.

I lost a baby at 14 weeks and I’ve always said that was my daughter. Of course I’ll never really know but to me I lost my daughter. She would have been a late Spring/early summer baby being born in May and would have had a brother waiting for her already. As it was the brother didn’t get the sister but 2 further brothers and nothing was ever really said about the missing one of us. That’s the thing with lost babies, no-one really talks about them after the initial loss. I understand they don’t want to upset but I still remember.

My daughter would have been the one that looked like me I’m sure. My sons have aspects of both Hubbie and I but I feel they most look like Hubbie at times. My daughter would have had my pale skin, my short size and, most of all, my auburn hair that would glint gold in the early summer’s sun on a late afternoon village fair. I know her name but I never got to whisper it to her as she slept in her cot.

I know I’ll meet her again though I don’t know when. Maybe I’ll see her as an older woman, older than me now but I know I’ll recognise her and I know she will me. Her hair may not be auburn but her eyes will be bright and by seeing her again I know that wherever she is she really is fine but just waiting for the time that she and I will meet after the final journey that awaits us all. I will take her in my arms and whisper her name and know that she is lost no more as eternity stretches out before us. Lost babies find their way home to open mothers’ arms that I am certain about.

I love my sons. I love them fiercely and passionately but I’ve always felt that one of us is missing. When I call them in from the garden ‘Ollie, Henny, Tobes, …..’ in that sing song way all parents call their children I feel the space of where our missing one should be. I’m torn between feeling we should have a number 4 but then think am I just missing the one that should have been? How do I ever work this one out? Some questions in life I suppose you just have to accept that there isn’t an answer.

I think I’ll see my daughter again but this time if I find her in the afternoon’s light of a summer’s day I’ll look at her, smile and just before she turns to walk away I’ll whisper…

‘… goodbye.’

But I need to mean it this time.

Picture found on


About littlewhitecottage

Emma is a qualified teacher with 14 years of teaching in many different settings. From teaching adults and children at a music school to choosing to work in a demanding primary school that was failing (which meant moving from an outstanding school – her colleagues were aghast!) to running her own sewing business for the last 5 ½ years teaching all ages how to sew: Emma loves to teach.
This entry was posted in Family, Read about me, The random thoughts of me and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Today I met my daughter… (again)

  1. Trudi says:

    Emma, we lost a baby too when Joshua was 19 months old. I didn’t know I was pregnant and one day started to suffer tummy pains. I didn’t know what they were and the pain was excruciating. Eventually Sean persuaded me to go to a and e and was discovered I was not only pregnant but was in the middle of ruptured ectopic pregnancy. I was operated on and my life was saved but I lost a Fallopian tube and have never been able to get pregnant since…. Not for the want of trying! I also often think of our lost baby and look at milestones such as the day they would have started school… I don’t picture what they would look like as that would be way too hard. But I do miss that baby, I hate the fact that Joshua doesn’t have a brother or a sister, that he is destined to be an only child.

  2. Wendy says:

    I cant really say alot cos I am chocked. What a lovely blog you shared with us. Thankyou Emma XX

  3. Wendy says:

    No, Im not chocked Im choked!!!

  4. Nikki says:

    We too lost a baby, when our daughter was 15 months an I was breast feeding AND on the pill!
    We’d had scares with our daughter (1 in 11 chance of downs) so when they said the nuchal fold at the back of the babies neck was enlarged we weren’t too worried, blood tests came back 1in 1600 an a further scan at 15 weeks said everything was fine, my anomaly scan was at 20 weeks an 6 days an the sonographer was taking an awful long time an I just knew there was a problem so I asked her what, it turned out our baby had hyper plastic left heart syndrome, mytral atresia an a hole and a missing valve, the term used was “incompatable with life” I was told he might not survive labour an would then need at least 4 major operations before school age, each op was risky, open heart, an on bypass. We agonised over the decision not to carry in with the pregnancy an I was induced at 21 weeks an 6 days.
    At 5am On the 18th July 2010 after labouring all night I gave birth to a tiny but perfectly formed baby boy, he never took a breath, he never cried an we left the hospital empty handed except for a few gruesome pictures and his tiny hand and footprints.
    Friends didn’t kno what to say to us an distanced themselves, me and my hubby didn’t talk, didn’t grieve properly an it nearly drove us apart. 2 years we’re stronger but we’ll never forget our first born son, every anniversary, my due date, all the missed milestones, we remember them all. ❤

  5. I love your blog and tissues most definitely were required for this installment. I lost a baby, a lot earlier than 14 weeks, and it was under very different circumstances than yours (I am almost certain without needing to detail them). I was broken and I decided then and there that I wouldn’t have children. I have many reasons for this, and it wasn’t knee-jerk. I am happy with my decision and I stand by it. Not only this but I don’t talk about it. Ever. My family don’t know, because I hadn’t told anyone yet, I haven’t told my partner and I don’t know why.

    A couple of weeks ago I went to my friend’s annual summer party, held every year on the day that would have been her second son’s birthday. She carried him to term and lost him right at the very end. I was a little weirded out before attending, not knowing what to expect of the day but found it a wonderful and lovely party celebrating him, what she had, what he would have been and what he still is in many respects. She talks about him like he is a part of the family, gone, never forgotten and like they will be united again. Her eldest talks about his brother, knows about him and tells everyone about his brother in heaven.

    Two very distinct ways of dealing with a loss.

    I think it is wonderful that you have shared this so very personal aspect of your life with your readers and I respect and cherish the fact that you can do what I cannot.

    All my love and best wishes xxxx

  6. Aunty Mogg says:

    I too lost a baby in the early stages of pregnancy and unfortunately have not been able to fall again… That was 18 years ago…. I have deliberately not thought or dwelt on that lost little one as I have had a hard time coping with never being able to have another chance at motherhood! I put all my energy into my work, renovating our house and my only niece on my side of the family! My niece Lucy and her mum, my only sibling, had a tough life, my sister was a single mum who devoted her every waking and sleeping thought to Lucy! Lucy filled the aching void in my life and over the years she had become my husband and my daughter-niece! She knew no matter what Aunty Mogg and UJ (uncle Jeffrey) would always be there for her… So was so so much more than just a niece!!!

    On March 27 2011, at sometime around midnight, my sister rang with that heartbreaking news – Lucy was having an asthma attack, the ambo was trying to revive her…. I cried that night and felt my heart break in two! My Lucy died that night!

    A few months later my sister and I found a medium (my sister needed an answer & over the years we’ve both begun to believe in a spirit world) this was our test – could this medium really talk to our Lucy! I believe she did although her ‘reading’ was ‘aggressive’ but she said one thing to my sister that she then affirmed with me!

    When Lucy was ready to leave she was ‘guided’ by a young female! The medium then said to me that my daughter whom I never got to meet is with Lucy!

    I have never looked or imagined my lost baby, I have never even thought about the sex of my baby but after losing Lucy, and hearing that my lost baby is with Lucy, has given my comfort – even tho I doubted most of what that medium said – something deep inside me knows Lucy and my baby are together and that one day when my time is over Lucy will be waiting and I’ll meet my baby!

  7. andrea says:

    i love your blogs, i think you are a beautiful writer. My youngest daughter shown me your wall as she does craft work to. She has lost 3 babies 1 son at around 6months then had 2 healthy sons she lost her daughter full term, No one teally knows why. she had another healthy son, then lost another son at around 5 months, then 9 months later had her last healthy son, She was devastated by each loss. At Xmas they buy 3 balloons n let them go Xmas morning. she has now got 4 handsome healthy sons, we love them all, but will never forget the ones she lost. My eldest daughter also lost her second son he was very poorly when born full term, but a beautiful big baby of nearly 11 pounds. .He was starved of Oxygen at birth n had severe cerebral palsy and was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis at 6 months he couldn’t feed he had a twisted windpipe so was fed by tube to his tummy.. A wonderful happy little lad couldn’t sit up or lift his head or move about, but when you walked in the room n called his name he had the biggest smile on his dear face, he always knew who you were. He was in n out of hospital most of his young life, n i feel it was a blessing when he died at 2 years n 3 months on St. Patricks day.He is at peace at last. He would have been 14 now, n have 3 lovely sisters. i like to think he is running around with his cousins n my husband who died 5 years ago Pain free at last.I miss you all, I was blessed with 4 healthy children n still can not imagine what my daughters went through… i loved each n every one of them The 8 that are here and the 4 that were lost…love n good wishes xx

  8. Lane aka Willowlane Designs says:

    I wish so much that so many of us didn’t belong to the crappiest club in the world, the one no-one wants to be a member of but no-one gets to choose. I am a mother to 6 children, three of which i never got to take home and one i never got to even meet. 5 of those children are boys and the one we lost so early but i think of that baby as a little girl. I guess we will always wonder but i truly believe we will all get to hold our angels in our arms one day.

  9. Helen Benson says:

    I am so pleased I found your blog through your FB page.Today is the first time I have started reading your wonderful blog & here I am with a huge lump in my throat & a desire to hug all of you who have suffered so much.Being a mother is the greatest gift & its easy to assume everything will go well with a perfect cherished bundle to wrap our arms around & take back home.I am blessed & have two healthy grown up sons now.My youngest, now 25 had a wobbly start in life & spent 2 weeks in SCBU at our local hospital but thankfully did well & came home safely.I still think how lucky I am & give thanks.Reading your stories has touched my heart so much though.My thoughts & prayers are with you all & thankyou for sharing so much.I am looking forward to being part of the fellowship of Little White cottage as it feels a lovely place to be,God bless xxhugsxx

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