I was 40 weeks and 2 days pregnant and the beach whale waddle was well perfected!
I was very lucky , one of them who enjoyed being pregnant, this pregnancy and my pregnancy with Gracie were smooth, uncomplicated and enjoyable I was blissfully happy during them both!
The morning of Monday 26th September 2016 started like any morning, Gracie had climbed into bed in the early hours, Ashley had gone off to work, Gracie and I cuddled a while in bed , (these are memories I will treasure forever cuddles with both of my babies) but while I lay I though I hadn't felt any movement so far this morning, I phoned the midwife who said to come up and get checked, so I let Ashley know and while I got Gracie and myself dressed Ashley headed home from work to head up to the hospital together,
The journey there we chatted and said baby was just hiding, or Maybe baby was sleepy, Once your past 12 weeks your safe aren't you?! This was it, the start, we had our hospital bag with us and we will be leaving the hospital with our baby,
Arriving at hospital the midwife showed me a bed to lie on and said she would just have a listen with the Doppler, she searched a while and went to get another midwife in, as they both listened, they picked up a fast heartbeat, me and Ashley breathed a sigh of relief but the midwife held my wrist and continued to search, it was my heartbeat they had found, another midwife then came in... why did I have three midwives looking after me? But we thought with Gracie, the midwives always had to chase her, I could never be strapped to a monitor as she was always on the move,so another cheeky baby sounded about right!
After a while of searching they sent us through for an ultrasound scan, I laid down on the bed and Ashley and Gracie sat on the chairs next to me, The lady put the gel on my tummy and put the wand around my belly while staring at the screen, I was trying to read her face,
after a few minutes she turned to me and said "I'm sorry there is no heartbeat", I can remember hearing the sound that escaped from my mouth and the crushing pain that hit, I can remember Ashley asking if she was absolutely sure and if she needed someone else to check, and that's the moment our lives changed forever.
We were then taken to the consultants room and left for a while to try to understand what we had just been told, we phoned our parents to tell them and they came straight to the hospital to offer their support and to help look after Gracie,the consultant recomended a cesearean section which was planned for later on that day.
We were taken to a room at the Water Lily suite at QEH hospital Kings Lynn and during the afternoon we had a range of professionals come to discuss various things and prepare us for the operation,
When it was time Our lovely midwife Sharon who was there all along with us since we got to hospital came to take us to theatre and our parents waited in the room for us to bring our baby boy or baby girl back to meet them,
Arriving in theatre everyone was so lovely, calming and kind, this was a new experience for a lot of them too, as most stillborn babies are delivered naturally, although some were upset they remained totally professional, they had put on a lovely CD and made us feel very relaxed, As Beautiful by Christina Aguilara played our beautiful baby was born,
Like with Gracie when they were ready they held our baby up and Ashley was able to tell me if we had a boy or girl " We have another little girl" we had lots of happy tears and as they finished operating on me, Sharon and Ashley took Summer over to the scales, she was exactly the same as Gracie 9lb, and strangely her head circumference was exactly the same too, they were the absolute double of each other , though Summer was a little taller and had a little more hair, but they were both the same absolute beautiful , perfect little girls.
Over the next few hours Summer was introduced to her big sister, nannys, grandads, uncles , aunties, and our closest friends who all surrounded her with lots of love and gave her lots of cuddles and kisses,
We were so lucky to have been able to use the cuddle cot in the hospital, this allowed us more time with Summer and we got to spend the night with her too,
We spent time making memories taking photos and prints of her hands and feet and a wisp of her beautiful dark hair to cherish forever,
When it came to thinking about leaving the hospital I didn't want to go, I wanted to grab Summer and run so we were all together, but I knew that wouldn't be fair, she was made for bigger things, and I have to trust we will be together again with her one day, I tucked her up in her blankets and surrounded her with her teddies and the midwives promised me they would look after her,
When it came to me leaving the hospital I sat in a wheelchair with a indescribable amount of pain from my operation but mainly in my heart, I had the memory box sat proudly on my lap as i was wheeled to the car.
Summer had her post portem at addembrookes who confirmed to us what we already knew, she was perfect , We visited her while she was there in Cambridg, she then came back to Thornallys in Kings Lynn where we visited her lots too and made her funeral arrangements, while she was there Theresa from Theresa's Tiny Treasures visited and made some amazing precious keepsakes we will treasure forever,
Summers funeral was Thursday 20th October, the hearse pulled into our drive which was lovely, although she's with us wherever we live and go, it was nice for her funeral service to start with her coming home, we had pink and white flowers and we had pink and white roses that everyone who attended laid on her beautiful little white coffin, we had some of her special songs during the service, beautiful - the song which played when we first laid eyes on our beautiful girl and You are the sunshine of my life - the words of this are perfect.
After the service we had everyone back to ours for food and drinks and later in the evening , me, Ashley and Gracie drove down and watched the river, a perfect end to a special day,
People ask where we got the name Summer from, it was Ashley's idea, it's a name that cannot be said sadly, it's a name full of warmth and beauty, a summer that could not stay , but will be with us forever, no amount of time or distance could ever change that, she is not a sad story, her name is to not be silenced, she will forever be our second baby, she is ours and we are hers forever and always, her proud mummy and daddy and big sister Gracie love her for eternity, and we always will and I'd do it all over again just to see her face.