My Heart, Your Home: A suitcase full of moments   

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

A suitcase full of moments

Image from here
Our lives are formed by moments, our persons are defined by moments.We each have a suitcase full of moments, of stories, that make us who we are, that have lead us to where we are, which influence the lives that we live. Some of these stories we share with others, to help us learn and grow from them and to perhaps inspire other people. Then there are some stories which we dont share, we dont talk about, we try not to think about. These are usually the moments that we are ashamed of, or the moments which inflict pain to reflect on. Perhaps these are the moments of our past that we fear our present will judge us on? Perhaps these past moments are ones that will change our future if we accept them? Or perhaps we are just scared.

My past is made of moments which I do not talk about, I don't share them with my present. I am not sure of the reason as there are many different reasons. Mostly, I think, because I am not meant to talk about them. Our society doesn't encourage these topics of conversation... taboo. Even though I don't talk about them, I think about them, daily. And today I have decided that my past shouldn't be taboo, it shouldn't be hidden away in the dark. It is what made me... me. Today I have decided that my Daughter needs to know about some of these moments, to show her that what decisions we make today can follow us through for decades to come.

This one particular life changing, life affirming moment, follows me through my life and if I ever dream of a day where I wont think about it, I am gently reminded by my surroundings. Somethings no matter how hard you to try to pretend didn't happen, will always be with you. 

Always with me is the ghost of what would now be a 10 year old child, a child I denied the right to life. A child that accidentally fell into my incapable life because of a moment of a young mind making a careless and reckless decision that soon had to be followed by a decision that was completely out of the depth of a 14 year old scared and fearful young girl.

Me, as a 14 year old girl, was someone so far removed from me as a 25 year old woman. I was an angry young girl, who was trying to be a mature woman. I was living life with an "i don't give a f**k" attitude. I was making decisions far beyond my years. I subjected myself to situations far older than what my young and naive mind was capable of approaching with maturity and sensibility. But I didn't care. I was having fun and enjoying my life the way that I wanted to do it. Not aware of how far those decisions can haunt you, not aware of the pain I was inflicting on the future me, not caring about my own sense of self and well being.

I had surrounded myself with people who made me feel loved, made me feel special and unique and made me feel like I was better than I was... or so I thought. When in actual fact both myself and the the people I had surrounded myself with were all just young angry children trying to get through their lives the best way they knew how, with all the dark angst of young adolescents. We were all just looking out for ourselves, not respecting or caring about the people in our wake. I thought I was cared for, that I was special to these people, but the truth is I wasn't anything other than an object in their way, much as they were in mine. 

I was a young angry girl who felt unloved and so was looking for love in all the wrong areas. I was a young angry girl who struggled with my life and my relationships and my family and myself and was looking for direction and support in all the wrong places. I found happiness at the bottom of a bottle, or on the other side of a pill, or in the reflection of a dust covered mirror. I found love and acceptance in somebodies bed, anybodies bed. I was 14 years old. Just looking for peace in a world that didn't seem to have any. Looking for quiet amongst the noise and looking for gentle beneath the rough. I just wanted to be free, I just wanted to feel free.

At the time I thought I was fine, at the time I thought I had friends and I thought I had a community. At the time I thought that I was free. Until I was with child and my community melted away, my friends turned into people I had to hide from. Turned into people who would bully, tease and humiliate me for being pregnant, people that reduced me to tears, time and time again. People who spread my "humiliating" news across the entire town. I hadn't found friends or a community, I had not found peace or quiet, happiness or love. I was not free. I was caged by the humiliation that had become my life, caged by my shame and guilt. 

I had two people who saved me in such a time of turmoil. The girl who was with me as I took the test, my best friend. The girl who saved me and my life more times than she can ever be aware of. The girl who, as a 7 year old in a new school gave me the confidence to just be. She and I laid together each night and talked about life as a Mummy and her an Aunty, beach trips and park play. She gave me the courage to believe in myself, she gave me the confidence to know that I did have a choice in this decision. 

And my Mum, who, when I thought I had no where to turn, I turned to her. And she helped me, without judgement or anger. She helped me to find a way to make a decision, gave me direction and faith. Helped me to know that even though my friends and my community had dissolved I wasnt in this alone.

So I made a decision, and that was that I have been unable to care for myself, unable to look after my best interests and my safety. I was unable to look after my health and my well being. If I cannot look after myself then this baby would also not be looked after. My mind was not mature enough, my heart not aged enough, I would not be able to give this child the life that he deserved. It was the most heart wrenching and emotionally challenging decision I have ever had to make in my life. Still, 11 years later, I have never experienced such turmoil or emotional heart ache. I have not found myself in another situation that is even comparable. It is a moment that follows me through life, every day, always at the back of mind. 

So on January 19th, 2001, I walked into Mayo Hospital with a black and heavy heart, with tear stained cheeks and with a foggy mind. And I waited for hours, to end the life that was growing within me, constantly battling my internal struggle. Constantly doubting myself, both my decision and where my life has ended up, even at such a ripe, young age. Such dark thoughts for a child, a child growing a child. 

I laid on a table and they asked me if I was sure this is what I wanted to do to which I responded yes, they placed the gas mask over my mouth and I started to count to ten as I listened to the nurse talk about her dinner, a roast lamb. I counted to 4 and then I changed my mind, this is not a decision i can live with, I decided. I shouted stop, I screamed for them to stop, I begged and pleaded, but my mouth wouldnt open, my eyes were closed tight and my mind shutting down. 

Then I woke up, and it was over, and it has been a decision I have had to live with.

Every day I think about that child, that child who would now be 10. My child, who is no more. I know, in my heart of hearts that I could not have provided him with a life, myself with a life, not one that we were both worthy of but regardless, every day my grief stricken's me and every day I want to talk about him, I want someone to know that I cared, that I loved him, that I miss him. But this is a moment that we do not talk about. This is a moment that is taboo.

My sleeping angel, Tye Cameron, you will forever be in my heart giving me the faith and courage and direction I need, the love and peace and happiness I was looking for. 

I won't forget... because that moment, made me.


  1. You are a brave girl and I am glad you talked about your boy Tye.

    1. Thank you... I cannot even begin to tell you how good it feels to tell that story

  2. I can totally relate to that story, I don't have that same courage as you, but I'm glad to see you do.

    1. Im sorry that you can relate, though I think you have more courage than you know x

  3. I just wanted to say that I was in a similar situation to you and made the same decision (which I have always deeply deeply regretted & felt exactly the same as you when lying on the bed with the mask). However, after going on to have children and deciding we were done, we unexpectedly fell pregnant..... with twins! (much to our absolute complete shock - we only took 1 risk and I was 38yo). I also have had a miscarriage as well when I was very young, and I am positive that these two babies are the two babies that I initially never had. They are non identical boys & they are completely different. Sometimes things happen for a reason. xxxxxx

    1. That is beautiful

      You were obviously meant to bring those souls into the world, how lucky you are that they found you again

  4. I love your courage and raw open honesty.I believe it will really help others.
    They say if we change one day in our lives we wouldnt be where we are now.
    Use that to give you strength hon,knowing you have beautiful Miss E now and your angel Tye is looking out for her.
    Warm hugs.x

    1. Thank you for your kind words honey x
      I know I made the right decision and doing what I did for Tye is what lead me to Miss E so on the days that I feel sad about him, I remind myself to be thankful to him.

  5. This story makes me proud to know you, because, I still remember when you told me this story years ago, I decided that you! were the strongest girl I had ever met.
    After exploring the other side of the world, you still are.
    Love you,

    1. That is possibly one of the nicest things anyone has ever said to me
      Love you