Six Words

Matt is away this weekend so it’s been a Weekend of Mummy and Toby time. Friday we had an after school play date which was lots of fun, this morning we pottered about at home and this afternoon we headed off to an absolutely lovely afternoon tea party which was raising money for Aching Arms. 

Toby was such a good boy at the busy party full of grown-ups he didn’t know so as a treat we headed off to McDonalds for tea. On the way to the car Toby marvelled at the fact that I knew everyone there. I explained that I knew a few people and the reason I knew them was that they were like me and had babies who had died. He took the fact on board and we carried on. 

At McDonald’s we were having a good time and whilst Toby was eating his apple bag (it’s not all burgers and coke there these days!) he was watching two brothers as they left. They weren’t doing anything remarkable, in fact I didn’t notice them at first. Just after they walked past our table Toby said ‘I wish I had a brother’. I froze, six words that cut deep, he has two brothers, he is a big brother but if I’m honest, he isn’t really is he? 

Toby can’t play with his brothers, he can’t chase them, cuddle them, shout at or moan about them. As much as I talk about the boys, I involve them and he understands about them; in his world he just wants someone to play with. 

I replied saying that I wish he did too and I held him so tight whilst I fought back tears. He just wants a brother and I can’t give him one, I tried and I failed twice over. We only ever tried for another child for Toby. I was fairly happy with just him but we thought he deserved a sibling, Toby has so much love to give. 

This afternoon I realised that no amount of treats, toys, play dates, holidays, and indulgement is never going to make up for his brothers not being here. 

The practical side of me of course knows that having siblings isn’t all fun and games. I have three siblings – we argued and wound each other up so much and life was very hectic BUT it was fun and I love them so much. The shared memories we have, the stories, the bond we have is so special. I’m sad that Toby won’t have this -memories of his brothers are limited to photographs of them, my hospital stays, pictures with their bears and writing messages on balloons. I am so so sorry for him and for us and for Rory and Henry.

I’ve been doing really well lately and now I feel like I’m back to square one (again).

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