Monday, 31 March 2014

Little Pip and the rainbow wish

Last October something special happened. 

I was sitting in front of my computer in the very early hours of October 15 2013. The act of being up late in itself rarely happens any more. With a young baby, it has become the norm for me to become somewhat less coherent the closer the clock ticks to midnight. 

So there I was, going through my emails when I came to an offer for children's books. I was absent-mindedly scrolling through the page of discounted books when the book "Little Pip and the rainbow wish" just jumped off my screen. I sat there staring at my screen with my heart thumping in my chest. 

If you're a regular reader of my blog, you'll know that Pip is our name for our first baby. We nicknamed our baby "Pip" because when we found out that we were pregnant, she (strong girl feeling) was the size of an apple pip and so the name Pip just stuck. Sadly Pip was lost to us in an early miscarriage and this blog is my story of how I am still putting myself back together after her loss. 

In baby loss circles, the term "rainbow baby" refers to a baby that comes after a pregnancy or infant loss because rainbows symbolise hope, just as a rainbow baby carries all the hopes of his or her parents that he or she will arrive safely in this world, especially after the trauma or the "storm" of baby loss previously experienced. 

As I looked into this book a little more, I realised that the main character called Pip was a boy mouse. Even though I "know" in my heart without a doubt that my Pip is a girl, I still could not shake the feeling that this was an incredible coincidence.

After we lost Pip, to say that we felt her loss deeply would be an understatement. We still miss her now after all this time. After her loss, we also prayed, hoped and wished for another baby - a rainbow baby - to join our family.

What made this even more special is that this book found me in the early hours of October 15. In baby loss circles, October 15 is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance day. 

I wanted to contact the writer, Elizabeth Baguley, to share this story with her straight away. But instead I sat on it for over a month until finally I knew that I had to do it. So I wrote to her last November. A few days later, she wrote back in a lovely response:

"...I'm glad that you did write to tell me all this: it's such a touching story.  Although it's pure serendipity that Little Pip has such a resonance with your circumstances,  I feel somehow proud to be part of your life, especially since there's such a happy epilogue to your tragedy (although the tragedy still remains, I know).

I hope you'll read Little Pip to your daughter when she's old enough – and I'm certain to think of you whenever I read it to children when I visit schools."

I wrote to her again to ask if she'd mind that I share this story on my blog. Happily for me, she was delighted for me to do this. So thank you Elizabeth Baguley for writing this book and for allowing me to share this story here on my blog. I know that as my little one grows up, your book will be one of the most special in our library.