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What games we might have played together and songs I might have sung to you. What sunshine schemes and starlit dreams we might have shared.”

the lily

It seems but a short while ago that our youngest daughter called to tell us the wonderful news that she and her husband were expecting their first baby. We were thrilled especially since we knew that they had been hoping to start a family for some time.

Astonishingly, a few hours later, our eldest daughter called with the news that she too was expecting a baby. What joy! These new additions to the family were indeed a cause for celebration and we all gathered, brothers, sisters, grandparents, great-grand parent, aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews and nieces, to congratulate the prospective parents. The atmosphere at that last family get-together was euphoric.

How quickly things change. In the space of one month we have lost three grandchildren, (E, it became apparent, was carrying twins) none of them ever having seen the blessed light of day. Not since the loss of our first granddaughter and the death of my mother have I felt such absolute anguish. To see your children’s hopes and dreams crumble so tragically is almost too painful to bear.

At the moment it’s difficult to think of August as a month of “sunshine schemes and starlit dreams.” Rather, for now, it has become a time of, “what might have been.”