Our Father who .Th oughts fr om Kate's Dad.I believe a Mum becomes a mum when she fi nds out she is expecting a baby. From that point on her life changes while she nurtures a new life. If she has been smoking she will consider stopping. If she likes the odd glass of wine she may cut it out. She will consider when she will go for check-ups and scans. She will plan her Maternity Leave in the hours of the night she will plan the future, perhaps while sitting up in bed, cuddling her bump. One yet two.If things go wrong and don't work out as we all hope and pray they will: she is still Mummy. I believe Dad becomes a dad when the baby is born and only then will he start his planning. Football or Hurling, or Camogie? Gymnastics or Tennis? Fishing together whether it's a boy or girl. A summer evening on Lough Sheelin, water lapping beside the boat under a crimson sunset.But then things don't go the way the couple planned and the future fades, mist comes over the plans and into a dad's mind. He can't possibly know how to respond because we men are totally lost when it comes to handling the loss of a baby. We don't know what to say, at times we even don't know how to hug properly: we are afraid to break our fragile partners into small pieces. At least that is the way I was. But what has become clearer to me is simply that the loss of a baby you carried inside your body, a baby you gave part of your life-force to for months, must be far more terrifying to endure as a mum, that to watch it happen as a dad. If we feel lost and powerless then Mams must feel devastated, abandoned, confused, and why me.....why us...why..why..WHY.In the fi rst few days and weeks, even months, I felt so lost, so powerless, so useless. My mind was only a faint echo of what it was before. I existed in a world I retreated into - where I did what I needed to do to comfort the family and to arrange things. There was is a haze about me: at times it almost hurt to think. I tried to pray,. One day I got myself into our local Church, in the quiet my mind stopped whirling. Could I have done more? Am I being the husband I should be? I tried again to pray and began "Our Father who art in.." Hey! Hold on, that voice in my head jumps in. Why are you calling God Father? He can't be a father if he allowed this thing to happen. Fathers would understand, Fathers couldn't......"Thy will be done on Earth...."Hold on! Voice is back...So this was His will...He did it. Stop! Why are you even talking with God?"And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive......" But I don't forgive...never. Pretty terrible stuff I know, in fact looking back and reading what I'm writing, perhaps I should stop now. What am I saying ? Well if I can remember how I felt 26 years ago, then is there hope? Yes because from somewhere, from someone, and I still don't know where from or who from, small whispers arrive that help you arrange that sock-drawer of memories, good and bad, in your mind. We already had a boy and a girl: a family. They, young and all as they were ,helped. They still help. My daughter has just had her second baby, a little girl, and has named her after her sister.We didn't ask for this, it was a surprise but it also tells a tale that the lost Angel remains in every ones memoryFinally, we understood, that what happened just happened. We didn't cause it. We were not at fault. We didn't do anything wrong. It just happened and what was most important: it was outside our control. On The Meaning of Life, and The Actors Studio, on TV, as a last question interviewees are asked "When fi nally you meet God, what will you say?" Now they are expecting this question and have decided what their reply will be. Some people like to give a so-called funny answer like - God if you live in perpetual light: do you wear sunglasses all the time? Or God, if you have someone sitting on your right hand and someone sitting on your left hand: how do you wave at newcomers?I will be asking Him Why do you destroy parents by letting their babies die? And because I know He can never adequately answer that I will ask Him if I can leave and go to the other place. And He will say: you want to leave Heaven and go to Hell! That terrible, horrendous, terrifying, place! Then I will tell Him I have no fear of Hell. It's where I was for a long time after we lost Kate.
"Words are things; and a small drop of ink,Falling like dew upon a thought, producesTh at which makes thousands, perhaps millions think."Lord Byron