My mum and dad with Matthew near their home in Rawtenstall.
I still find Mothering Sunday so hard and once again this past year more changes in our lives. I feel the loss of my dad keenly. My mum died in 1990.
And there are still times when I need to write about Matthew more than others.
I've ceased caring what others think about it.
He was my flesh and blood, carried for 9 months and a wonderful gift.
How can I not feel that loss above all others so deep, so vast, so forever.
And the wonderful news about our first grandchild, due to arrive in the autumn, has stirred so many memories. They come unbidden to the surface.........
How it felt to hold him, his smell, his smile, his tiny fingers and toes, his cuddliness, and warmth.....his aliveness.
This year we will be on our own on Mothering Sunday, as our son lives in Bristol, with his lovely wife, soon to be another family unit, with two cousins already living nearby, and close family on the doorstep.
Then the grief is strong. The emptiness of my life where Matt used to be, and now there is only a sense of his life in Birmingham, impressions of him, stirrings of the voice which used to speak to me, and living not far away.
So I have closed my Facebook account today, for the time being, to take refuge in other words.
I could not face the Mother's Day wishes that I would inevitably read there , on a day when I will not see either of my sons.
No, I need to be able to sometimes have the strategies for dealing with how I feel.
It is always the special days that are the hardest.
Birthdays, Christmas, Anniversaries.......and each one who knows loss says the same.
Being a mother is the deepest, most profound experience, and having physically given birth, the bond is one which is absolute.
It goes on forever.