Looking back at the birth, I don’t have any regrets. The team around us treated Scarlett like any other little girl, saying how beautiful she was, who she looked like. We had the first day together - just me, my husband and my sister. We bathed her. I hadn’t realised how hard it would be, emotionally and physically, but I’m so glad we did it. We made footprints and I took a lock of her hair. More than anything, we just talked to her. Told her all the things we had wanted for her and how sorry we were that she wasn’t going to get to do any of them.
But I wanted to show her off too. I was really proud of her. My parents, in-laws, brother, and some of our closest friends came to meet her on the Sunday. That was really important to me - I wanted them to know her, so when we talk about her now, they know who she was. The midwife looking after us was so thoughtful, in fact the whole team was amazing. There was a student midwife there when I first discovered Scarlett had passed away - it was her first ever shift - and she came in to see us in her lunch break the next day. She understood how proud I was and wanted to meet Scarlett properly.
The funeral was incredibly hard. Normally at funerals someone stands up and says something about the person, about their life, but Scarlett had only had one inside me. I spoke with the priest doing the service and he said “Ruth, the person that really knew her is you.” So I sat down to write what I wanted to say and actually it came really easily. I was proud to share my memories of her and I still am. I kept a diary for a while too, writing to her, and that helped.
“I wanted them to know her, so when we talk about her now, they know who she was.”