This is a special story – a story of great sadness and then great happiness. A story that I feel so privileged to be able to share.
Karen and I have known each other for most of our lives. We spent a year getting to know each other well when we were 17. A whole lifetime ago, it seems – and yet just the other day. We went our separate ways after we left school, but the greatness of Facebook kept us connected.
I always loved seeing Karen’s photos and reading her warm and happy status posts. I was glad to see her kind and obviously loving husband and gorgeous children, Mikey (6) and Amy (15 months younger). So many photos of happy times captured.
Then one day, I went onto Facebook and I saw that a terrible, unthinkable tragedy had struck their family.
Karen and Richard’s beautiful son, Mikey, had been killed in an accident in a hammock when an unstable wall collapsed on him at their friend’s home. Amy was left seriously injured and spent time in intensive care on a ventilator.
Thankfully, Amy recovered well, but their lives were torn apart. A gaping hole tore through their family, and they were left to go on with their lives, without their beloved Mikey. Mikey, a ray of sunshine, a special little boy, gentle in all ways, happy, sensitive and kind.
Time passed for the Cilliers family, I am sure slowly and darkly, a small incomplete family. I can’t really imagine, actually.
Karen and Richard, in no way thinking Mikey could be “replaced”, yearned for another baby. A little person to be Amy’s sibling, a little person to make their family feel a little more whole. And so their new journey began.
They were able to find a special incubator for their new baby in Heidi. Heidi is an amazing person who has four wonderful boys of her own and before Robbie, had already carried another baby boy as a surrogate.
After a long nine months, dearest little Robbie was born in Cape Town. A beautiful angel: a tiny, placid boy with a mop of dark hair and a perfect little face. It’s never happened to me before, but I fell instantly in love with him.
Robbie is almost a month old now. I wish I could see him again, but the Cilliers family have taken their bundle of baby joy back to Johannesburg, and from what I see they are all settling well into this new chapter of their lives.
Wishing you all so so much love, now and always. Thank you for letting me in to share such a special time. I will never forget these few days.