That is how I have felt this week.
I am honoured that my blog has been shortlisted for a Butterfly Award. These are national awards that seek to raise awareness of baby loss.
Some friends nominated me, saying how inspired they have felt by my writing and by Hugo’s legacy.
I have been overwhelmed by the response to my blog. More people have read it than I could ever have imagined. Hugo’s legacy has spread further than I could have dreamed of. Fellow bereaved parents have got in touch to thank me for writing about these still very taboo issues.
It is humbling.
What has especially humbled me this week is the response to the public vote. The winners for each category are selected by public vote, so this week I have been sharing my voting profile on social media.
Once again, I have been overwhelmed at the response.
So many people have shared the profile on Facebook. Many people have retweeted it on Twitter, including those I don’t follow, and have never had an interaction with.
I have received so many good wishes.
The magnitude of the support has left me on the verge of tears a few times – in a good way.
What I write about is what usually happens to ‘other people’. What people hope will never happen to them. Much of what I write is probably as emotionally-draining to read as it is for me to write, I know. But still, people read it.
For those who have lost a baby, my writing demonstrates to them that they are not alone, that someone else ‘gets it.’
For those who have not lost a baby, my writing gives an insight into a world I hope they will never have to venture in to.
My friends and my family have been incredibly supportive. New friends who I have ‘met’ on social media, too.
I have also been humbled by strangers’ support, and continue to feel humbled.
Their admiration of photos of my beautiful boy makes my heart sing despite its bruises.
It goes without saying, I hope, that I would rather no one read a word I write. That I was never recognised for my writing – about any topic. That I was never put forward for any award.
I would give anything to be another anonymous new mother, knackered and up to my eyeballs in pooey nappies.
The universe has set me on a different path, however. My blog and crafting Hugo’s legacy is what gets me out of bed in the morning. Gives me purpose. Gives me a small comfort that Hugo’s name can continue through helping people.
I am humbled that friends, family and strangers alike want to help me with Hugo’s legacy. The awards are an important part of that. Such a level of self-promotion is anathema to me and I did feel a bit strange about the shortlisting at first. The profile that the awards can give to Hugo’s legacy have helped me overcome my reticence.
All that is left to say is thank you, from the bottom of my heart.