Journey’s end

This is the post that I always feared I would one day have to write. It breaks my heart to be writing it now. Our beautiful Jessica passed away in the early hours of this morning. She had been unwell on and off for several weeks after returning to school. We had several doctor’s visits, a couple of trips to hospital and an emergency admission earlier this week. When she was discharged on Thursday with a big bag of meds, we thought that these would finally help her start to get better. Sadly, it was not to be.

 

Last night, she woke up coughing and came for a snuggle in our bed. She complained that her back and tummy hurt and then suddenly she stopped breathing. We called 999, tried CPR which the paramedics and A&E staff continued but to no avail. Our beautiful Jessica was gone.

 

Jessica wearing a butterfly headband - "Journey's end"

 

To say we are heartbroken is an understatement. We are devastated beyond belief and yet thankful that we had six and a half wonderful years with this beautiful little girl of ours. Seven years ago, we were told that she would not survive for more than a few days. To have had so long with her was a huge blessing. We thank God for every day we had with her. No amount of time would ever have been enough though.

 

Sophie, me, hubby and Jessica sitting in a garden during our holiday

 

We were lucky to be able to enjoy a family holiday with Jessica in the last couple of weeks and we made some wonderful memories which we will treasure forever.

 

Sophie has been our little ray of sunshine. We don’t think she fully understands yet – she knows that Jessica is in hospital and that Mummy and Daddy are sad and miss her, but I don’t think that she yet realises that Jessica will not be coming home again.

 

Our beautiful girl is now out of pain – no more breathlessness, no more struggles with energy. Her special heart is whole again but ours will always have a big Jessica-sized hole which can never be filled.

 

Jessica sitting in her buggy and smiling

 

Thank you so much for all your kind messages of support and love on social media today. We know that we are surrounded by love and prayers and we are eternally grateful for that. Please, please keep talking about Jessica. Don’t ever feel afraid to mention her name. She is our little girl, she is part of our family and we will want to talk about her, to remember her, to relive all those beautiful memories. We know that many of you feel that you have no words, that you may not know what to say. The fact that you are letting us know that you care is enough.

 

One of my lovely blogging friends has kindly set up a JustGiving page in Jessica’s memory to raise money for Little Hearts Matter. They have supported us so much through this journey and we know they will continue to do so in our bereavement.

 

Jessica will be going to the John Radcliffe on Monday for a post-mortem to determine the cause of her death. It seems appropriate that the hospital where this journey first started; the hospital that gave us that first glimmer of hope is the hospital to give that final piece of information about her life.

 

Thank you all again so much for your support and love. It means a lot to know that Jessica touched so many hearts in her short life. She was truly a joy-carrier and we were so blessed to have been her mummy and daddy.

 

Jessica cuddling her Kerry dolly

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106 Comments

  1. April 14, 2018 / 3:17 pm

    I’m so sorry. She sounds like a very beautiful and very brave little girl. I’m glad you made some lovely memories in the past couple of weeks. Lots of love to you all x

  2. Becca
    April 14, 2018 / 3:22 pm

    You don’t know me but I have been following your posts about Jessica for a long time and it was such a shock to hear your news. Im so very sorry, what a beautiful brave girl. Thinking of you all x

  3. April 14, 2018 / 3:29 pm

    A beautiful angel no longer in pain. She was truly loved by all and will be greatly missed.

    Sending lots of love and hugs x

  4. April 14, 2018 / 3:31 pm

    This is heartbreaking. You are such a lovely family. Jessica will always be remembered. Lots of love to you all. xxx

  5. April 14, 2018 / 3:33 pm

    I’m so sorry for your loss, you are so brave for writing this post when you must be hurting so much right now. She seems like an amazing little girl

  6. April 14, 2018 / 3:41 pm

    It is such devastating news…My thoughts are with you and your family. Jessica was such a special little girl. She will always be remembered. Sending love and hugs to you xxxx

  7. April 14, 2018 / 3:43 pm

    I just want to reach over and give you a big hug. I’m so sorry to hear the sad news, you’ve all been through so much. They’re never truly gone as they live on in our hearts and memories which i’m Sure Jessica will xx

  8. April 14, 2018 / 3:54 pm

    I am so deeply sorry to read this today. What an amazing family you are. Sleep well princess. Lots of love xxx

  9. Laura: Adventures with J
    April 14, 2018 / 3:55 pm

    Oh Louise. I am so devastated for you and your family. Your little girl has touched so many people in her far too short lifetime and she will be remembered by so many for her huge welcoming smile and her strength and courage. Sending my thoughts and prayers to you all. Xxxx

  10. April 14, 2018 / 3:59 pm

    I am so terribly sorry for your loss. What a sweet, beautiful little girl. I hope that your memories of Jessica can bring you some comfort in this sad time. xx

  11. April 14, 2018 / 4:00 pm

    I am so very sorry to hear about Jessica. I am thinking of you all and sending prayers and love xx

  12. Fi Ni Neachtain
    April 14, 2018 / 4:01 pm

    I am so sorry for your loss. Jessica was such a beautiful little girl. Sending you all lots of love x

  13. Grainne Reid
    April 14, 2018 / 4:02 pm

    Just read your post to Rebecca, we are sending so much love to ye and will forever keep Jessica in our hearts xxx thinking of you all xxx

  14. April 14, 2018 / 4:04 pm

    I don’t know you or your beautiful family and yet I am so devastated for you. Your words are so well written and heartfelt I really can’t imagine what it must be like to go through something like this but I’m sending you love and strength. I’m so sorry to read this xx

  15. April 14, 2018 / 4:05 pm

    The fact that she is no longer in pain somehow makes it more bearable indeed. She was such a special girl. Sending much love and prayers. Xxx

  16. April 14, 2018 / 4:11 pm

    Words can be of little comfort at times like this but, as you say, Jessica is no longer in pain. Thoughts with you, Michael and Sophie. Jessica will be gone but never forgotten.

  17. April 14, 2018 / 4:12 pm

    Sending all my love Louise, I cannot begin to imagine your pain. Your beautiful little girl, Jessica will always be remembered. Xxxx

  18. April 14, 2018 / 4:12 pm

    We are sending all of our love to you and your family. Jessica’s life gave so many great hope and I’m so completely heartbroken for you all. You’ll be in my thoughts and prayers continually. Your little one is whole again, I’m so sorry for your beautiful, precious loss.

  19. April 14, 2018 / 4:13 pm

    So devastated to see your news this morning and have been thinking about Jessica and all of you all day. I know how much joy and happiness she brought you and I cannot imagine how you are feeling today and will be feeling for weeks, months and years to come. Sending love to you and hoping you get some answers from the hospital. X

  20. April 14, 2018 / 4:18 pm

    I found your family through Instagram and followed Jessica’s journey. I waited with you for news of her surgery, held my breath on the day until you told us she was out. Watched her recover and go back to school. Throughout it all she was so brave and always smiling. My thoughts are with you at such a sad time. She died knowing how much she was loved, and with those she loved. Xxxxx Sally

  21. April 14, 2018 / 4:18 pm

    I used to look our for your post every Sunday with your two little girls and I will really miss seeing them together. I feel like I’ve seen her grow up and she really did bring a smile to so many. Lots of love to you Louise xx

  22. April 14, 2018 / 4:28 pm

    I am truly sorry for you loss. What a special girl you had in your lives xx

  23. April 14, 2018 / 4:31 pm

    Jessica’s beautiful smile and her amazing legacy will never leave this world. So desperately sorry for your tragic loss Louise, and to Michael, Sophie and the rest of your family too xxx

  24. April 14, 2018 / 4:36 pm

    I’ve loved hearing about Jessica (and Sophie) through your posts, particularly the funny things they said in FTMOB. She was a ray of sunshine. I’m so very sorry for your loss. Sending love to you all.

  25. April 14, 2018 / 4:42 pm

    I am so very sad to read this – I cannot even begin to imagine how you’re feeling! You are all in my thoughts and prayers – I will always remember Jessica as such a brave and kind and beautiful girl, whose joy you shared with us all on here. Much love to you all xx

  26. Jenny Crossley
    April 14, 2018 / 4:47 pm

    So sorry to hear this terrible news from Gillian this morning. You have all been very much in my thoughts today. Jessica will live on in your hearts in all the lovely memories that you have. She was a beautiful, courageous wee girl. xx

  27. April 14, 2018 / 4:49 pm

    I’m so sorry to hear about Jessica, and I’m wisning you the strength to get through this as a family, as you find your new normal. It says a lot about a person when they’re only six and have left such a legacy.

  28. April 14, 2018 / 5:01 pm

    I’m really sad to hear this news and although I just don’t know what to say, please know that you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers, and I too will remember Jessica xxx

  29. April 14, 2018 / 5:04 pm

    I am truly heartbroken for you. She will be a beautiful angel and I am sure will always be near by. No words can take away the pain but I will be thinking about Jessica and your family.

  30. April 14, 2018 / 5:07 pm

    Oh my goodness. I am truly sorry to hear your news. So many beautiful memories. Sending love to you all and thinking of you.

  31. Tracey Abrahams
    April 14, 2018 / 5:15 pm

    I am so sorry for your loss, Jessica was a beautiful courageous little girl. You and your family are very much in my thoughts today xxx

  32. April 14, 2018 / 5:18 pm

    There are no words I can share ,no sentiment that can help …know I am thinking of you all. Know that I know it’s not fair despite knowing that this day could happen since she was born, it’s still not fair . Know that you all made her life …gave her life and she enjoyed it so much . I’m heartbroken for you all and one day too I know I’ll be on the same side as you both and that still won’t be fair.
    Sending you love and strength xxxxx thinking of your family

  33. Charlotte Hawley
    April 14, 2018 / 5:19 pm

    Louise and family, I’m so sorry to learn this news. We have met a few times over the years as we have both been on the same road. My son James has a double inlet ventricle with his operations at Southampton and reviewed in Oxford too.
    These heart babies never fail to amaze me with their courage and determination, even when the odds are against them.
    We will be thinking of you all at this awful time, with all our love xxx

  34. April 14, 2018 / 5:34 pm

    I’m so sorry to hear this. Thinking of you all xxx

  35. April 14, 2018 / 5:39 pm

    Oh Louise. Saying sorry just doesn’t seem enough — words don’t really express how sad and sorry I am to hear this. Thinking of you and your family at such a devastating time. Lots and lots of love xxxxx

  36. April 14, 2018 / 5:51 pm

    I am so very sorry to read about Jessica’s passing. I’ve been following her (and your) journey for some time now and she was such a beautiful little girl. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family xxx

  37. April 14, 2018 / 5:52 pm

    Oh Louise what a davstating post to have to write. Jessica was an amazing girl and she was lucky to have such an amazing family in you guys. Sending so, so much love xxx

  38. Tracy Nixon
    April 14, 2018 / 5:54 pm

    I’m so deeply sorry for your loss and you are so brave for writing this post. You little girl was so precious and from her smile, it is not hard to see that she lived a very happy and forfilled life with her family. I will pray for you all to stay strong xxx

  39. April 14, 2018 / 6:12 pm

    Louise I’m so shocked and sad to hear your devastating news. I found your blog through linky’s and whenever I read or followed your Instagram posts I always thought what a brave and happy girl. I can’t imagine how you will find the strength to carry on but we are all here for you. Thinking of you all xxx

  40. Lucy Gowing
    April 14, 2018 / 6:18 pm

    I have no words to express how truly sorry I am for your loss. Jessica was a beautiful, brave girl, who could not have wished for a better family to enjoy life with and support her. She was always smiling and I so enjoyed reading your posts about family life – you were always out and about doing something, with many memories to treasure. Sending my love to you all at this tragic time xxx

  41. April 14, 2018 / 6:27 pm

    I am so so sorry to hear this. I can’t imagine the pain you are all in. Keeping you in my thoughts. x

  42. April 14, 2018 / 6:30 pm

    I am so very sad to read the news about Jessica. You are very brave for writing this post Louise. Sending hugs to you and your family at this sad time.

  43. April 14, 2018 / 6:38 pm

    All I know about you and your family I know from reading your blog, and I know that Jessica was a proper little fighter who never seemed to let things get on top of her. I admit I had a tear or two reading this, I am so very very sorry xx

  44. April 14, 2018 / 6:40 pm

    I am so sorry to hear this. At least she was with you surrounded by love. Sending you all huge hugs x

  45. April 14, 2018 / 6:40 pm

    I’m sorry to hear about beautiful Jessica. Sending you all lots of love xx

  46. April 14, 2018 / 6:46 pm

    I’m so, so sorry. That’s devastating – I don’t have any words. Thinking of you. xx

  47. April 14, 2018 / 6:47 pm

    I can’t even begin to comprehend what your night was like, you are so incredibly brave. I am so veey sorry for you that she has gone. I hope you have people around to support you and help carry you through the next few weeks and months. Love, and strength, to you and your family from me and mine xx

  48. April 14, 2018 / 6:57 pm

    Reading this, I have no words… So incredibly sorry to hear this; my thoughts are with you & your loved ones at this time xxx

  49. April 14, 2018 / 7:16 pm

    Louise, I am so sorry. I’ve loved reading about Jessica and seeing her pretty, smiling face. She won’t ever be forgotten.

  50. April 14, 2018 / 7:23 pm

    I am so sorry to read this Jessica was such a special girl. I am truly sorry for your loss and send all the love and strength in the world x

  51. April 14, 2018 / 7:24 pm

    Sending all my love. So sorry on your loss of Jessica xx

  52. April 14, 2018 / 7:25 pm

    This is so heartbreaking. I can’t even begin to imagine how you all feel. I’m so sorry for your loss xx

  53. April 14, 2018 / 7:26 pm

    There are just no words , I am heartbroken for you and your family. Please , please know how much love there was for Jessica and how much we were all there with you through the last few months. I have so enjoyed watching daily updates and how positive you have been each day through what must have been a very stressful time. Jessica and her beautiful smiling face will never be forgotten and your families story has truly touched me. I prayed when i saw this title that it wasnt going to be the journeys end , i prayed that somehow you were going to say that Jessica had made some huge improvement. You will eternally be in my thoughts and I know that Jessicas Angel wings will huge & sparkly 🙂

  54. April 14, 2018 / 7:32 pm

    My heart breaks for you. Sending all my love.

    Cat xxx

  55. April 14, 2018 / 7:35 pm

    So so sorry to hear of the loss of Jessica, I can’t imagine the pain but also probably shock you are all in right now. My thoughts are with you all x

  56. April 14, 2018 / 7:40 pm

    I cannot begin to imagine your heartbreak. Yours was one of the first blogs I found when I started myself and I have watched Jessica grow. I saw her personality shine through in every photo, in every word you wrote about her. Her heart was special and precious in so many ways and the world is a poorer place without her. I am so, so sorry for your loss. xx

  57. April 14, 2018 / 7:45 pm

    So sorry to read this. Sadly I know first hand what it’s like. I’m here if you need to chat. Rest in peace Jessica xx

  58. Sam
    April 14, 2018 / 8:29 pm

    I’m so very sorry for your loss – Jessica was such a special little girl and it feels very cruel that she is no longer with you. But as you say, her heart is now whole and she is no longer in pain. Sending all my love to your family during this incredibly sad time xxx

  59. April 14, 2018 / 8:32 pm

    Oh Louise! Jessica’s memory will live on in the hearts and minds of everyone that she touched with her brightness, through this blog. We’re so sorry to hear of your loss and she was so strong for so long. Our prayers are with you all x Bella and her mummy Dawn x

  60. April 14, 2018 / 8:48 pm

    Through your blog I saw Jess grew up and its so weird to read that she is gone. I am thinking of you and Jessica and Micheal and Sophie. I am remembering the blog post where I saw her make crafts and jump on puddles, I will remember her on her colorful jackets and pretty princess clothes. How happy she is when you visit places and legoland. I will miss her and her lovely sweet smile.

    I am sorry for your loss and sending you all my love.

  61. April 14, 2018 / 8:55 pm

    So sorry for your loss. Jessica will live on in all your hearts xx

  62. April 14, 2018 / 9:09 pm

    Gees I don’t know how you’ve managed to write this. I’m a blubbing wreck just reading it. I’m so sorry to read this news.

  63. April 14, 2018 / 9:39 pm

    Oh Louise, I cried reading this. I cannot imagine how you must all be feeling right now. We are all thinking of you. Although I didn’t meet Jessica, she looks like such a ray of sunshine. Xxx

  64. Fiona Karbal
    April 14, 2018 / 9:44 pm

    I am so sorry to read this post about the loss of your daughter Jessica. I follow your blog and have read previous posts about Jessica and was always struck by how much she enjoyed life, not letting her condition stop her from having fun and being a happy little girl. I hope that the memories of the happy times you spent together can help to comfort you at this difficult time.

  65. April 14, 2018 / 9:57 pm

    Love to you all and wishing I could send extra strength xx

  66. April 14, 2018 / 10:10 pm

    I’m so so sorry for your loss. There aren’t any words of consolation I can say – I just wanted to let you know that you and your family are in my thoughts. I loved reading about the adventures and fun you had with Jessica and Sophie. I wish you lots of love and strength for the future.

  67. April 14, 2018 / 10:52 pm

    I am so very sorry for your loss. There are no words but I’m thinking of you. Love and strength to you all xx

  68. April 14, 2018 / 11:57 pm

    I have only tears.
    Over the last few years while sharing the conversations we have with our children I feel I have gotten to know Jessica a bit and I am so grateful. Thank you so much for taking the Time to share her with us.
    Your grace and the thoughtful tribute you have shared with us during your time of need has raised you higher in my esteem than I though possible.
    Os meus sentimentos, my sincerest condolences to you and your family.
    I will never forget Jessica.
    Ever.

    ~Joy

  69. April 15, 2018 / 12:14 am

    So sorry to hear about Jessica, thinking of you all x

  70. Kyles @ Pickles and Pords
    April 15, 2018 / 3:47 am

    So very, very sad to hear this. I always love reading about your gorgeous and funny and kind and brave Jessica. Thinking of you all xx

  71. Louise
    April 15, 2018 / 6:02 am

    Thank you all so much for your kind words. It helps so much knowing that we are surrounded by such love right now. Jessica brought so much joy to so many people and it has touched to know that so many people followed her journey. She was such a little fighter x

  72. April 15, 2018 / 6:09 am

    Louise, Michael and Sophie, My husband and I are truly heartbroken to hear this news. Jessica meant so much to us and through your blog we fell in love with a little girl who we never even met. I can’t imagine how you must be feeling, but you are all in our thoughts and prayers x x x Sarah and Dave

  73. April 15, 2018 / 6:20 am

    I am so so sorry to hear this. Huge hugs to you all x

  74. April 15, 2018 / 7:18 am

    I can’t say anything to lessen your hurt but I just wanted you to know that you have my prayers and my love.

  75. April 15, 2018 / 7:40 am

    Sending love and hugs to you all. So sorry to hear Jessica has passed away, I’ve always enjoyed seeing your photo’s of her & reading about your journey x

  76. April 15, 2018 / 8:13 am

    I’m so, so sorry for your loss. As you know I’ve followed your blog for a while, and Jessica looks like such a lovely little girl. Your words here have done her hugely proud too. Thinking of you at this difficult time xxx

  77. Chelle
    April 15, 2018 / 9:49 am

    Sending you love and strength. What a beautiful and inspiring little girl. Much love to you, Michael and Sophie x

  78. April 15, 2018 / 9:51 am

    Such heartbreaking news, sending love and hugs to you all xx

  79. April 15, 2018 / 10:30 am

    I am so so sorry to read of your loss. Sending all the love to you all xx

  80. April 15, 2018 / 11:23 am

    I’m so very sorry for the loss of your beautiful daughter x sending lots of hugs xxx

  81. chantelle hazelden
    April 15, 2018 / 11:53 am

    So utterly sorry for your loss. Thinking of you all at this difficult time xx

  82. April 15, 2018 / 5:15 pm

    I’m sending you all our love. This is devastating.

  83. April 15, 2018 / 6:14 pm

    Every Friday I have so looked forward to your word of the week post, seeing the beautiful photo’s of Jessica and Sophie and all of the fun and love you had packed into each week. I’m so sorry that Jessica’s journey has come to end but she will never be forgotten. I’m thinking of you all and sending you so much love x

  84. April 15, 2018 / 8:04 pm

    I’m so sorry to read this. All my love. I’ve donated, Vicki x

  85. April 15, 2018 / 8:09 pm

    You’ve been in my thoughts all weekend. Wishing you strength to get through the dark days! I’m so glad you’ve got a support network around you.

    So sorry for your loss. ❤️

  86. April 15, 2018 / 9:36 pm

    I am so so sorry to read that journeys end has come.
    May the memories bring you some small amount of comfort.
    Sending love and hugs to you all, especially Sophie who is to young to understand the finality of it.

  87. April 16, 2018 / 7:45 am

    Oh my – I am so so sorry for your loss. What a heart-breaking time for you all xx

  88. April 16, 2018 / 9:47 am

    I’m so sorry to read this, I cannot imagine how hard it just be for you all. Sending lots of love xxx

  89. April 16, 2018 / 2:42 pm

    I am so so sorry for your loss. Such a special little girl. Sending love to you all x

  90. April 16, 2018 / 3:00 pm

    Sending huge love and prayers to you all. I struggled to read this due to our own close call last year and can’t imagine how you are feeling right now. A day at a time I guess. And you’ve got a million happy memories too xx

  91. April 16, 2018 / 3:44 pm

    I was so sorry to read your IG post when I was away on Saturday. Jessica has touched so many lives and I’ve loved following your adventures on Country Kids each week. Her smile was always there to enjoy along with Sophie’s.

    As we headed off on our own Country Kids adventure on Saturday, you were all in our thoughts. We sailed petals down the stream for Jessica and shed a few tears when our day ended with a rainbow.

    I feel that Jessica will be with us every time we are out and about. If that makes any sense.

    Sending you all my love xx

  92. April 17, 2018 / 3:37 am

    Oh, Louise, this news has really floored me and I can’t begin to imagine how you and your family must be feeling. I am so sorry to read this sad news and for your loss. Little Jessica touched the lives of many without ever having met them and that is special.

    Sending big virtual hugs to you all.

    xx

  93. April 17, 2018 / 7:49 am

    Oh Gosh Louise, I cried reading this, my heart aches for you. I am so terribly sorry X

  94. April 17, 2018 / 4:44 pm

    Big healing hugs. I’m so very sorry. 🙁

  95. April 17, 2018 / 9:38 pm

    Words cannot even begin to express how truly sorry I am. Your beautiful girl will be forever remembered and will live on in all your memories. Sending so much love to you all x

  96. I’m so so very sad to hear this Sending all my love, for what it’s worth. Can’t quite imagine what it must be like to go through this. So sorry… Rest in peace little Jessica

  97. April 18, 2018 / 10:05 pm

    Oh, there are not enough words in the world to express how much my heart is breaking for you. I remember when I first began following you and your beautiful family on Instagram. Jessica’s smile was radiant. She lit up my feed.

    She will forever be present in my heart. Her story will continue.

    Much love to you all at this devastating time. xx

  98. April 19, 2018 / 5:48 pm

    I’m so terribly sorry to hear this sad news and my heart and prayers go out to you and your lovely family.
    Take care. X

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