The fear that lurks within

There is a fear that lurks at the back of my mind. It is always there. Most days I can push it away, almost forget about but every so often, something will bring it back into sharp focus. Sometimes the triggers are completely unexpected – a photograph glimpsed, a line spoken in a movie, a chance remark overheard.


This time, it was seeing one of Jessica’s preschool T-shirts from last term whilst folding the laundry away. Summer clothes being put away as the seasons change. An acute reminder of time passing by; and with it a stark realisation of the fragility of life.


The fear that lurks within - Little Hearts, Big Love

A dozen memories flashing through my mind: sports day, days out at Legoland, trips to the park, picnics in the garden. My daughter’s beautiful smiling face, her joy, her zest for life shining through. So many happy memories. A sense of sadness for a summer that has gone, for moments that now exist only as memories.


Sophie’s summer clothes do not affect me in the same way. It is not just the passage of time, not just the bittersweet realisation that my little ones are growing so quickly, not just the end of summer that brings me to tears. It is the fear that nags at me, the fear of what my little world may look like when summer comes again.   That fear of the unknown, of the steps in the journey still to come. A reminder of those times when we lived from moment to moment. Those days spent next to a cot in the paediatric intensive care unit, not knowing what the next hour would bring. The knowledge that one day soon, my child’s life will once again be in the hands of a surgeon.


It is something that I try not to think about if I can help it. Sometimes though, the fear of what the future may hold threatens to overwhelm me. These are the moments when all I want to do is stop time from passing by. Wanting to hold the here and now close, to make it last as long as possible. I cannot stop time, I cannot change what the future holds, but I can have hope, and faith, and make the most of today.


And so today, I will hold my girls tightly, I will treasure those moments and store them in my heart. I will push away the fear and focus on the here and now. Today my girls are both here, today we can have fun together and make memories. I do not know what tomorrow will bring, but I won’t let the fear of it take the joy out of today.

25 thoughts on “The fear that lurks within

  1. What a beautifully written post. I cannot imagine what it must feel like to live with that fear, but it’s great to hear that you are just going to enjoy your girls and not worry about what the future may bring.

    1. Thank you Sarah – it is so tough when that fear gets overwhelming but I try not to let it take control – I can’t change the future and worrying about it will only stop me enjoying today.

  2. Oh Louise, you’ve captured exactly how I feel right now. I hate not being able to take for granted that we’ll be a family of 5 at christmas, or that I can’t/don’t want to make plans for next summer because I don’t know what kind of future to imagine. And there’s no point in telling either of us to “think positively” because we both know that won’t make a difference in our cruel world of CHD. But I have started to ignore my nagging thoughts recently, all they do is steal my happiness right at that very moment – it won’t change my future, and I want to enjoy our time together – however long that time might be xxx

    1. I thought about you too when I posted it – these feelings come back particularly strongly when you know surgery is imminent. I had a real moment of feeling so frustrated that there is never a point when you can really relax but thankfully most of the time you can push it away and enjoy the moment. Sending you hugs my lovely, glad you are enjoying making memories and will be keeping you all in my prayers x

    2. It is hard when you can’t look ahead isn’t it and you’re right that thinking positively won’t make a difference with regards to changing the future. So glad that you are able to ignore the nagging thoughts and enjoy the moment – will be thinking of you all and keeping you in my prayers over the coming weeks xxx

  3. Oh hon, you write so well even though it must be so tough to even think about. Unimaginable for most in fact. You’re doing an amazing job, and your attitude it just perfect. There’s so much to be said for truly making the most of now. Lots of love xxx

    1. Thank you Reneé – it has definitely taught me to live in the here and now and enjoy the moment x

  4. Oh I really can’t imagine what it must be like – it must be so difficult living with that fear. You are so right to try to enjoy each moment – big hugs. There is always so much happiness in your posts and all of the adventures you and your girls get up too.

    1. Thank you Jenni – I do try to focus on the positives as much as I can and thankfully the dark moments are not too frequent.

  5. Louise, I wanted to write something after reading your post, but I cannot find the words. They would be too bland, not meaningful enough… You’ve captured the essence of life and happiness in your final words. xxxx

  6. This has really touched me. There are no words that can do this justice. Our children are everything anything that threatens them is so hard to deal with. My thoughts are with you. Kirsten

    1. Thank you, Kirsten. Thankfully it is something I can usually push to the back of my mind, but this time of year often brings it to the forefront.

  7. What a beautifully written post about something that is so difficult to express. I think we all have fear as soon as we give birth but for you it must be far stronger and you manage it with a great perspective of life. am in awe x

    1. Thank you – it certainly makes me realise how important it is to enjoy the little moments x

  8. What a beautiful, emotional and heartfelt piece. The passing of time is always more starkly noted when we look at our children and reflect on the times we have with them, and for you it must be even tougher to watch the seasons go by. I think you’re an amazingly strong woman and I know that you’ll love and cherish every moment with your children.

    1. Thank you Tracey – I don’t always feel very strong but I definitely do try to cherish all those moments x

  9. What a beautifully written post. I can’t imagine what it must feel like dealing with this on a daily basis. I often look at my sister and wonder the same for her with her son, Elliott. I am full of admiration for her – as much as I am for you. You are doing an amazing job. Thank you for being this weeks newbie showcase and for linking to #PoCoLo x

    1. Thank you so much Vicky, it is hard sometimes but the wonderful moments make it all worth it. Thank you for featuring me on the newbie showcase x

  10. It must be extremely hard to push away the fear! You are all extremely brave. Yes cherish the memories but continue to live in the present as you are doing xx #PoCoLo you guys are an inspiration to many x

    1. Thank you – it is hard sometimes but we do try to enjoy the moment as much as possible and keep that fear at bay x

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