Thursday 12th March
I leave for school early, and my husband follows soon after with my son, to drive to Bristol to pick up our younger son, returning home from Spain.
They text me throughout the day to update their progress.
I end the school day with a Year 10 parents evening, so do not arrive home until 5:30pm.
The boys get back home soon after seven. It’s been a good day out, but everyone is a bit tired.
Younger son goes back to his flat, and elder son decides to take himself to our bed for a little sleep, until we are ready to go to bed. He likes his cuddles.
He says he is tired, and doesn’t really want to eat.
I watch a bit of television, then round about ten o’clock I get his night time medication ready.
Going into the bedroom, I see him lying on his tummy, as usual. Snuggled under the duvet.
I call to him.
I pull the covers back a bit, and he feels warm, but he is face down.
I pull his shoulder around and notice one side of his face looks a bit bluey purple.
He is not breathing.
His eyes look strange.
I shout to my husband.
I pull my son right over on his back.
I start mouth to mouth.
I shout to my husband to call 999.
I begin chest compressions.
Back to mouth to mouth.
The operator on the end of the phone tells me to put my son on the floor.
Keep going with the chest compressions.
He counts with me.
The ambulances are on the way.
I keep counting with the chest compressions.
The first paramedic arrives, and tells me to keep going with the chest compressions.
He sets up the defibrillator.
A tube is put down my son’s throat, and fluid is sucked out.
His lungs are filling up, because he is not breathing.
Two more paramedics arrive, and take over from me and my husband.
They keep on with the chest compressions.
Three shots of adrenaline are pumped to his heart via the chest line.
It’s not working.
Nothing is working.
My son is slipping away.
There is nothing more they can do.
He is gone.
No life left.
Our younger son arrived back at our house at this point.
He is utterly heartbroken.
A policeman comes into the house soon after.
Because it is an unexplained death, there are procedures to follow, and questions to answer.
My son is soon carefully lifted off the floor, and gently placed in his own bed.
I cover him with his duvet to keep him warm.
I hold his little hand tightly in mine.
I try to keep him warm, but his face is now really cold.
I stroke his cheeks and kiss him.
The colour has drained away.
Almost a waxy, creamy, white.
I go and get his hat.
He always slept wearing one on his head.
The back of his neck is still warm, as I pull the hat over his hairless head.
I cannot comprehend what has happened.
I talk to him.
Telling him to wake up.
Willing him to return.
Wanting him to hold me.
Pleading for him to open his eyes.
I’m still holding his hand, trying to keep him warm.
I cry silent tears.
His small little body could take no more, and his tiny heart stopped beating.
I know there are two men waiting outside to take him away.
They suggest I leave the room.
But I can’t.
I want to see that he is looked after.
And they do treat him with the utmost dignity and respect.
Making sure he is still wearing his hat.
They open a white body bag on the floor and carefully place my son inside.
I hold his hand for as long as I can.
Slowly the zip is closed over him, and then he is gently lifted onto a stretcher and strapped in place.
Another cover is pulled over, and then he is taken downstairs.
We all walk outside as he is put in the coroner’s van.
I touch his body again and say goodbye, goodnight.
He is driven away just after half past one in the morning.
I cry and cry and cry.
I cannot sleep.
I can feel him in the house with us.
When we do eventually go to bed, we put his dressing gown between us.
We try to hold onto him.
To keep him close.
Sleep peacefully my darling.
I miss you so very, very much.
We love you with all our hearts.