Greetings from sunny Thailand!

I never thought you’d read these words from me.

We never particularly wanted to come to Asia because it is quite different from the familiarity of the west, very foreign. I know, call me ignorant (because I was), but my perception of Asia was that it would be an uncomfortable, scary place for my western appetites.

But since 01 & 02 December 2022, the day Ollie passed away and subsequently was born, I have felt completely out of place in life. Like an alien in our surroundings. Home hasn’t really felt like home.

When I asked Aaron to come on this trip, I desperately wanted to be in a foreign place we didn’t know much about. Maybe because I needed to physically experience what I have been going through emotionally. Maybe to run away from home that doesn’t feel like home. Or maybe to simply decompress the last 3 months.

When we got here, I was surprised by the familiarity to my home country, Brazil. The climate, vegetation, chaos, smells… it feels SO familiar to me. There was comfort in this. However, everything has been covered in smog. This was a less exciting surprise.

Currently Southeast Asia is covered in smog and it has followed us on every location we have visited during this trip.

Smog in Hanoi
Sunset in Halong Bay
Sunrise in Angkor Wat
Haze in Phan Nga Bay

As much as I wish the skies were clear, I realised this was the perfect representation of the current stage of grief I’m going through. Grief is like a smog haze. It is always there. You can still see the beauty of a place and experience it to its fullness, but everything is still touched by it.

Ollie is the baseline thought of my life. Everything else is secondary. But it doesn’t mean I haven’t been able to enjoy life. I have. We have laughed, been in awe, made memories, but grief is undoubtedly always there.

Grief, much like the haze, also doesn’t allow you to see too far ahead. Sometimes you see shapes in the horizon. Sometimes you don’t see anything. It forces you to live in the “now” and appreciate what you can see.

But what I have also discovered is that this haze, like grief, makes for beautiful sunrises and sunsets. They’re pink and orange and magical. And that is what truly happy moments have been. They are sweet, beautiful and magical and I have been so much more appreciative of them.

Whilst I’ll never be grateful for grief, and would give up everything to have Ollie in my arms healthy and happy, I have decided to make the most of this healing journey. I have to, because, as his mom, I want to continue to honour him every second of my existence. And if it’s true that his cells are still in my body, then I want to show him this big beautiful world!

I love you Ollie! You are the reason for everything 💙