Guest Blog from Downs Side Up

PThe Power of a Song

I recently began thinking about a song by Depeche Mode that was on a compilation CD in my car at the time I was pregnant with Natty. Just another track, probably one I skipped over a hundred times to get to my favourite.

After her birth the very same song suddenly became full of meaning, so hugely significant it could have been written just for us. It seemed to be speaking to the family of a child who was born vulnerable and spending her early, precious, irreplaceable weeks in a Neo-Natal unit. I actually listened for the first time.

It summed up the guilt we felt at our shock after her arrival, the sorrow that cut through us as we watched her being subjected to uncomfortable procedures, the pain of the empty crib at home where she should have been sleeping, the fear that she would grow up remembering the aloneness in the incubator, that overriding feeling all parents have that they would do anything at all to make things better.

I used listen to it over and over during the 30 minute journeys of solitude to and from the hospital each day, sometimes twice. These car journeys were a bubble of thinking time between home, a place we were desperately trying to keep ‘normal’ for Mia, and SCBU with it’s routines and clinical artificiality where we were protected from the outside world by the staff, guided along under their umbrella of care, but where our baby still didn’t quite feel our own.

When I listen now, the memories come flooding back and it still has the power to bring a tear to my eye. But now at least I can see what the masterplan was… and Natty has room in her heart for everyone!

Precious by Depeche Mode

Precious and fragile things
Need special handling
My God what have we done to You?

We always try to share
The tenderest of care
Now look what we have put You through…

Angels with silver wings
Shouldn’t know suffering
I wish I could take the pain for You

If God has a master plan
That only He understands
I hope it’s Your eyes He’s seeing through

I pray You learn to trust
Have faith in both of us
And keep room in Your heart for two


**Mardra here with an extra note. Hayley Goleniowska wrote and shared this post about 4 years ago on her blog DownsSideUp. I was new to “meeting” her then. It struck me so how this song by Depeche Mode spoke to her when I too had a Depeche Mode song speak to me when my son was born, about twenty years before. (See E) Art…it’s malleable. OK, now enjoy the video, too.***

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