I must scan some photos and post a slideshow. In the meantime, Pauline and I have of course been thinking about Sean a lot. We are devastated.
It strikes me that his entire life, from conception to death, lasted 20 years – perhaps exactly.
Sean was born in the Coombe Hospital in Dublin at 18 minutes to midnight on Sunday, 28 July 1991. He died on a Sunday too.
When he was born, there was a true knot in his umbilical cord (which, fortunately, had not pulled tight). From some research this morning, it seems that such knots occur in 1% of pregnancies, and lead to a four-fold increase in likelihood of foetal death. Sean, typically, had been jumping about recklessly in the womb. It didn’t seem to have done him any harm.
When Sean and his class finished school in 2008, a sort of graduation ceremony was held which involved the students holding a lantern with a candle inside. On a label attached to the lantern, each student had written a message to his or her parents.
We still have the lantern, of course. On the label, Sean wrote: Thank you Mum and Dad for supporting me for the first 16 years of my life and pushing me always to reach my full potential, setting me up for college and the rest of my life. I hope you will continue to have such an influence on me.
Sean’s photo appears in the school yearbook. Under ‘Happiest Memory’ he wrote Stevo dressing up as a woman on dress-up day! ‘Most Embarrassing Memory’ was Losing 14-3 to the teachers in after school soccer!
Under ‘Describe Yourself’, Sean wrote Extremely attractive male.