A few weeks passed, when Harry arter was well enough to look in the memory window that could open so many emotions. Rachel, his bride, was gently encouraging him to do so, while arter was not mentally able to take this step, as he struggled with the devastating loss of a stillborn daughter, whom he never saw. Now, in the silence of the house, he felt ready.
“I looked out the window without Rachel knowing I wanted to see on my own,” arter says. “I remember how I cried – it was the strangest feeling I ever had in my life, looking at a photograph of a small child whom I never saw, but loved her so much, at the same time. I just saw a beautiful little girl I felt so proud.”
Harry arter: ‘every game now I go out to play for her
On Saturday, when Carter runs for Bournemouth to Burnley, it will be exactly a year since that day, when Renee was born. Date – 10-12-2015 a tattoo on his right wrist and makes this interview arter asked, especially when he reflected on the past 12 months and the loss of her daughter, which is never far from his mind.
“Every day I think about it,” arter says, smiling. “And it’s weird because there are days when I feel like a normal person, or as someone who lost a child would feel. But then it will just hit you was driving and suddenly you see something that causes your mind. It is a strange feeling, and I don’t mind anymore. Even when I’m sad, I like this feeling.”
Listening to Carter speak so openly and boldly about what he’s been through, it was obvious that he had endured extremely difficult moments since our last meeting, back in January when he spoke of Renee for the first time. Arter admits that he was in a dark place for some time, in particular, at the end of last season, when mourning threatened to overwhelm him.
The good news is that 26-year-old is much more optimistic now, determined to see renée as a positive influence on his life enjoying his football at Bournemouth and worried that Rachel is pregnant and should give birth in February. “We will have another little girl that is very interesting and something that Rachel and I’m glad,” arter says. “Of course, we would be happy with a guy, but it’s nice for Renee to have a little sister.
“I just hope everybody doesn’t think we will have a new baby that we forget about Renee, because that is absolutely not true. Rachel is still upset about the situation, so I need to make sure that it remains strong – what she’s doing.”
Rachel was a priority arter last year. He saw the pain in her face every day and felt the need to “go into survival mode” to give her someone to lean on. By doing this arter now realizes that he was in the bottle his emotions and hold back the grief that manifest themselves in a way that made it hard to be around Bournemouth in the final two months of last season.
“I wasn’t in a good place, at this time,” arter says. “Physically I was not very – I think that takes a lot of stress on your body and I was always picking up minor injuries, but mentally I was completely in the wrong place. I was very angry towards people, I think, was a sense of loss take over. I freaked out and loved ones were the ones at work. I wasn’t mad at Rachel. I’m probably as much to keep at home, because I was caring for Rachel that I don’t mourn in my own way.
“Can I think about it now, because I feel a lot better than I was then, but at that point I honestly didn’t think that happened to me. I was just thinking, that’s all. All it took was one person to say something to me, and I was ready to kill the whole world.
“I probably should have been a bit more professional and decided that I need a little time to get my head straight. But I never asked during the day. I was upset, I shed tears, but probably not as much as I had and all that went in the wrong direction some three or four months later.
Harry arter got in Bournemouth to start, but says: ‘I’m glad I never made that decision’. Photograph: James Marsh/BPI/the Guardian
“Honestly, sometimes I felt a little jealous when I see guys with their families – many of them had children about that age, that was just a coincidence. It was strange – if I heard them talking about what to do with their children, for example, someone said, ‘I didn’t sleep today, it’s all in my head, I thought, ‘I’ll do anything to have a sleepless night.’
“I think at the time – and it was clearly not the case – I just felt like everyone forgot my situation and no one was really concerned about, when in reality they got tired and they probably just didn’t want to say every day: – how are you doing, Harry?’”
Looking back now, arter admits that he was probably “out” when he wrote on 10 June that “six months seems like six years.” All seemed to be unshakable for him at the time. He’s just withdrawn from the Republic of Ireland team due to injury, ruling him Euro 2016, and a few weeks ago, he started to cry before her father.
Arter mentions Jake Livermore, who has tested positive for cocaine 12 months after his son died in childbirth, and says that he can empathize with the “hull” of the player depressed and desperate state of mind. “I thought, ‘nothing could be worse than how I feel right now, ” arter said.
It was as if his life was at a crossroads and there was a brief moment in the summer when arter was thinking whether he should head in a new direction and to leave Bournemouth. “I wanted to change something in my life because I was unhappy; I have something you just need to change your way of thinking and, fortunately, he had not received the motion from Bournemouth, because I feel that it would be the worst thing for me,” arter said. “I love it here, and I was very lucky that I have a Manager like Eddie Howe, so I’m glad I made that decision”.
One slim ray of light in a very difficult period was the auction that arter held in April to raise money for 4Louis, a charity that is specified in a memory that means so much to him and Rachel. For the first time, arter and his bride something positive to focus on in relation to Renee.
“It was a big help,” he says. “With the charity, which was started by families who went through the same situation as we are, they take pictures of the child they take the child’s fingerprints, they do other little pieces, and I remember I said to Rachel after I looked in the stash that I would like to do something for them because of the feeling that they gave me is that I can’t physically go back. To donate some money is a small way of saying thank you.”
With the help and support of his Bournemouth team-mates and club staff, as well as players from other countries, arter raised just under £14,000 for charity and it was a special moment for him when he walked in the neonatal Department of a hospital in Southampton a few months later to give hugs cot.
“They put a little plaque on it saying in memory of Renee arter, which makes me proud of her,” arter says. “It’s a special bed, where, if the child dies, he is at a certain temperature to allow families to spend the night with your child. I would like to be able to do it at the time, probably one of my biggest regrets to have not seen Renee in real life. But I also know, given how I felt then, that I physically couldn’t do.”
It’s very touching hearing arter to talk openly about their emotions and their love for Rene, but he understands that some people may find it difficult to understand what he had experienced and the extent of his grief. “It is wrong, I think some people look at it and think: ‘well, you didn’t see the child so easier than if you had, or if you lost your child at a later age.’ I can understand why people might think that. But I can tell you now that I don’t feel that it would be otherwise,” he says.
The only thing arter is not considered back in January was that it helps others as well as himself when he first started talking about Renee. With 11 babies stillborn every day in the UK, he now recognizes the importance of raising awareness around traumatic and painful. “In social networks, I get a lot of messages from people who to thank for telling her story, saying that it helped them a lot,” he says. “Selfishly, when I did my first interview with you, I’m just saying what I feel, to get things off my chest. But now I am very happy that I can help people and I am willing to talk to anyone to make them feel better in their situation.”
Harry arter celebrates his goal Nathan ake, who gave Bournemouth a remarkable 4-3 win over Liverpool on Sunday. Photo: JASONPIX/Rex/shutterstock in
There’s a long list of people who have done so much to help arter, including close relatives, Howe and his teammates that it would be impossible to go through them all. But arter would like to make a special point to Express how he is grateful to Scott Parker, his brother-in-law, who “always at the end of the phone and showed me how strong you can be when he played for “West ham” in 2011, the day after his father died,” and Richard Hughes is Bournemouth’s first-team technical Director, and Hughes partner, Alina.
“Richard and Alina was incredible. No matter what, they were always there for us,” arter says. “They kept Rene all the things, all the clothes – we actually picked them up the other day for a newborn. So we are very grateful for their help.”
The arter, everything is beginning to return to the track just before the New season started. The news that Rachel was pregnant, gave them a huge lift. Not long after that arter opened his own football Academy in Bournemouth and got great pleasure from looking at the smiles on the faces of children. Most of all, however, he came to Renee, as a source of inspiration, and someone that should spur him in every aspect of his life.
“I would say that since August I haven’t looked back,” arter says. “I have used Renee as my motivation to come every day and work as hard as possible. That self drive to want to be the best was always there. But now my drive to become better as a person and as a player, that’s the difference. As much as I love Renee, to be here, the best thing now is for me to just try to make her proud”.
He knows that this will be an emotional moment when he returns from Burnley on Saturday evening and Church leaders with Rachel, to light candles in memory of Renee. This indicator positive attitude arter these days that he speaks of “celebrating your birthday” and cherishing those memories that he unlocked and not feeling gloomy and to keep them secret.
“Having Renee in my opinion, does not fill me with depression more. It makes me a little happy,” Carter says, smiling. “I like to think of her as any dad would say about his little girl. It’s probably down to feel much better in myself and seeing Rachel a little happier, because we both know that Renee wouldn’t want us to be sad. She would want us to be happy and to make sure that we look out for each other, and that’s certainly what we’re doing now.”