McCann's secret diary recording her private hell as she struggled to
cope with her daughter's disappearance was revealed yesterday.
The journal describes how she was overwhelmed by 'black thoughts' as she
contemplated Madeleine's ordeal and her anger at those who judged her
'calm and controlled' behaviour at press conferences.
In one entry, the depths of her anguish are laid bare as she addresses
her missing daughter: 'My sweetheart, my darling, my love, my companion.
I love you more than anything.
'I'm going to dream that I'm lying by your side - moments I'll always
cherish and I long to have again.'
The 40-year-old GP also attacks the Portuguese police as 'morose' and
outlines her frustration at their uninspiring hunt for the
three-year-old less than 24 hours after she vanished.
Mrs McCann started the 135-page journal a few days before Madeleine went
missing from the apartment in the Algarve resort of Praia da Luz where
the family were holidaying.
A copy of the journal was later seized by Portuguese police and selected
extracts leaked to the local media in an apparent attempt to depict Mrs
McCann as cold and emotionless.
But on Sunday, the diary was published in full after a Portuguese
journalist, angry at the alleged smear campaign, handed a copy to The
News of the World.
In it, Mrs McCann gives a detailed account of putting Madeleine to bed
on May 3 last year, before heading out to dinner with her husband and a
group of friends.
She wrote: 'Brush teeth. To the bedroom with the kids.
'M pulls away and puts her head on pillow. Kisses goodnight for M.
Pulled the door to as far as possible without shutting it.
'Silence. Dry hair. Put make-up on. Glass of wine. Restaurant.'
She later describes the frantic hunt for her daughter after discovering
Madeleine had vanished as they ate.
'No sleep, Gerry and I started looking through the streets around 06.00
as it was starting to get light. Nobody around. Why not? Desperate.
'Minutes seem like hours. Outside of the apartments masses of people
asking questions about that night and for descriptions of Madeleine.
Mrs McCann also describes the scene later that day when they were taken
to the police station in nearby Portimao to give statements.
She wrote: 'Nobody from the police introduced themselves.
Nobody offered us a drink or food. No sympathy was shown and far from
'The police officer who took us by car to the station was the one asking
the questions and afterwards typed the answers on a typewriter. Morose.'
Mrs McCann also records her anger at the constant questions about how
she managed to appear so 'calm and controlled' during appeals.
She wrote: 'They know so little.
'Nobody should judge or criticise because, unless they have already been
in this situation, they have NO IDEA how they would be and certainly NO
IDEA how painful it is. NO IDEA AT ALL.'
And she tells of her private agony over her daughter's ordeal, noting on
June 1: 'Can't stop thinking about Madeleine, about her fear and pain.
'How can I go on knowing that her life could have ended like this? This
week I have been quite overtaken by black thoughts.'
She also reveals why she took the agonising decision to wash her
daughter's toy Cuddle Cat: 'Today I washed Cuddle Cat. I was hoping not
to do it until Madeleine returns, but it was quite dirty and smelly, but
unfortunately without the smell of Madeleine on it.'
A month after her daughter's disappearance, she describes how thinking
about paedophiles 'makes me want to tear at my own skin'.
She adds: 'I was never in favour of the death penalty, but these people
should be kept in a secure place.
'Whose human rights are more important? Those of a paedophile or of a
vulnerable, defenceless child?'