How I feel – 22 Months On

How has it been 22 months since you left us? On one hand time seems to have flown by and on the other it has gone in slow motion. It’s a very bizarre thing! I am trying to find the words to say how I feel; I have written and rewritten this so many times, and the truth is… I just don’t know!! I still have so many emotions, and so many triggers. People don’t tend to see the real me! They see the happy, strong, organised me; but they don’t see the ‘me’ behind closed doors! They don’t see the ‘me’ who is jealous of every single pregnancy announcement, and the don’t see the ‘me’ who suffers with anxiety, who is so protective of my other children, and paranoid about something happening to them that I had a panic attack when there was an incident at my son’s school… my son wasn’t even involved but it still caused a major panic attack. These are the things that I keep to myself, these are the feelings that people don’t realise affect me, this is the ‘me’ that I tend to hide.

Because I’m still not sure exactly how I feel, I will start by talking about the feelings and emotions that haunt me, before talking about the positive way I feel… as I’m sure that the good outweighs the bad!

After so many losses, I am still triggered by pregnancy announcements and birth announcements, I still struggle to see new born babies, and although I recently held my friends baby (who I adore) it is hard. I am sorry if this comes across badly; I am truly very happy when someone is expecting, and when their baby is born; but I still feel that pang of jealousy… I don’t show it, but it’s there! My anxiety became quite bad recently, and I finally (after months of my husband pleading) saw the doctor, I am now on anxiety meds and waiting for an appointment for therapy to help with my panic attacks… This was an important but difficult step for me to take, as I like everyone to think that I’m in control and everything is ok!

Now we move to my other children. As you know, I have 3 boys Brett (18), Brendon (12) and Aiden (4); all very different characters but all lovely in their own way. Brett is going through a hard time at the moment, we are trying to get an ‘all over’ assessment by the doctor (we have an appointment tomorrow), because since Christmas he has been really unwell. We’ve been to the doctors 3 times so far, but I’m hoping that by seeing a different doctor tomorrow we may get better results! He needs referrals to lots of different departments to find out why he’s so unwell; and hopefully get him back to college. I worry about him so much because he IS very unwell, and we don’t seem to be getting answers! My middle son Brendon is very outgoing, he enjoys sports and loves to take a football to the park with his friends. This causes me so much anxiety, I ‘have’ to take a step back and let him have fun… but it’s so hard! I like him where I can see him, and I can’t see him if he’s out playing! I try not to make it obvious; going out with your friends is a good thing… but to the ‘me’ that I hide, it is scary! Now we move on to Aiden; he is a ‘character’… that’s they only way to describe him!!! But, my goodness he seems to find danger at every turn! He is always hurting himself, knocking things over, bumping into things… these are normal things for a 4 year old, I know that, but I still can’t help feeling worried! He is probably my biggest worry at the moment, as he doesn’t seem to recognise danger, and he is always putting himself in dangerous situations (Opening the oven door, running in the road, putting his fingers in the hinges of the door etc).

Losing a child changes you, there is no doubt about that… but one of the biggest changes at the moment is the paranoia that something might happen to one of my other children… and this I find hard to shake.

Now I’m going to move on to the things I am grateful for. I am very thankful that I have such an amazing, loving family. Paul and I have become closer throughout the losses, and as I know this can tear relationships apart, I am really pleased that this hasn’t happened with us! My children are happy and healthy (apart from the health concerns with Brett, but we will sort that one out!!), and we are very close as a family; we always keep the lines of communication open so that helps a lot! I am also grateful that I can speak to my mum and step-dad, my dad and step-mum and paul’s mum and dad about anything and everything! We really do have a fantastic family and I owe a lot of my strength and courage to them! They have supported me with anything that I wanted to do, and been there to wipe the tears!

My friends are amazing! I have both friends that I see, and online friends in the loss community… after losing Sophie I ‘lost’ quite a few friends and was upset for a long time; however, the friends that I have now are the most amazing people! It is true that you find out who your friends are when something tragic happens!

I am really happy that I have been offered an unconditional place to study Midwifery at Canterbury Christchurch University in September. Not many people would be happy to receive an ‘Anatomy and Physiology’ book, or a blood pressure monitor for Christmas… but for me… I was over the moon!! I’m excited and nervous!

Sophie has also given me the opportunity to help other people, which although it hurts like hell sometimes, I feel very privileged to be able to do it! Sophie’s Angels has grown so much recently, and although biased, I feel I have the most amazing admin team! They are always there for people, and we all truly care about the members of our group; some of which have become good friends, or formed friendships on the group. It has been great to see the group change and develop! Our Angel Sophie has also grown which is fantastic! More people are hearing Sophie’s story and more people are interacting with the page. Our Twitter Page is slowly growing and I’m finding this to be good way to communicate with a range of organisations and people. I am thankful that we have had media exposure, and were in the Mirror Online twice last week! This article focuses on Sophie’s Story, and this one focuses on the things not to say to grieving parents.

I am extremely grateful with the support that has been shown for the Petition, there are far too many preventable stillbirths and this need to change. At the time of writing this we have 3,069 signatures… still a long way to go, but it is rising and it is gaining awareness! If you could sign and share it then it would be really appreciated.

So, yes, there are now many things that I am grateful for! And although I still get ‘triggered’ and find some things really tough, I can see that we have a happy and positive future ahead!

Forever loved and forever missed my gorgeous girl, but you are making a difference and you legacy will live on xxx

The Butterfly Awards

The Butterfly Awards are opening their nominations soon, and I have been asked a few times since yesterday about this event! So I will try to explain! The Butterfly Awards is a ceremony which brings awareness and helps to break the taboo surrounding loss. The award ceremony is a black tie/cocktail dress event which aims to celebrate the achievements of people, volunteers, groups or professionals, who support or raise awareness about this. The awards will be held on 27th October 2018 at Chesford Grange Hotel, Warwick.

The Butterfly Awards 2018 Award Categories 🦋

  • Inspirational Father
  • Inspirational Mother
  • Bereavement Worker
  • Author / Blogger
  • Awareness Advocate
  • Healthcare Professional
  • UK Support Organisation
  • Cherished Keepsake
  • Best Hospital Bereavement Care
  • Midwife of the Year
  • Most Valuable Contribution
  • The Thank You Award

People, organisations and groups can be nominated for more than one category, so get your thinking caps on and work out who you plan to nominate in advance!! Voting will open soon, but the date hasn’t been confirmed yet! I will let you know when voting is open, and you can vote for anyone who you feel has helped you, raised awareness etc.

If you want to follow The Butterfly Awards for up to date information, please visit: https://www.facebook.com/TheButterflyAwards/

And to view the website, which should be updated soon, please visit: https://babylossstar.co.uk/2016/07/29/babyloss-star-awards/

 

An Open Letter to a Grieving Dad

I am so sorry that you are in this devastating situation, I am so sorry that you have lost your precious baby and I wish I could take your pain away and make everything ok again. It is hard being a dad walking this path, everyone is asking how your partner is coping, how are your other children coping, if there’s anything they can do to help your partner and do you think she would benefit from extra support like bereavement counselling. You answer this questions, you field the phone calls, you try to protect her and comfort her; while all the time inside you are screaming ‘what about me!? I’ve lost a baby too!’.

As a man you feel you need to be strong, you feel protective towards your partner, and you feel that you need to give her a shoulder to cry on; well, I need you to know that in this situation you don’t need to be strong, you can be protective whilst also grieving your loss too, and you also need to have a shoulder to cry on, to vent at, to shout and scream about how unfair this is… because it IS unfair and it IS ok to express that, to let it out, and to hate the world.

Right now, you might have more questions than answers; you may not have received the test results yet or they might not give a definite reason for your baby passing. This limbo is horrible, it really is, and it is my hope that that one day you will find the answers that you seek. I know that you probably feel numb, angry and upset, and I also know that you feel you will never be able to accept what has happened… how could you? How could you possibly accept that your baby will not be coming home? How could you ever accept that you had to leave your baby with strangers, cold and alone, while you returned home to an empty house, and a nursery full of things that your baby should be using? I also know that as time goes on, more people will almost expect you to carry on (much sooner that your partner), they will expect you to return to work (maybe before you are ready), they will expect you to be the strong one… I want you (even though it’s hard) to block these people out, there is no time limit on grief, it ebbs and flows; these are people that fortunately don’t know how it feels to lose a child; they are the lucky ones.

I want you to know, even though you feel like it, you are not alone. I want you to know that you and your baby matter, and I need you to know that there are people who you can talk to, other dads who have been through the same, devastating and life changing thing… because losing a child is life changing, and no matter what others might say, things will never be ‘normal’ again… but you will, in time, find a ‘new normal’. One where you find ways to honour your baby, whilst also looking towards the future.

I know (from my husband) that as a loss dad it can be very hard, people need to realise that you lost a child too, and you are hurting. Please share your baby and your experience as much as you want; your baby is not just a statistic… he or she is a baby with a family who love and miss him/her, and therefore he/she deserves to be recognised and remembered. I know that, occasionally, as a loss dad, you may receive negative comments when you talk about your baby, or share their photos. These comments may put you off sharing, you may feel like you ‘have to move on’ and not share any more, you may then feel more isolated, upset and alone.

When I first started to share Sophie I received comments like this, mostly from people who care a great deal and thought that I was torturing myself. At first, it really upset me, and I stopped sharing Sophie’s story and her photos; but after a short while I realised that sharing her, as much as I share my other children, was helping me and not hindering me! If people don’t want to look then they are welcome to scroll past, and the positive comments certainly outweighed the negative, which made me happy! For the people who do post the odd unhelpful comment, I no longer feel upset or angry; instead, I feel grateful, grateful that they don’t know, and don’t understand, what it’s like to lose a child; because I would never wish this on any one.

I want to let you know that it’s ok to not be ok, I say this to people on Sophie’s Angels because it’s true… sometimes breathing IS enough! Sometimes you may not feel like doing anything, or you may want to do things to keep busy… both of these are perfectly ok. Taking things one step at a time, taking each minute as it comes… all these things will help you to get through today; and that’s ALL you need to do.

Lastly, I want to let you know that it is ok to not be ‘strong’; it is ok to shout, scream, cry; it is ok to shut yourself away and it is ok to not want to talk about your baby if that helps. However YOU need to grieve is ok, everyone grieves differently; and sometimes we can be triggered by things long after we ‘think’ we’ve finished grieving… because grieving a child never really ends, it ebbs and flows like the waves. However, there will come a time, when you find yourself smiling again, you find yourself wanting to look to the future, and you find yourself enjoying life once more; you may not see it now, but it will happen.

Lots of love and hugs to you, your family, and your precious angel

Maria

xxx

If you feel that you would like to join Sophie’s Angels, then please click here.

An Open Letter to a Grieving Mum

I am so deeply sorry that you find yourself in this awful and devastating situation, I wish I could take your pain away and make everything ok again. I know that right now you have more questions than answers, and I am hoping that one day, you will find the answers that you seek. I know that you probably feel numb, angry and upset, and I also know that you feel you will never be able to accept what has happened… how could you? How could you possibly accept that your baby will not be coming home? How could you ever accept that you had to leave your baby with strangers, cold and alone, while you returned home to an empty house, and a nursery full of things that your baby should be using?

I want you to know, even though you feel like it, you are not alone. I want you to know that you and your baby matter, and I need you to know that there are people who you can talk to, other people who have been through the same, devastating and life changing thing… because losing a child is life changing, and no matter what others might say, things will never be ‘normal’ again… but you will, in time, find a ‘new normal’.

Please share your baby as much as you want; I know that occasionally, as a loss mum, you may receive negative comments when you talk about your baby, or share their photos. These comments may put you off sharing, you may feel like you ‘have to move on’ and not share any more, you may then feel more isolated. When I first started to share Sophie I received comments like this, mostly from people who care a great deal and thought that I was torturing myself, sometimes from people that were just nasty, or didn’t understand. At first, it really upset me, and I stopped sharing Sophie’s story and her photos; but after a short while I realised that sharing her, as much as I share my other children, was helping me and not hindering me! If people don’t want to look then they are welcome to scroll past, and the positive comments certainly outweighed the negative, which made me happy! For the people who do post the odd unhelpful comment, I no longer feel upset or angry; instead, I feel grateful, grateful that they don’t know, and don’t understand, what it’s like to lose a child; because I would never wish this on any one.

Lastly, I want to say, that its ok to not be ok, I say this to people on Sophie’s Angels because it’s true… sometimes breathing IS enough! Sometimes you may not feel like doing anything… that is perfectly ok, housework etc can wait! Taking things one step at a time, taking each minute as it comes… all these things will help you to get through today; and that’s ALL you need to do.

Lots of love and hugs to you, your family, and your precious angel

Maria
xxx

Things to say, and not say, to grieving parents

I asked the members of Sophie’s Angels what things have stuck in their minds, following the loss of their precious children. I wanted this post to be raw, largely unedited, and from a grieving parents perspective. Yes – I can write the things that trigger me, or make me feel better, but as we all grieve differently I wanted a larger input on this. Many things were said to me when I lost Sophie, mostly people meant well, but even people that say things ‘out of love’ don’t realise how hurtful their words can be. I have previously (in July 2017) written a blog post on ‘Things not to say to a loss mum’ which you can read here; but I wanted to write an updated post with the helpful, as well as the not so helpful, comments that parents receive.

Are you ok?

Now this is obviously coming from a caring place, however this can be a real trigger for some! One of the members on my group replied to this comment with ‘of course I’m not ok what a stupid question’ and another member said ‘I used to reply with a curt no’. A better way to ask this question would be ‘How are you feeling?’

Are you going to try for another baby?

A member was asked this 2 days after losing her angel! 1. It is none of your business, 2. It is none of your business and 3. It is still none of your business would be my reply to this!

My midwife walked in for my post labour visit and asked me what I had

‘I thought that was really insensitive considering he was stillborn. She had my notes and they even stated his name so I was quite annoyed by that’, I am so sorry this happened, it shouldn’t happen! I know from my experience that I had to contact the community midwives and explain what had happened to Sophie, because the hospital didn’t let them know that she was stillborn, and therefore the postnatal home visit checks that I was told to expect didn’t happen until I contacted them myself!

It was Gods will/It wasn’t meant to be/Everything happens for a reason

This is really upsetting and triggers a lot of people (including myself), please think before you say this! What possible reason could be good enough for a child to die? How do you know it wasn’t meant to be? Think before you speak!

He’s in a better place

Excuse me… nope, nope, nope!! The best place is ALIVE with a loving mummy and daddy. Do not ever say this… it is not helpful one little bit!

You’re still young, you can try again

And your point is??? Do you really think that plays any bearing on how I feel right now! Another pregnancy won’t replace my son/daughter so what’s the point in even saying this?

Be grateful/lucky that you have the other two

One replied to this comment with exactly what I was thinking! She said ‘I actually started to respond back and which of your kids would you choose to lose as you actually have x amount’. I have had this said to me by well-meaning people a fair amount, these are generally people that don’t (thank goodness) know what it feels like to give birth to a lifeless baby.

He was to pretty for this earth, he will come back as a girl

I actually fail to see how this is in any way helpful!

9 months and your still crying, it will get better

I’m sorry but what time limit would you like to put on my grieving? I lost my child, I will NEVER get over it and I will NEVER forget. One member wrote ‘I hate people that say this. We’ll never ever be over it. It’ll stay with us forever. We just learn to live with the pain and grief. So it gets easier but it’s always there’.

At least you have your daughter Sophia

Just because we already have a child it doesn’t mean our angel was any less Important or loved

One member wrote: ‘I don’t believe there are any truly good things to say but saying nothing and having people avoid you because they don’t want to upset you or don’t know what to say is harder. Are you ok? Seems silly and those that ask it feel silly asking it but they have taken the time to check in with you and to let them know they are thinking about you. I appreciate that every single time. People want to give you comfort there just isn’t anything out there that can. The reality is the way i am feeling there are no words to describe they haven’t been invented yet but i am grateful to my Patrick for being my son and to every single person who has shown me kindness, support and love since losing him (also losing him sounds daft as I didn’t forget where I put him)’

This seems to be mainly a post about what not to say! And there is a reason for this, the hurtful things that have been said (even by well-wishers), stick in your mind far more than the good, helpful things. I will try to list a few here:

  • How are you feeling?
  • Is there anything I can do to help?
  • I’m going to the shops, do you need anything?
  • When you’re ready I’d love to hear more about/see photos of your angel?
  • Do you need any help planning the funeral?
  • What are you planning to have at the funeral?
  • Can I come with you next time you visit your angels forever bed?, I’d love to lay some flowers
  • Would you like me to look after your other children so you can rest?

Above all, allow the grieving parents to speak freely about their angel, offer them a safe, non-judgemental shoulder to lean on; loss parents tend to love talking about their baby, but they can shy away from it because other people feel uncomfortable, by offering them time to talk, show pictures, laugh and cry, you will help them tremendously.

 

Providing Comfort – Bear for an Angel

Bear for an Angel is an amazing organisation which supports grieving families following the loss of their child, no matter what age or gestation. Bear for an Angel was founded by Michelle McGunnagle who has, herself, suffered several losses and you can read her full story here.

Latest figures show that 1 in 4 women suffer miscarriage, missed miscarriage, ectopic or molar pregnancies, and as early losses are often not acknowledged by many hospitals or care providers these families, often in shock, have to go home with empty arms and a broken heart.

Michelle McGunnagle says ‘At Bear for an Angel we believe that every baby is precious and should be remembered, acknowledged and is loved no matter what gestation or age. We provide comfort & acknowledgement to bereaved families affected by the devastation of pregnancy, baby or child loss. We donate ‘Bags of Love’ to Ipswich hospital epau (although we’d like to offer these to more hospitals and funeral directors eventually), and we also offer our ‘no sew’ memory bear packages to bereaved families throughout the UK’.

Bags of Love:

  • A tiny teddy bear
  • A tea light
  • A mini acknowledgement of life
  • A mini quote scroll
  • Our bear poem
  • Butterfly bubbles
  • A tibeton silver charm
  • All inside a organza bag

 

Our Memory Bear Package

  • An 8 inch teddy bear skin
  • A bag of stuffing
  • A wishing star
  • Our Bear for and Angel poem card
  • A tea light or small candle
  • A teddy bear certificate

Bears for an Angel use the slogan ‘Comfort in a Cuddle’, their bears are a cuddly companion to hug, filling empty arms and helping grieving hearts to find comfort while acknowledging the lives of precious babies sadly gone too soon. Another fantastic thing about these bears is that they are ‘no sew’, which means that a sound device containing the baby’s heartbeat, a spoken message from someone, a scent chip, a vibrating heart or a few ashes or keepsake can be added inside.

There is also the chance to help another bereaved family whilst helping the memory of your babies live on through our Give a bear option which is such a wonderful gift to give. Beyond the bear there is our emotional support network via social media which families find invaluable and is run by bereaved parents so we understand what you are going through.

Our Aims are:

  • Provide an emotional support network via our Facebook & Twitter pages to ease the isolation of baby loss.
  • Connect grieving families via our social media pages & give a bear option a wonderful gift to give to another bereaved family.
  • Provide funding towards our no sew bear packages to provide comfort at times of sadness and to make memories in the UK after any loss, up to 21 years.
  • Provide free bags of love to bereaved parents after loss in early pregnancy to provide acknowledgement in the UK.
  • Provide free acknowledgements of life via download for any loss who didn’t receive any birth certificate.
  • Provide free memorial pages in partnership with Much Loved.
  • Raise awareness of pregnancy, baby & child loss by events, flyers and advertising.

Achievements:

  • We have grown to over 11,000 members on our Facebook page and growing
  • We have helped over 600 families receive a package
  • We funded 36 Xmas comfort packages (DEC 2016)
  • We donated 14 bags of love to Ipswich hospitals epau

Michelle is passionate about baby and child loss and wants Bear for an Angel bags of love in every hospital epu, bereavement suites and silent rooms no mother should go home without anything to acknowledge their precious baby.

Please visit Bear for an Angel if you have suffered a loss, or if you can support this amazing organisation in any way. You can visit their website here.

To ensure that this fantastic support continues they need as many supporters as possible to help with fundraising. If you feel you can help in any way, then please click here.

You can also find them on Facebook, or follow them on Twitter

 

 

Exciting News!!!

This is the first post that I have written this year; I just haven’t been able to find the words! I’ve tried, but the words never seen to come! But I thought I would start this year’s blog with some rather exciting news! You are, yet again, making waves my girl! You are starting to make a difference to so many people! And now the Mirror Online Newspaper is planning to tell your story whist promoting the petition that I set up. This means that more people will know who you are, more people will be able to access support and friendship through your support group and more people will understand that there needs to be change to prevent stillbirths.

You may not be here, but you are making a difference. I will love you and miss you for eternity, but your tiny footsteps are certainly making huge imprints on this world, and I couldn’t be prouder. The petition to halve the amount of stillbirths can be found here, and if you have been affected by miscarriage, stillbirth or infant death then please feel free to come and join us at Sophie’s Angels.

Sleep peacefully Sophie, until we meet again xxx

The Second Christmas Without You

This is the first post I have written for a while, I just haven’t been able to find the words! I have wanted to write for a long time but the time simply hasn’t seemed right! As we approach the second Christmas without you, the need to write is much greater.

This year seems different to last year and I’m not sure that I’m dealing well with it all! Last year I wanted to completely ignore Christmas.. I couldn’t, of course, because of your brothers! If I had my way then I wouldn’t have celebrated at all; it just didn’t seen right when such an important part of our family was missing, my little girl, my princess. I was so exhausted by it all (painting on a fake smile for relatives, trying to appear happy for the boys, buying things for their stockings when I knew I should have also been buying gifts for you), that when Christmas day was over I refused to attend any more Christmas celebrations… I just couldn’t! This cause a lot of upset from family members, but I had to look after my own heart.

This year seems different. Aiden is now 4 and full of excitement, getting up at 5.30am every day as he wants to open his advent calendar! Brendon is 12 and really looking forward to Christmas, and Brett is 18 so Christmas will now be a different time for him! More adult! I feel excited, I really do! I can’t help it! I am excited to see the boys open their presents, spending time with your daddy and brothers over the holidays, and I’m actually looking forward to the year ahead! But then I get this pang of guilt… how can I get excited when you are not here? The only thing I can do for you now is decorate your forever bed with Christmas decorations, and keep your memory alive by connecting with people and offering support via Sophie’s Angels. How can I be happy, excited, looking forward to things? That must make me a terrible mum! But I am, and I hope you understand that doesn’t mean I don’t miss you, I will miss you for as long as I live. You are the first person I think about in the morning, and the last person I think about at night, but I do also have 3 other children and I do need to make an effort for them.

This is the second Christmas without you, and the emotions are different, but the way I miss you is still the same. Sleep peacefully Sophie, until we meet again xxx

angels in heaven

HELLP Syndrome

What is HELLP Syndrome?

HELLP Syndrome usually occurs during the third trimester, but around a third of cases occur after the baby is born, rarely it can occur before 21 weeks of pregnancy; it is a rare liver and blood clotting disorder that affects around 1 in 125 women during pregnancy or after giving birth. It is a serious and potentially life threatening condition so please contact your care provider if you exhibit the signs or symptoms.

What is HELLP Syndrome?

HELLP stands for:

H – haemolysis (the red blood cells break down)

EL – elevated liver enzymes (proteins) (a high number of enzymes in the liver is a sign of liver damage)

LP – low platelet count (platelets help the blood to clot)

Symptoms of HELLP Syndrome

The symptoms of HELLP Syndrome are very similar to the symptoms observed with pre-eclampsia (the two conditions are often related). You may experience one or more of these symptoms:

  • Headache
  • Nausea/vomiting/indigestion with pain after eating
  • Abdominal or chest tenderness and/or upper right side pain (from liver distention)
  • Shoulder pain
  • Pain when breathing deeply
  • Bleeding
  • Changes in vision
  • Swelling/weight gain

Your midwife or doctor will check for the following signs during your antenatal appointments:

  • High blood pressure
  • Protein in the urine

The most common reason for HELLP becoming fatal is liver rupture or stroke (cerebral oedema or cerebral haemorrhage), which can usually be prevented when caught in time.

How HELLP Syndrome affects babies

If a baby weighs at least two pounds at birth, they have the same survival rate and health outcome of non-HELLP babies of the same size. Unfortunately, the outcome for babies weighing less than two pounds at birth is not as good; these babies may need longer hospital stays and will have a higher chance of needing ventilator care because their lungs did not have enough chance to develop in the womb. Around 1 in 10 babies born to women with HELLP will pass away and this is often link to their prematurity.

Treatment of HELLP Syndrome

With treatment, the mortality rate of women with HELLP Syndrome is around 1 in 100, although complications can occur in about 1 in 4 women. The only way to treat the condition is for the baby to be born as soon as possible. Many women suffering from HELLP syndrome will also require a transfusion of some form of blood product (red cells, platelets or plasma).

What can I do to prevent HELLP Syndrome?

Unfortunately, there’s currently no way to prevent this illness. Things that could help to make sure it’s diagnosed early are:

  • Regular antenatal check-ups during pregnancy
  • Inform your midwife about any previous high-risk pregnancies or family history of HELLP Syndrome, pre-eclampsia, or other hypertensive disorders
  • Understand the warning signs and talk to your midwife or Doctor immediately
  • Trust yourself when “something just doesn’t feel right”.

A Mother’s Promise

When I make a promise to one of my children I will move mountains to make sure I keep that promise, a mother is someone that the children are supposed to be able to depend on… and I sure as hell am not going to break a promise I make to one of my children.

When Sophie was born I made 3 promises. The first was that I would always love and remember her… that one is easy to keep because she will always be my daughter and I will always love her; the second promise was that we would find out why she died; this one was slightly harder because the post mortem can back largely inconclusive… she was perfectly healthy which was hard to bear, however, they were pretty certain that she died when a blood clot restricted her oxygen; the third promise was that I would make sure that other people know about her, help to support other mums who’s babies have died and campaign for safer pregnancies and births to try to stop other people going through this… Well… my girl! As said your mummy will never break that promise and through the Facebook page, the support group and this blog many, many people now know who you are, your story and have felt supported in their own grief.

I am shocked and humbled by how many people have visited this blog and amazed by how many different countries your story has reached. People from all over the world know who you are and I am very proud to be your mummy. I will never give up and I will never stop fighting to reduce that rates of stillbirth, and I will always help and support the mummies of your angel friends.

 Love always xxx