All posts tagged: Babyloss

What to say when a baby dies…

Knowing what to say when a baby dies can feel really challenging because people don’t want to get it wrong and they don’t want to cause further upset. Every grieving parent is different so there isn’t an accurate guide on what to do or say when a baby dies. One of the biggest comments can be “I don’t know what to say” – in my experience, be honest and say that, better than saying nothing at all. As a bereaved mother some of the things that helped me are: let parents talk about their baby. If they are talking about their baby, please let them and please do also talk about and mention their baby. Don’t ignore a baby’s existence because that hurts. let parents cry – they need to cry, it helps to release some of the pain. And sometimes they will have no choice, they will have no control over it. Please don’t tell them to shush. please don’t try to make parents feel better – you can’t, their baby is dead. There …

If your baby has just died

If your baby has just died, I am so so sorry. There just aren’t enough words to do this loss justice but I wanted to write something I wish I had been able to read when my newborn son died 13 years ago. Everyone’s experience of loss and grief is different but if this is useful to just one grieving parent, then I’m glad I wrote it. If your baby has just died, there’s every chance you are feeling a combination of numb, shock, denial, anger, exhaustion and pain. The range of feeling can change quickly from hour to hour and its intensity might take your breath away. You might know why your baby died or it could have been completely without any warning, either way you could well be asking yourself why? why you? why your baby? Those early days and weeks can feel like the loneliest place in the world. I remember feeling like I was in a bubble, watching the world continue on as normal around me while mine had been shattered. …

Surviving Babyloss

In the first few days and early weeks after my son died, I wished to feel normal again. I longed, not just for the pain to ease, but just to feel like myself again. It felt like I lived in a bubble, everyone around me was living their normal lives but I was in a very lonely, isolated bubble of vulnerability and pain. I have never felt pain like it – physical pain, mental pain that affected how much I could do, how much I could cope with, how much I could enjoy, how much I could focus on. I felt like I could break at any moment – each day was about forcing myself to get out of bed, to do something rather than just wallow; to do something rather than just desperately want my baby back. There was an aching in my arms for the baby I  couldn’t hold and a physical pain in my heart as it ached for what I had lost. In those early weeks I wasn’t sure how much …

birth and new baby newcastle and tyneside

My experience of birth trauma…

I experienced birth trauma after the birth of my third baby 12 years ago, which left me with PTSD. Initially it was assumed that I was ill because my son – who was born with a severe heart defect – died during heart surgery when he was 3 days old. But it was only when I started seeing a psychotherapist who specialised in grief and trauma that we worked out that beyond the grief and trauma of losing a child, there was also birth trauma. It was a complex trauma of grief with the impact of an emotional pregnancy and the death of my baby. Being pregnant with a baby who had two life-threatening defects was emotional torture in many ways – with additional scans, discussions with consultants, a great deal of hope, a great deal of despair and helplessness, along with plans for his birth, if he lived that long and an attempt to prepare for early life in the heart unit. If Jamie had lived, we faced months in hospital with him so there …

It is CHD Awareness Month – here’s my story…

February is Congenital Heart Defect month – Here is the story of  my son Jamie… My 20-week scan during my third pregnancy did not go to plan – a potential defect with my baby’s oesophagus was highlighted and I was referred to the Fetal Medicine Unit at the RVI for a more detailed scan. They too thought there was an issue with my baby’s oesophagus but they also thought there was a problem with his heart – both would need monitoring and so my rollercoaster journey of hospital appointments and huge emotion began. Every couple of weeks I was scanned, my baby’s heart was thoroughly checked but there was no agreement on what the defect was. After one scan, it was even thought that there was no heart defect. But the next scan confirmed that something wasn’t right. The majority agreement among the brilliant team of consultants was that my baby had hypoplastic left heart syndrome – the left side of his heart was not developing properly. This is a life threatening defect. I was …