Sensitivity

I’ve spoke of this before but after a loss for  many the natural progression is to have another baby. A rainbow baby: the beauty after the storm. But as we’ve also explored this doesn’t happen to everyone. Before you think here we go again today I want to talk about announcing this.

How do you tell the world you’re expecting again? Or maybe you’re expecting but never lost a baby and have friends that do. Well anyway you wish really but have you thought about how it affects others?

Facebook groups are rife with announcements. The title stillbirth/ baby loss seems to bypass them and they post up pregnancy tests, scan pictures and even live babies.

Friends announce on their facebook all happy which is fab but some rules to consider:

Timing

Will they want to know before everyone? or would they prefer to wait.

Maybe they don’t want to know as soon as you take that test especially if they just got their new cycle.  Don’t assume telling them early lessens the pain because sometimes it’s one less person to confide and find support in.

Of course many angel mums deal with the news a lot better. It gives them hope they may wish to hear of it from day one and receive updates but this still applies to them as they may get upset if you wait, if you tell them with everyone else. They may feel avoided, left out and like they’re are being treated as an outcast. They may wish to be there incase it goes wrong and they may wish to be there when it goes well.

Consider how early you tell them. Angel mums know more than anyway you could lose that pregnancy. It really messes with a persons head thinking you might lose your baby so consider telling them later on just before you announce but not as soon as you tested.

When and Where

Consider how you tell them.

One to one may be upsetting whether it’s face to face, over the phone in a text or other.  Maybe not face to face is better for some as they aren’t put on the spot. Made to feel they have to congratulate you when all they feel is numb or shock and extreme sadness. Words are easier to write than to speak whilst wanting to cry and scream.

Also though some may be offended you think a text is ok to tell them such big news they wish to hear your voice or see you when told so they can be there for you.

How

Consider your wording. We were told this week of a pregnancy and it was done so flippantly, so hurtfully I felt a little offended how they went about it ( this is not a friend so if you’re reading thinking was this me? It wasn’t). Don’t lie. If you are asked it’s important not to lie to save their feelings. If they’re asking they feel the need to know. Give them space if they need it though as sometimes suspecting news is easier than confirming that news. By lying you create mistrust and again lack of support for their situation.

You may be thinking I basically just can’t tell them. You can but also allow them the illusion no one else is getting pregnant a little longer. Are they struggling more at the moment. Are they trying for a baby and maybe due a period. Do they have a difficult appointment.

Also don’t chose a time they may be feeling happier. Feeling happier doesn’t mean they feel ok and doesn’t mean they feel positive. Chose a time they seem more positive as it will wash over them easier and they will be able to respond to you more honestly.

This may seem a little escapism but consider the pain. The pain of losing a baby, a child. Then imagine the pain of trying to conceive. Then imagine the pain of infertility. Roll that into one and your close to how it feels watching the world get pregnant whilst your not.

Don’t assume to know them just be sensitive please. If you can’t handle the way a friend deals with pregnancy news then maybe it’s time to goes your different ways as a friend should understand even if they don’t get it.

 

tracy

 

My favourite what if

image

I saw this picture today and it sparked all the what ifs I have off.

what if: I had attended my 26 week scare scan. Would you be alive now? Would they scanned me and delivered you after a few weeks?

What if they had delivered you early? Would you have survived? Would you have died in an incubator? Would you be here now with us? Would you be ill from your prematurity?

what if they noticed from the start? Could they have prolonged the pregnancy enough to allow you to grow and survive? Would you still have died?

what if I went when I spotted? What if I went when you moved a bit less? Would they have delivered you then? Would I have met you alive? Would you still have died?

what if you had no problems? Would have been early like your brothers? Would you have been on time or late? Would I have got my VBAC?

what if you were here? You’d be 6 months old now. Weaning, holding things, sitting up, laughing, gurgling, making the world fall in love with you. Wrapping your daddy round your little finger with that sweet face

what if you had survived early you’d be 8 months old now doing even more maybe even crawling.

What if you never died? What would your favourite be? Would you turn in a dress and pink loving girl or a dinosaur loving Tom boy? Would you have let me dress you in girly clothes? Would you have let daddy style your hair?

what if this was all different? Who would meet and fall in love with? Would you have grown your hair? Would you lose your curls? Would you have sung? Or drawn? Or danced or all 3?

truth is you are everything we want you to be because you can’t be anything else.

In our dreams of you there is long flowing locks, twirly skirts, pretty eyes. You’d be boisterous but sweet and kind. You would enjoy singing and dancing and swirling. You’d be friendly and confident loving all who you met. You’d have increased the fun and laughter, the love and the smiles. You’d have given us hope that beauty exists. Because I’ll never know you are the perfect combination of us all. Our good parts are you, the cute unique things we possess are you. The unknowns are you.

Elva, you’ll always be our favourite what if xx

 

tracy

 

 

8 months

So its just past 8 months and I did mention the timing in the last blog but well here’s another.

On Friday I talked to someone and she asked how things were. I told her worse than they were as I’ve been left with severe anxiety and it’s making life difficult. She said have you tried counselling which I have then her great advice was don’t dwell look at the positives!

Grief isn’t dwelling as we know so it did annoy me. Then I got to thinking about the difference of death and how when someone has ‘lived’ they are somehow missed more. It’s acceptable to be sad on holidays, anniversaries or just have a bad day. But when they haven’t ‘lived’ you never really had anything to miss.

However Elva did live as did all those babies who were lost in pregnancy. People seem to think its like a miscarriage and you don’t miss them as not lost a child just a pregnancy, because as we all know miscarriage isn’t as bad or upsetting. Which leads me to getting annoyed that a miscarriage or early pregnancy loss is considered somehow less! We can all agree it’s different but the pain is no less and you still grieve and have a hard time accepting that loss.

I’ve lost a few people in my life including a pet and my grief for Elva doesn’t compare. It’s so much more painful, so much more debilitating but it is judged so much more. I’m left feeling guilt that I’m still sad, it’s assumed I don’t appreciate or love my boys the same as I should. It’s assumed I want another baby to replace Elva. Yet if I broke down about my grandad after so many years somehow that would be less judged and more accepted.

It saddens me that Elva will be eventually forgotten. Once me, her dad and her brothers are gone no one will remember her face, her name or her story. Thats ok it feels kind of special. To me she is beautiful, divine and the most precious thing to ever exist and I want the world to know her, remember her and love her like I do.

During this journey I’ve basically lost a lot of people. People who I consider family abandoned me rather than supported me. Friends I thought would be there for me understanding not of my grief but that I was grieving. People who I would consider might think about my feelings a little before they spoke but instead majority have chosen to ignore me, avoid me and pretend like I don’t exist.

Now I chose to stay alone, away from people I thought I knew. That way neither of us need to worry.

Some of you know I have dolls. One is memorial cloth doll I made the other 2 are reborns. I’ve always loved dolls from a young age and tried to get my boys into dolls to no success! At times I wonder how I was  expecting a baby but ended up with 3 dolls instead. It saddens me at times. I feel like a freak even at times. The reason I have them is purely or the craft. Making girly things brightens me up, satisfies my need to dress my baby girl and snuggle her. It’s not unhealthy, I’m not convinced they are real and that’s why I’m sad they shouldn’t be here, she should.

On top of the grief I want to talk a little about the next step. I do want more children but for me that’s not an easy step to make. I don’t want to talk about why on a public blog but it came to me that others don’t consider the pain beyond the loss. You lose daily. Everyday that stretches out without your baby, without another baby. Trying to achieve something that isn’t occurring whilst everyone else does and complains about it.

Stillbirth goes beyond just losing the child and people forget that  as much as life moves on you struggle to do so as nothing makes sense anymore.

tracy

 

The Neverending Story

As we approach 8 months since Elvas birth I reflect on how much has changed but how little has also. The part about grief that people forget is that it’s neverending. It doesn’t disappear overnight and you can’t forget.

However a lot of things do change for one i feel less guilty if I don’t look at her picture. I feel less guilt over it being my fault.

I’m even facing many of my triggers and moving forward. Never moving on just forward till we’re together again.

Also a popular belief of you can’t heal or be happy without a rainbow baby (baby after loss) is false!! The situation doesn’t change just distracts you from it I think.

The thing is it doesn’t matter what you do or how you express it grief will always affect you and will always catch up.

For now we’re trying to enjoy summer. I’m secretly dreading October though and can’t wait till the next spring rolls around. Dark nights, dull days.

Baby loss awareness starts 10th October : day Elva died, it ends on 15th with a wave of light which involves lots of candle pictures and lots of tagged pictures to respond to on Facebook. The day I left my child behind. The day I was separated from my newborn for the first time in my life.

I refuse to be around during October and it’s looming.

My beautiful girl would now be 5 months old. Maybe wanting food, sitting up, giggling, playing. It hurts deeply not knowing what it’s like to have 3 children bounding round my house.

tracy