Our Alfie moto, Don't. cry because its over, smile because it happened.

Our Alfie moto, Don't cry because its over, smile because it happened.Dr Seuss

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

sands days

Sometimes weeks go by without much thought of sands and other times it feels like it is my life. I had a support meeting on friday night and listened to my wonderful friend tell her lovely son Callan's story, which was emotional....Monday I talked to 20 midwives and students about the role of sands in the journey of baby loss. It felt great to feel as though our story might actually have an impact on the way they think in the future, the way other parents and babies are treated and the way a woman is treated in subsequent pregnancies. That's my big thing - I know we can't bring the babies back, but we can insure the next pregnancy is as easy as possible - no repetition of story, the same faces to deal with, control over decisions and so on. Of course it also felt good to express the pride I felt in my son, that event hough he was dead I still wanted skin to skin, I wanted to see him - I'd spent 9 months imagining what he looked like, how he would feel, smell.....paradoxically I was both excited and frightened of seeing him. I knew my hello would also be a goodbye. Monday night I had a sands committee meeting and discussed many things that we can do to improve the services we offer, this resulted in me getting back on the email to our local MSP. I spent a while thinking recently about what I want for my role in sands and came to the decision whilst chatting with mum that I would like to be an advocate for parents who have experienced stillbirth. If I can influence the way doctors, midwives, health visitors treat us then I know Alfie's legacy will be fulfilled. He is the reason other mums are being treated with kindness and consideration, therefore his far too short existence has had a tangible purpose. I spoke with my health visitor on Tuesday and discussed what sands does, so I am now delivering some training to her 'cluster group' of surgeries, she didn't even know to contact us if she had to help a bereaved parent!!!! My friend Susan and I are now booked on to the sands befrienders training course, we will officially be able to help bereaved parents. Phew, I also started reading 'they were still born' thanks for the tip Jeanette. And finally last night I watched 'one born every minute' which showed a woman having a live birth after a stillbirth, I felt strangely detached......not sure how I felt about it - had anticipated feeling very emotional possibly built myself up for it, but then when you've experienced it for real watching someone else isn't too hard. On weeks like this, I think I appreciate all that Alfie has given me - my wonderful sands friends, my relationship with my mum and dad and most of all my husband and darling kids we brought home - without whom life seems impossible. had Alfie not gone before they wouldn't exist - a thought that is nothing short of terrifying. From the shadows of my darkest moments comes the light of my babies smiles xxxx


  1. I'm so relieved to hear your reaction to watching "One Born Every Minute" this week, because I felt very similarly, and it confused me.
    I thought the couple featured were very brave to allow the cameras into such a private time. I was such a wreck waiting for Ernest to be born that I could not have done that. I thought the programme was sensitively done, but I felt a little odd about the way it was all neatened up at the end,you know, the whole "happy ending" thing? That makes me very uncomfortable, but I'm not sure if that's just me?
    I think everything you do in Alfie's name is marvellous. I wish I could do something more concrete to help, something I've been pondering on lately actually.

  2. Cheers Jeanette, all the stuff in Alfie's name just kinda came about so to speak. It took me a while to get to that place, it's still early days for you. Flossie's pinafore is such a beautiful idea, what about more along those lines?

    OBEM - spoke to a few other sands mums and they too felt awkward about it. I am hoping a lot was editing and the couple never glossed over their two other babies at the end. Surely it was CH4 doing the happy ever after bit???
    I actually felt more for the dad, don't want to be controversial but maybe had she had a vaginal birth I would have felt more, as that's all I know - my frame of reference.