Why I didn’t blog last week…

Illness basically!  I fell ill the week of Daisy’s birthday, absolutely no surprise at all that I did really. I guess in the midst of everything that went on I then forgot to blog! It’s now firmly written in my diary. Although maybe I am stretching myself too far with a post every week, perhaps it should be once a fortnight?  Anyway, I will just write this week and give an update I think…

So Daisy’s birthday came and went in a bit of a blur and numbness. I went to Bolton hospital on Monday 24th September and spent a lovely morning there with the Chaplain. He was so warm and welcoming, offered me a drink and chatted to me. I spent the morning placing a butterfly on the tree of remembrance in the chapel, writing in the book of remembrance and looking at the beautiful garden where Daisy’s ashes were buried. I didn’t shed a tear, it was quite odd. When I came to leave I decided to walk the same corridor I did when I left with empty arms, 9 years ago, I knew I needed to do it. But again I sort of felt rather detached. When I look back now I realise I had slipped in to a very easy place for me, one where I completely detach myself from all that is happening or what I am doing and almost watch from afar. It’s a safety mechanism and one I did day in, day out when I was suffering with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).
It was Daisy’s birthday on the Wednesday, I bought her flowers, and when Olivia finished school we went and fed the ducks at Lytham Crematorium, took some flowers to the Forget Me Not garden and spent some time there as we often do. Then we came home for a birthday tea party and cake! I was doing absolutely fine and again the day had passed without much sadness, just thoughts and memories. And while we were at the garden Olivia wanted to hold the flowers and I went to take her picture and accidently hit the record video button, it was totally unintentional but I’m so glad I did as she shared her thoughts…

“I love you Daisy. With lots of hugs, loves and bubbles. We love you much. We always come here and it’s a family thing”

Extremely blessed and it absolutely broke my heart of course. It made me swell so much as we don’t often talk about Daisy, I mean she’s part of our life but to hear her come out with such beautiful words all by herself was just so special.

And then the illness came. I am not an expert by any means but I regularly take homeopathy as a preference to conventional medicine when I can. I knew I had shingles as I have unfortunately had it many times before. And then the sadness hit and I felt like my heart was breaking. Homeopathy is all about treating the person as a whole, there are remedies that will help specific ailments and are always a good go to, but if you were to have a consultation with a homeopath they would ask you questions about your whole self. So I felt in to what all this was, rather than focusing just on the presenting symptoms and I just felt like it was an outpouring of lots of matters heart related. That my body, having not really cried, needed an outlet. My immune system being low, near someone with the chicken pox virus and there we go shingles! So with the help of a lovely homeopath friend and a few text messages later I was taking a lovely rose quartz remedy. Rose quartz is so good for repairing the heart and this is a rose quartz essence made in to a homeopathic remedy and it has certainly worked. The shingles calmed down and so did I. I have taken it a few more times over the last week as I intuitively felt I needed another boost. I’ve also taken conventional painkillers…I may choose natural remedies, but I am not against conventional medicine and when the pain from shingles is attacking, I’m going to do something about it! I’m pleased to say that I’m feeling brighter.
I did manage a lovely walk with Olivia in the woods at Lytham Hall last weekend. My happy place, amongst the trees and near the water. Watching wildlife and experiencing the changing of the colours of the leaves. Nature I find amazing as a gentle reminder about the ebb and flow of life, as one season closes so another begins and brings with it such beauty and wonder. Life is so precious and delicate and is there to be experienced. I love that Olivia dawdled around the woods, stopping to talk to every dog, wanting to know their names, what they eat, how old they are, if they’ve poo’d??! But she loves interacting with people and she absolutely loves dogs and animals full stop. The fish are just not cutting it as pets at the moment! There were some yellow leaves on the floor and she asked if she could collect them to make a sunshine picture…I love her creativity! And we collected big lovely shiny conkers and sticky bobs as Olivia calls them, little sticky burs that even stick to your fingers they’re so sticky! She finds this hilarious.
I decided that I would do something special for baby loss awareness week this year #BLAW2018 and as a business I would offer other bereaved families the chance to share their story of life as a parent after baby loss via my website and social media. Baby loss awareness week runs from the 9th to 15th October and concludes on the 15th with a global wave of light at 7pm. Writing is so good for your wellbeing, especially sharing your story. It’s like an outlet. It allows you to connect with your feelings and acknowledge all that you remember, all that is important to you, how far you’ve come, how great things are, how hard it’s been, all that you’ve overcome. I have so far had five beautiful stories come my way, with hopefully another two to follow. I have been moved beyond belief, it has struck me how a lot of these women I know already, and I know they have lost. I have at times sat with some of them and listened to their stories, their feelings and in turn they have listened and sat and comforted me. But what I hadn’t bargained for was the emotion in these stories to literally fall off the page. I have needed to practice what I preach and follow some self care this week, because I have been touched beyond belief by how hard this is. I know I have suffered and I know that I have found it hard, and still do some days, and I know others do too but to read the bittersweet reality of being a parent after loss in black and white has made me realise how much I absolutely need to do what I do. The first story will be shared on Tuesday 9th October and then one a day for the whole of baby loss awareness week.
Yesterday I launched my closed facebook group Pregnancy and Parenthood After Loss. I know that this space is needed, and I hope to grow a lovely community for bereaved families who’ve gone on to have their rainbow babies can feel safe to interact with each other. A place where support is never far away, and where I can offer some wellbeing advice. I am so passionate about making sure no one ever feels alone on this path. For me it was incredibly hard and I found it difficult to know where to turn especially when I was pregnant but also in that first 12 months when Olivia was here. I needed to be amongst others who understood and who wouldn’t judge some of the crazy thoughts I had.

I wish you all well and I hope you will enjoy the stories being shared next week. If you think the Facebook group is for you, we would love to offer you a warm welcome.

Love and gentleness
Helen xxx