Loss: Part Four- Wonderful Mama

This a post I wrote for Emma Stewart of Wonderful Mama in November 2015.

Emma was asking for Women to share stories of Baby Loss.

I was able to share my story of the loss of Alex

  • Feelings at the time
  • Reflection
  • Advice to Others

My hope is that no has to experince the devasting loss of a baby/child. I write about my loss as it is my therapy of working through my grief and if my story was read by another ad helped them than I hope it helps.

Loss: Part Four

Much Love

Stacey xxxx

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Review for Kiwi Mummy Blogs: Hairy Maclary and Friends: Cuddle and Play by Lynley Dodd.

Review for Kiwi Mummy Blogs- Hairy Maclary and Friends: Cuddle and Play- A Crinkly Cloth Book. By Lynley Dodd.

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I was sent the soft, cloth book featuring Hairy Maclary by Lynley Dodd to review. It arrived in a beautiful gift box, so I think this would make an ideal gift for a baby. I really pleased to receive a Hairy Maclary book, we have quite a few of these books by Lynley Dodd.  My daughter is aged 3.5 years old and my son 20 months, so I felt they were too old for this book and for me to really do the review justice. I gave it to one of my friends who has a daughter the same age as mine and a baby daughter who was born at the end of July last year and I just knew the book would be perfect for a young baby.

The book is six pages long and features the lovable Hairy Maclary as well as his friends, Slinky Malinky and Zachary Quack. The pages are crinkly, and can be scrunched or shaken. And since the book is soft it would be the perfect toy for baby to cuddle.

Photo Credit: Little Treasure Magazine

Photo Credit: Little Treasure Magazine

 

I asked my friend Claire some questions about what she thought of the book and she also took some photos for me, what a star Her answers are in italics  

What were your first thoughts of the book?

The packaging is appealing in the branded presentation box, I would definitely be pleased if someone bought me that as a gift.

What do you think your girls thought of the book?

As my 3 year old is already a Hairy Maclary fan she was attracted to it straight away and was keen to show it to her baby sister.

Who is it age appropriate for?

It is definitely age appropriate for a baby with the soft material and one page makes a rustle sound when you scrunch it so appealing for their sensory development. I could happily leave my baby with it AND let my 3 year old play with it near her as no hard edges and nothing sharp.

Would you buy it for someone else? Eg- a baby shower gift or new baby gift?

A great gift for someone who may already have all the ‘useful’ baby stuff or someone with a sibling that is already a Hairy Maclary fan. My only hesitation would be the price, I would probably want a bit more to show for my money – but baby safe toys always seem expensive for what they are when your looking at it from an adult perspective.

What are the illustrations and content like?

Illustrations were lovely as usual from Lynley Dodd but it wasn’t a story as such just a few lines from the main books.

Anything else to add?

Over all it isn’t something I would buy myself but often those are the things that make the best gifts.

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I found this Hairy Maclary website which is well worth a visit and there are links so you can find shops, or websites if you wish to purchase this book or any other Hairy Maclary books.

 

The book was published 3rd December 2015,  and retails for $25.00

 

Many thanks to my lovely friend Claire and her lovely daughters for assisting me with this review.

 

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Dear Lily

I realise as I start to write this, the person who it is intended for my actually never see it. But that is not going to stop me from writing. I need to write to this person, they need to know how their story has provided me with comfort at times. What we have both experienced, as well as what others have experienced, well there are no words to explain it. There are many words I could use to describe it, but I am not going to list those words right now.

As soon as I saw the post on social media post yesterday morning, I had to open the link immediately. I read the brief story and then I listened, to a beautifully written song.

Here is the song “Something’s Not Right” Lily Allen contributed to the movie Pan.

 

Lily Allen thank you. Thank you for sharing this song and your thoughts about your Son with the world.

I remember hearing and reading about the loss of your son five years ago, I was heartbroken for you. I couldn’t imagine what you were thinking, feeling and going through at that time. I felt sad for you and just wanted what I reading not too be true. Through your music and seeing you perform live, you came across as such a feisty, carefree and strong woman. Would or could you still be this woman I imagined she you were this heartbreaking loss? I guess the only person who can answer that is Lily herself.

Lily you have kept your loss of your Son private and I thank you for now sharing. On the anniversary of the fifth year since you first met your boy. The words are beautiful and honest. You may of been told you are a strong and brave woman, and you truly are. Although at times you would not of felt like that. I too have had those words to me and I too do not feel strong and brave. I have experienced something very similar to you though, I too lost my firstborn baby, a Son.

I mentioned earlier I remember the time when you had your loss, it was before I knew I was pregnant with my first baby. After my loss, I thought about you and realised we had something in common, we had both joined a club we didn’t want to join. I find myself rereading your story on the Internet, I was desperate to talk to anybody who understood and could give me any form of comfort at that time.

Like yourself, I too am a strong supporter of Sands. I went to my first meeting a month after Alex died and I still go to monthly meetings now, four years on. I am extremely passionate about Sands and I’m constantly searching for ways to awknowledge Alex’s memory.

I will now end this note to you now Lily, we will probably never meet but I wanted you to know how truly special this song is, thank you again for sharing it. I know it is not always for everyone to share and put their thoughts and feeling out there for others to read and hear.

Here on The Daily Mail website Lily Allen shares how losing her Son is something “I’ll never get over”

I will end this post by sharing my favourite Lily Allen song ‘The Fear’

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Remembering and Reflecting

October can be an up and down month for me. It’s getting closer to Christmas, I’m already planning what to buy and how we will celebrate the day and the weather is starting to get warmer. The clocks have gone forward so summer is officially around the corner. I find the the beginning of the month is pretty busy and an incredibly emotional time, remembering Alex. There are a couple of big events during this month. The 9th-15th is Babyloss awareness week. For me this was the first year I helped to organise the events to symbolise this important time.

As I am now the Secretary of our local Sands group. I realise now as I write this that some people may not know what Sands stands for. It used to be an acronym, Stillbirth and neonatal death support (I think!) but nowadays pregnancy, baby and infant loss support is how New Zealand describe Sands. Geez, I hope this is making sense. Here’s the link for . I have a lot of love for Sands, I truely believe if it hadn’t been for Sands, I’m sure my grief would of taken me down a very, dark path…..

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Love this xxx

Back to Babyloss awareness week……. I volunteered to contact the local paper to ask if we could advertise our events in our area. I got in touch with the paper towards the end of September and received a yes quickly and then waited to hear back from them.

I was contacted on the first Monday of the month, (which is actually the day when we have the Sands monthly meeting in the evening), we arranged to do an interview for the newspaper the following day. Whilst I was at the meeting , I received a phone call from the reporter who was going to be during the story and she asked if there would be someone willing to talk about Stillbirth. I discussed with he group about the phone conversation and I said I could share my story about Alex.

For me four years into my journey, I felt I had the strength to share my story. For the first few years I felt I had to hide the fact my first baby had died and I had a stillbirth. It sounds a bit strange to me now, but I felt I had to protect myself and him. Plus, I also found the tears would come nearly every time I spoke of him. But now, I feel very privileged to share my story, I’m a proud Mum of three. Speaking about him, does take me back to the events of four years ago,  but it’s ok. They are extremely important memories and it’s a pleasure in include him. Read my story here

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Stuff.co.nz Friday 9th October 2015

I had such an overwhelming response to my story being in the newspaper and a massive THANK YOU to those of you who took the time to message me, leave a comment, I even heard from people I don’t talk to much these days, it I was really pleased to with the way the article turned out. The reporter was lovely and as I shed a few tears whist talking about certain parts, it was comforting to not feel awkward about crying in front of someone I hadn’t met before. I now know allowing the tears to flow are good, they are a good and healthy release.

Our balloon release last Sunday the 11th went well and it was featured in the local paper. As much as I am proud to share my story, I am mainly pleased about raising awareness for Sands and hopefully helping others. I would anyone to feel alone in their loss and grief. Link to the Taranaki Daily News article discussing the balloon release Balloons released to remember lost babies

October 15th is when we remember our precious babies by lighting a candle at 7pm, and letting it burn for an hour. This is done all around the world and therefore it is referred to as ‘Wave of Light’. There was a service at the chapel at the hospital, and myself and a few other mums arranged songs and readings. I actually did a reading this year, those who know may know I’m not a public speaker but I felt I wanted to read something. When I thought about what to read, the only thing I thought of was a reading I read at Alex’s funeral. I hadn’t looked at it since I read it out over four years ago, but it seemed the right time to share it. So, I got up and read it, had to read through the lump in my throat in a couple of places, but I did it. When I sat down, I cried. Reading it out loud again took my mind back to his funeral. But I’m glad I read it and I had some lovely comments from people afterwards.

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‘Wave of Light’. Candle lit at 7pm, burned for one hour.

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Individual candles lit to remember our babies

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All set up ready for people to light their own individual candles

 

 

I’m pretty pleased that part of the month is over, it’s emotionally exhausting but worthwhile all at the same time.

This month I was also the feature blogger for AskingMums, check out my blog post if you haven’t already. It has been a real honour to share some of thoughts and ramblings with people. Here is my first submission to AskingMums Mummy Guilt

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I also have a few more things planned, so watch this space!

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Love, Empowerment and Strength through Loss – Part 1 (3 part series)

This is my story of birthing Alex, my Stillborn first baby and birthing my two subsequent children.

I also share the what happened on the day we discovered he had died and the events leading up to his birth.

Part Two and Part Three to follow

Source: Love, Empowerment and Strength through Loss – Part 1 (3 part series)