It’s Baby Loss Awareness Week, which puts a lot into perspective for me. I have two healthy children aged one and four. Some days they drive me round the bend with constant demands for chocolate and another game of hide and seek. Then there are those days I just crave a moment’s peace and I can’t seem to get it, not even a trip to the bathroom. This week I am reminded to find a bit of perspective and contemplate how lucky I am.
I recently met a lady called Jenni. We were talking about Facebook and the challenges social media can bring when we experience trauma. Jenni lost two boys, Theo and Jay, in pregnancy and she also experienced an early miscarriage at nine weeks. As Jenni embraced her beautiful babies with no heartbeat, it changed her life forever.
It was inspiring to hear Jenni emphasising the importance for people to meet and name their baby. Cuddling her little boys helped to create memories which were so precious as she didn’t have time to make many with them. It also made her feel her utter distress was validated, they were real little babies. They were real little people.
In 2016 I am mystified that we still avoid taboo topics and sweep things under the table. Jenni had people cross the street and some of her closest friends couldn’t speak to her. One thing she learnt was that although some people can’t be there for us, there are people we barely know who surprise us. Their kindness will stay with us forever.
Thankfully for Jenni she found SiMBA – a charity founded by a team of dedicated individuals in 2005 in response to the needs of those affected by the loss of a baby during pregnancy or close to the time of birth. The charity has helped thousands of people piece their life back together.
People need to know that there is hope. Even when we feel like there is nothing left to live for. Sometimes when it would be easier to sink we can chose to swim. May this week remind us to be there for those that really need it the most – don’t be a person who crosses the street.
Jojo Fraser is a mental health ambassador and author of the popular blog mummyjojo.com