The best present
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The Best Present

During lockdown, I, like many, have spent more time on Social Media. Facebook, for all its down sides, is great for bringing people together. I’ve watched so many nomination posts whizzing round, recognising family, and sharing memories about parenthood, and what parenthood means through pictures of memories. At such a difficult time, when people are isolated, and in so many cases, temporarily forced apart, and unable to see each other, this is so important. People have that chance to reflect, and really appreciate the most important people around them, and publicly share their feelings.

Every day there is a new post, and beautiful pictures, and nominations. It’s so lovely to see people, whose lives have been so busy for so long, re-evaluate and take time to appreciate the most special people in their lives.

Do you remember those P.E. lessons in school? You know the ones where there’s 2 team captains, and they have to select their teams, one person at a time? In your heart, you really, really want to jump up and down, waving your hand in the air “PICK ME! PICK ME!!!” But that would be uncool wouldn’t it? Particularly when you know, in all honesty, you don’t have a lot to give as part of that team, so you follow your head, and just stand and wait to be picked, pretending that it doesn’t bother you at all, because that’s much cooler.

I mean, at the end of the day, the posts are talking about real parenthood aren’t they? With memories of families growing up. There aren’t posts circulating for nominations for bereaved parents to share memories really, because, well it’s not really comfortable is it?

Yesterday, I received this…..

The best present

As I read it, tears streamed down my face. This was the greatest gift anyone could give me, the best birthday present, had it been my birthday, I wanted to dance in circles. That’s exactly how it made me feel. They weren’t sad tears but tears of utter joy.

This text message came through completely unexpectedly from my cousin. She lives the other side of the country, and we have seen each other probably once in ten years, and message each other very occasionally, but yesterday she gave me the best present!!

To so many people, I realise how ridiculous my excitement must seem over something so small, but to a bereaved parent, being included in the wonderful, normal world of parenthood is like Christmas.

Baby loss is so hard for everyone. For parents who have lost a baby, that feeling of so desperately wanting to be a part of this wonderful, magical, normal world, but not wanting to upset anyone, and for parents who haven’t been through baby loss, they want to understandably show off their beautiful families, and really don’t know what to say, or how to cope with the parents who can’t be normal parents.

Our Sam is all about raising awareness and understanding of baby loss, by sharing experiences. As a result, I hope we can lower the barrier and increase the level of support for bereaved parents in order to reduce isolation and associated long term mental health problems.

I want people to feel more comfortable, and less frightened of talking and asking about this heartbreaking subject. So I’m saying it out loud, because if I don’t say it out loud, I can’t expect people to understand.

Thank you Janet for making yesterday so special for me. Today is day 2. and I am so proud to share these pictures….

The best present

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