12 October 2017

Baby Loss Awareness Week - Nicola and Jon's story

Baby Loss Awareness Week - Nicola and Jon's story

In January 2015 my husband Jon and I lost our baby boy Miles, at 37 weeks, just 6 days before our planned C-section.

 The day before my last scan I was feeling a bit under the weather. I was a bit concerned that I wasn't feeling as much movement as usual, but I thought it would be best to wait until my scan the next day to query it.

When the sonographers in antenatal did the scan there was a deafening silence.  Where there was normally a racing heart beat there was nothing. Our baby was gone. To say we were heartbroken was an understatement, the pain was devastating.

 Jon and I quickly called our loved ones; we needed our parents around us to help us through this unthinkable time. The steps that followed are clear as day in my mind but too hard to put in to words. It was decided that I would be allowed to give birth via C-section. We were walked 'the back way' to labour suite where we were prepared for theatre. I had an infection that meant I was required to have a general anaesthetic, rather than a spinal block so Jon couldn't come with me for that.

 What I remember about my return from theatre was some amazing care from some phenomenal midwives. However, the facilities to help cope with this loss were far from ideal. I had to spend my time grieving on the labour suite at Queen's Medical Centre (QMC) with the sound of far happier families surrounding me. It was a horrible experience and something no family who have lost a baby should experience.

 It was when we returned home and we're planning the funeral that we read about Forever Stars, a charity supporting parents and families who have experience still birth, set up by Michelle and Richard Daniels following the still birth of their daughter. We decided that we would give any donations from Miles's funeral to the charity, supporting the fundraising efforts of the first bereavement room, the Serenity Suite, at the QMC. We thought it was a brilliant idea, as there needed to be a better facility for bereaved parents and families to come to terms with their loss.

 We reached out to Richard and Michelle and the rest is history. Jon and I have been on hand to support with events, admin and anything else we could ever since. Forever Stars are working towards opening a second serenity suite at the City Hospital campus in November, so that parent's on both maternity units, who have suffered still birth can have a safe space away from the general ward.

Throughout October Forever Stars are inviting people to join their #TalkAboutThem campaign, helping remove the taboo of talking about stillbirth and baby loss. They are encouraging groups to have their own Talk About Them Tea Parties, raising money for a local counsellor to support siblings following baby loss in the family.

If you would like to learn more about Forever Stars fundraising or hold your own Talk About Them Tea Party    visit their website    www.foreverstars.org, or find us find them on  Facebook Twitter or  Instagram .

(Pictured is Nicola, Jon and family with Richard and Michelle from Forever Stars)

NHS Nottingham University Hospitals
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