Thursday, 26 April 2012

Precious moments, something that I have often thought I would never be able to celebrate for James.  One of those luxuries that while you would never wish it on anyone else, leaves you with nothing but envy & maybe some resentment for those who have it.

I had a precious moment yesterday, against all odds.  During our morning routine trying to get Jev (2.5 yrs) out the door for daycare, at the put on your jacket stage, he reached up cupped my locket in his hand, looked up at me and said "James".  My heart swelled, as he repeated it again & I reassured him, "yes that's right that's your brother James".  We have been working to prepare Jev for what we hope will be his next little brother, teaching him his name, the idea of a baby brother, being a big brother & i have been somewhat tormented at the need to focus on what will be our youngest & nothing tangible to bring Jev back to James. 

Apparently I underestimated the tenderness, insightfulness & memory of my eldest.  He reminded me that mine is not the only mind & memory that James lives in & for that I am grateful.  It is true what they say about children teaching us about life.

My 3 boys, one living, one angel, one soon to be born (hopefully alive & healthy).  I am a blessed woman.

Monday, 16 April 2012

The Aquarium

Since sharing the link to the article written by Macleans & wondering how one magazine could publish such one sided, unbelievablely self centred content, I came across another article.  This one however, is in stark contrast with the one in Macleans.  It's a story published in the New York Times by a father who's child died.  It's raw, emotional, scary & honest and although I have to caution you that it might stir up emotions or nightmares -as in my case, I certainly feel like it deserves to have attention brought to it.

I have rarely seen a forum for such honesty and candid expression of this topic.  If you choose to, go ahead and read it. 

My sincerest gratitude to this father for his courage to write openly about the worst time in his life and sharing his daughter with the world.

The Aquarium

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Letter to Macleans in response to article

For those of you who read my previous post with the link to the story published in Macleans magazine, here is the respone by Perinatal bereavement services. 

If you haven`t read the original article and are interested I`m attaching the link here again: - the-mourning-after

This is the letter that was sent to Macleans in response:
As an organization that supports bereaved parents, we were dismayed by the sentiments included in Ms. Kingston’s article “The Mourning After”. A number of points regarding the concept of “oversharing” when it comes to pregnancy and infant loss were perplexing to us.
The overall lack of understanding and intrinsic fear pertaining to pregnancy and infant loss is obvious.  We are, however, optimistic that these barriers can be broken, and we appreciate Maclean’s for opening the door for dynamic discussion on this once-taboo topic.

We represent the Board of Perinatal Bereavement Services Ontario (PBSO) which was originally founded and incorporated as a Non-Profit Organization in 1992 by four bereaved parents. PBSO has since supported thousands of families who have suffered losses such as those mentioned in the article. We provide a variety of unique support services tailored specifically to meet the needs of perinatally bereaved families. We also develop and implement educational training seminars for health care professionals, caregivers, clergy and funeral directors on how to best support these families.

What Ms. Kingston labels as “oversharing”, we at PBSO encourage as healthy grieving. We do not identify taking pictures or sharing our stories as public parades of grief, but as a sincere acknowledgement of loss. Only when one’s loss is recognized, can one effectively grieve. Our society is not comfortable with death, particularly when involving miscarriage, stillbirth or infant death. Depth of grief is not related to length of gestation but rather to the attachment families have. What is most disappointing is the strong reaction to discourage bereaved families from grieving in a healthy way.

As advocates for bereaved families in Ontario, we are working towards a healthier, more supportive society by having October 15th recognized as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day in Ontario. No one should grieve the loss of their baby alone or in silence.

The Board of Directors of Perinatal Bereavement Services Ontario

Friday, 6 April 2012

Perinatal & child loss discrimination

Seems more recently that there has been public attention to the issue of perinatal & child loss.  Some media related stories have brought it to the forefront, even if it is only short lived. 

After our loss, I quickly became involved with our local chapter of Perinatal bereavement services & in their monthly update this month a link to an article looking at perinatal & infant loss was provided.  MacLeans printed an article on the topic & it summarizes the common prejudice & discrimination that we in our baby loss community feel everyday.  It categorically highlights the "new normal" we are forced to live with.

I am saddened by this article, commend all the comments but wonder how when we are forced to live in a world with such blatant intolerance people can ask how and why we retreat to find kindness within our own international community.  I once lived in the land of the ignorant but hope I would never have passed such volatile and careless judgement. 

The perinatal bereavement agency that provided this link also wrote a letter to the magazine in response.  For that I am grateful even though I doubt it will ever be published and more then likely eyes rolled when reading it.  Our messages must be heard, stories allowed to be told, children lives acknowledged & community allowed to convene without judgement or imposed limits.

I am attaching the link to the story here.  Read it & decide for yourself if it's worth commenting back. The-mourning-after

If anyone wants to read the response sent by Perniatal bereavement services to Macleans, I am  happy to post it. 

James - we will never "get over" you.  You will live in our hearts, memories & family with dignity.  For you & all the other babies gone too soon - I will stand up & say you matter, always will & I will always tell your story (ies).

xoxo mommy