Baby Loss Awareness Week 2021
With Baby Loss Awareness Week (BLAW) just around the corner I thought I would take this opportunity to talk to you about what Baby Loss Awareness week was like for me in 2020.
Baby Loss Awareness October 2020
Baby Loss Awareness Week 2020 was the first BLAW since I had lost Morgan and I knew it was going to be a tough one but I was hiding a secret – I was 12 weeks pregnant with our rainbow. I was anxious, thrilled and exhausted (emotionally and physically) all at the same time. We had a scan at 9 weeks and Baby was growing well.
BLAW is an extremely busy time of year for any pregnancy and baby loss organisation and it was no different for Morgan’s Wings. We contacted a few different businesses in Cardiff with a request that they light up pink and blue for Baby Loss Awareness Week and were thrilled that Cole’s Funeral Directors agreed to light up and that they’d also display a memorial tree in their window that we could hang hearts and stars on in memory of babies gone too soon. Geoff and I were busy making hearts and stars to go on this memorial tree, selling BLAW ribbons and generally promoting BLAW. We decorated our own home in pink and blue and we visited several buildings in Cardiff that had lit up pink and blue (two of which did so in response to us contacting them) and photographed them for our social media pages. I remember feeling so excited as we travelled from one building to another – feeling as though we were part of something and helping making a difference.
On the 13th October Geoff and I headed off for our 12 week scan. Because of COVID Geoff had to wait outside until the actual scan part. My bladder ached from the need to go to the toilet. My heart was beating so fast and I was sweating buckets. Whilst being weighed the nurse commented on my anxiety and I remember telling her about Morgan and what had happened.
“I’m sure everything will be okay today” she replied.
Eventually it was our turn. I rushed outside to get Geoff and we went into the darkened room. The sonographer put the gel on my belly and started looking. She was very quiet and I couldn’t read her facial expression. I kept looking from her to Geoff. She asked us how far we were on our last scan, I knew then. When she looked at me with compassion in her eyes and said those dreaded words, “I’m so sorry, there’s no heartbeat” I thought my heart would break. She said it looked like the baby had stopped growing around 9 weeks, a day or so after my last scan! She then said she’d like to double check with an internal scan. I needed to go to the toilet and had to walk through the waiting room with tears flowing down my face. I returned to the room for the internal scan. Again there was no heartbeat and she requested another sonographer to check and again the same words.
We were led to another room and we were talked through our options. I was heaving and sobbing and I couldn’t believe that once again, our baby had died.
I just wanted to go home and try and process what we had heard. I was told I could go home but I needed to ring to arrange an appointment the next day. Geoff and I again had to walk through the waiting room of women eagerly waiting for their scans. I had tears streaming down my face and bloodshot eyes, I just stared at the floor. I knew that my close colleagues that knew of my pregnancy were looking forward to me arriving back at work with my scan picture but how could I go back? Once we got home and Geoff had contacted my place of work we sat down to discuss our options. It didn’t take long for us to agree that after last time surgical management was best even though we both hated the thought of me being there alone.
The following days
The next day, with a heavy heart we made a heart for Baby Bee and Geoff went to add it to the memorial tree at the funeral home.
I rang the hospital and was booked in. I had to arrive on the ward at 8pm on Thursday 15th October (Wave of Light Day) for surgery the next morning. On the Thursday about 2pm I went to the toilet and wiped and there was blood again. Later on that evening I didn’t feel great, I had a bit of a dodgy belly and had to run to the toilet as I thought I was going to throw up a few times. At 7pm, we lit a couple of candles to remember Jacob, Daniel, Morgan, Bee and all the other babies gone too soon.
An hour later Geoff drove me to the hospital and we said our goodbyes. I was in a small amount of pain and just being in hospital meant I was restless. The staff gave me some codeine and paracetamol and I tried to settle down and get some sleep. Shortly before midnight I felt a pop inside my lower abdomen and a warm feeling spread across the bed. I felt my pyjama bottoms and they were wet. My waters had broken, something that had never happened in any of my previous pregnancies. I called the staff and they told me to use a bedpan every time I went to the toilet from then on. I went to clean myself up and to use the toilet and that’s when I passed my baby. I could see it in the bedpan. A tiny baby, with a head, body, 2 arms and 2 legs. I went and found a nurse and handed my baby over whilst crying and shaking, I couldn’t believe that I’d just given birth to my baby in a bed pan on my own. To read the rest of my story please visit the STORIES section of our website.
Again we have contacted a few different businesses in Cardiff and Newport with a request that they light up pink and blue for Baby Loss Awareness Week. We are once again thrilled that Cole’s Funeral Directors are lighting up pink and blue in all three of their premises and are again displaying a memorial tree in their Birchgrove window. Cardiff council have also agreed for the lighthouse at Roath Park Lake to light up blue and pink for the week. If you know of any businesses who may be willing to light up please send us their details.
We have plans to decorate our home once again and if you’d like to decorate your own home pink and blue check out our blog from last year with some ideas. Please feel free to send us your photos. In addition to what we did last year we have created posters for you to download to display in your own window. We have also created a BLAW box with items to commemorate your baby and to help promote BLAW. These items can also be purchased individually and are available through our facebook page.