I have been asked what support did I find most useful when I first lost Cacia, what would I suggest. Um… honestly those first few months I felt so alone, so lost, so fogged, so devastated that I honestly don’t think support was even on my radar. At the time, I wanted to never leave my bed, but I did, I went through the motions of being a mummy; meals, washing, playing, toddler groups etc… other than that I did not function, I did not care. I did not read, I did not watch tv, I did not socialise unless I was with my daughter or family, I was not a wife, I was not a friend, all I was was a Mummy. At the time, if someone had offered to take away my mummy responsibilities so I could stay in bed and never leave, I would have said yes, and walked away from life. Now, almost 2 years later, I look back and think that maybe having to continue to function as a mummy was the best support I could have had. In reality I will never know, all you can do is survive the situation in the circumstances you find yourself in, even if your survival is inadvertent, and eventually find a new norm and new self. My circumstances were; I had a dependant toddler at home who needed her mummy, I am her mummy.
Eventually after a while, quite a few months, I started reading blogs, words of other mum’s who had been through similar devastation. For me it made me feel less alone, it helped me identify what I was feeling, I felt so overwhelmed and numb with feelings and emotions. Throughout my journey my support needs have changed, sometimes it is about feeling less alone, other times it’s about being proactive and supporting groups and messages that attempt to raise awareness of and prevent child loss.
I have had some comments asking me what groups I found, and still find, useful, helpful supportive. Below are the three that I have discovered at different points on my journey, but ultimately gave me support, direction, help when I needed it. There are many groups, organisations, blogs, magazines out there that offer the same, these are just some of the ones I stumbled across and ended up connecting with.
Still Standing Magazine (http://stillstandingmag.com/)
SANDS – Stillbirth and Neo-Natal death Society (https://www.uk-sands.org/)
International Stillbirth Alliance (http://stillbirthalliance.org/)
I hope, wherever you are, that you find a way to survive and make your way to a new norm, however that happens and whatever your circumstances.