Losing a child is one of the worst things that can happen, it’s not a pity party like most think, it goes against nature , no parent should ever have to bury their child. It’s not normal and it’s impossible for anyone to understand unless it happens to them .
Now I can only talk from my own experiences of losing our son , some may have had a similar experience some may not, but that’s ok there is no set guide for child loss and no set way to grieve.
A bit of background on me before our loss , I was outgoing , quite bubbly ,quite a positive person and took pride in My appearance.
Oliver was born close to 27 weeks his mother had nearly died due to Pre-eclampsia the night before ,he was with us and fighting for 19 hours , sat there watching them work on him due to a haemorrhage was so painful to be sat there watching your son die is something I can’t even begin to describe. Olivers mother had to be drugged up and brought around as she was quite ill , the look on her face is one I never want to have to witness again, I assumed the typical male role of reassuring her and telling her everything would be OK and been strong .
As we left the room with him in a Moses basket and her in front of me I broke down and sobbed like I’ve never sobbed before to the point i nearly collapsed , I quickly composed myself and we were take to a private room, we did the typical things like calling the family which again is not something I ever want to do again.
The day after we were given a memory box which I cant even begin to describe what it meant to me and Nicole , The memory box was from a charity called 4Louis , in there was a clay kit for making foot prints and hand prints and other various items which brought great comfort , Please check them out http://www.4louis.co.uk/
Over the next few days family and some very close friends came to visit , see Oliver and hold him, I can’t even express in words how much this meant to Myself and Nicole, the one picture that stands out to me still is one of My parents , the heartbreak the picture shows still make me very sad every time is see it.
Fast forward a few weeks when we finally left the hospital , Life just felt pointless and empty we both struggled massively and with Nicole been very ill still I once again took to the typical male role of being strong for her , moving forward a few month and Nicole being physically better health wise I crashed like a ton of bricks.
The only support at this point I was offered was tablets, I had tried to speak with SANDS to be told their was nothing available to men in My area, at that point i took the tablets and stopped looking for help . The tablets helped with the extreme Anxiety attacks I was getting and depression but eventually I took myself of tablets as they had made me feel emotionless and I didn’t like that.
Come December that year something changed I began to Pull myself out , Of course the support we got of family and each other contributed to this, but as most men i am typically stubborn and don’t discuss things very often so as most often is the case I ignored most people who were doing their best to offer support.
The next few months were up and down , I started working again which gave me a new purpose , but still it felt like we were just existing there wasn’t much Joy. In 2014 we found out we were expecting our Rainbow Baby .
Everything that had started to level out hit an all time down again . You see once you lose a child Pregnancy is no longer the joyous occasion it should be,People reading this might think that’s a ungrateful and negative view but it’s the honest truth .
The general understanding by non angel parents is having another child will fix things , that simply is not true and I can’t even describe how much Pain that causes hearing them very words . Now you know all too well that you might not get to bring your baby home so how could you be happy ,not to mention all the emotions it brings back and the terrifying feeling of what if it happens again.
The entire pregnancy of our rainbow was a traumatic experience , with the preeclampsia rearing it head again , thankfully she was closely monitored this time and kept in for the last 6 weeks of the pregnancy which in itself added more emotions on top of the ones we already felt .
On September the 23rd we welcomed our precious rainbow into the world , A healthy baby girl , for the next few weeks after things were better , or so I thought , a busy mind is a distracted mind and as things settled down the feeling of emptiness returned , the low moods came again , but again I did the typical man thing and stayed strong as My partner was struggling with her emotions , sadly as a side effect of the c section and epidural My partner was left with unrepairable nerve damage on her back adding even more stress on top of our daily struggles.
As I sit here today typing this , I realize how much I have changed , for the best part for the Better , being able to give back through Making Graphics for people and Volunteering for Daddys With Angels , I am slightly more irritable than before My loss and have anger problems that I am working on
Daddys With Angels is unique in that it is ran by men for men .roughly a year after joining, I was asked if I would like to volunteer my time and haven’t looked back since .
Come check us out at www.daddyswithangels.org
Angel Dad, Graphic Designer,Trustee