A little late, and we shall see if it ends up getting posted – we are living somewhat in 1999 with Internet at the moment, except dial-up is poor 3G signal, and my massive noisey computer is just my phone. All thanks to a lightning strike taking out everything Sky. #firstworldproblems
To find out what it is all about, this is my first post. This is all to honour a little boy called Seamus and his fifth birthday.
FUNDRAISE : To raise £5000 by Leo’s first birthday
Well! We’ve hit this and that’s just incredible! I wrote about it here, and we are so amazed to have already hit our annual target in just a few months. We haven’t reset the target, but we will just where the year takes us.
Our friend ran for Leo at the Edinburgh 10km and sorted himself this tshirt -which we just love! They sent us his medal, engraved with Leo’s name on which just makes our hearts melt. We need to get a medal holder for all of Leo’s medals now!
The main other bit of fundraising this month was our Bake Sale & Raffle for SANDS and Aching Arms. All together we raised £600 which I never expected to reach. It got really stressful and we got snappy with eachother on the run up to it. All over cakes! It’s hard work planning and organising, fearing that no one is going to come, wanting to maximise everything you can, and knowing that you are putting yourself out there as the one who had a stillbirth. It’s all bloody scary, but it was a success and we are so pleased. And now we are enjoying a quieter week to recoup.
To see all of our events, and keep up to date with progress, feel free to follow along on Facebook.
WELLBEING : To do everything I can to be healthy mentally and physically
On a mental wellbeing level, I completed my #100DaysOfWellbeing and the May projects of #CreativelyMe and #MayWeAllHeal. Hashtag galore. All were really helpful ways of reflecting and evaluating how the day has gone, a good way to explore different aspects of our grief and recovery, and to keep the conversation open between us both. I found it equally helpful, as I did hard work at times. When it came to an end, it was quite freeing but I do miss having a chance to sit at the end of the day to evaluate. However, I did find I blogged less. I think I have a more settled understanding of our grief, with less currently to work through. That’s going to change as we keep travelling through this journey, but right now – I at least understand our darker days or thought processes.
We also went to our first SANDS meeting, which was really helpful. It was so freeing to just be somewhere with others who walk this journey and to talk, laugh and share. I found it also enlightening as everyone had been looked after at the same hospital and that was very comforting. I’m sure we will try and make it a regular visit.
As its SANDS Awareness Month, I’ve shared quite a bit about how they help us on Leo’s Facebook page – in a bid to raise awareness of the various things that they do.
STUDY : To read the Lancet papers and research stillbirth and IVF and respond in some way
That angry email reply I sent to my MP last month made some form of impact. He attended a stillbirth debate in parliament led by Patricia Gibson (part of the SNP Party) and he quoted my email and shared our frustrating that the local commissioning group inadequately advised how the local area are addressing the issue. I watched the debate online, and he sent me a copy of it too – which is now in Leo’s memory box. Made me feel writing to your MP is sometimes very worthwhile.
I’m still waiting on a reposonse from someone else from parliament, but I’ll stay patient.
My notes have arrived and are with the sepcialist in Manchester. I’m still waiting on a review from the hospital and once we have both, that should somewhat ‘complete’ the investigations into Leo’s death and we should then know everything that there is to know.
VOLUNTEER : To enquire about working with a charity or organisation to help others
Our local hospital is now in reciept of Aching Arms bears and I have another batch ready and waiting to go to another local sister hospital. Taking them in was hard, going back to where we were with Leo just floods the emotions big time, but it’s important to not let that stop us helping others.
The collaboration should soon be in the local paper too, so will have to keep an eye out for it! Great to bring awareness to the charity and the cause.
REMEMBER : To participate in some local & National SANDS remembrance events & take part in #CaptureYourGrief in October
We attended the National SANDS Remembrance Service a few weekends ago, which I’m glad we were able to do as its something in the very early days that gave us an focus and intention of making it through to summer. Whilst the service wasn’t what I expected or my cup of tea, it was so so good to meet a few people I know from IG – to put faces and voices to names and stories, is incredible.
We also held a ‘Candle for Leo’ on his fifth month anniversary last week and it was just so nice. We’d had a really hectic week and day, and it gave us an opportunity to stop, talk about Leo and just be. It was so nice for others to take part too, and share their love for Leo.
Yesterday, I decided to finish of some bits of Leo’s room that I had planned before he died. It just felt odd to leave it unfinished. His room is his and is a place of comfort and peace, and it just doesn’t feel right to put it all into a box just yet.
We are trying to write Leo’s name or take him to the places we go, and we are off to the beach this weekend, and looking forward to writing his name on the Devon coastline!
If you would like to honour Seamus’ fifth birthday, please have a look, set yourself a challenge and don’t forget to donate. All the information is here. Please spread the word!