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Life after Stillbirth

Life after Stillbirth

www.thefertilitypodcast.com

Frankie Brunker

Meet our guest, Frankie Brunker, author of These Precious Little People

Please be warned that this weeks’ episode is a hard-hitting and emotional one. It is a raw and emotional account of stillbirth and the grief that follows. I chatted with Frankie Brunker, after meeting her met at a fabulous Yoga day put on by Lucy from The Rainbow Running club.

Route to Parenthood

Frankie’s route to parenthood started really quickly after conceiving in the first month of trying however, devastatingly their daughter was born stillborn at 38 weeks. This came as a complete shock.

Frankie’s husband had to call their family from the hospital to break the news. Frankie felt so concerned about telling family and how they would feel, particularly her nieces and nephews who were excited about a new baby coming into the family. They decided that they needed to be insular and in their own little bubble to get through this difficult time, one day at a time.

The Funeral 

Frankie made the decision for her nieces and nephews not to attend the funeral of their daughter. At the time, this felt like the right decision but now Frankie has some regrets and is now mindful that not being included may make it more difficult for children, in general, to deal with grief.

Experiencing a Stillbirth

Frankie talks about her experience of giving birth at the hospital and how she felt that some of the midwives had limited experience of caring for a mother delivering a stillborn baby, and that she felt there were gaps in the bereavement care she and her husband received.

Frankie’s honest account of the, sometimes insensitive and ignorant, remarks she has received along the way is powerful and arresting

Precious Little People 

As a result of her experience, Frankie is now the author of a beautiful children’s book to help explain baby loss to children but also Frankie says the book helps adults to come to terms with grief too.  Her aim for the book is that you can talk about loss of your baby but that you can still think of them and smile. Her book aims to appeals to bereaved parents from diverse communities and cultures.

Blogging as a bereaved parent 

Frankie has recently written a blog giving support to bereaved parents who may be finding it especially difficult going through this experience during lockdown, and urges people to reach out for support.

SOCIAL MEDIA:

Frankie Brunker Instagram: @thesepreciouslittlepeople

The Fertility Podcast 

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 Kate Davies

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Read Full Transcript

0:04
Okay, do you think that was people were in lockdown, they’ll be brave enough to do more things like home testing.

0:08
I think being in lockdown is an ideal time to do more home testing because when you’re in lockdown, you’re kind of in limbo, you don’t really have the opportunity to do very much. But actually what you can do with home testing is find out so much about your fertility, and whether you need to start making some changes to lifestyle and that’s why we’re really chuffed to

0:27
have meditech sponsoring the fertility podcast because whether you’re trying to get healthy before getting pregnant, or investigating why you’ve not been getting pregnant meditech has a range of simple high blood tests developed with Kate to help you visit meditech comm to find out more.

0:49
I think that’s what I wanted to get across in the book as well. You can talk about these babies that have died and you can say we missed them. I wish they were here. But you can also Think of them and smile, you can feel like they’re still with you in a lot of ways. And, you know, asthma is in my thoughts a lot. And that’s going to be different for everyone. Because if you’ve, if you’ve had an early loss, you may not have had as much time to imagine your whole life with them, you might not have been able to give them a name, but there’s still a little part of your heart that was dedicated to that baby, even if only for a short time, that love that you have for them, that doesn’t go anywhere, and it can actually grow with you. It’s not the same as seeing your child grow up, but you can still sort of have them in your mind and your heart.

1:40
This error is from the fertility podcast is talking about miscarriage. With staggering numbers of people affected daily by this, there’s still a silence around it, feelings of shame. Along with the grief there is the physical impact of loss. And we wanted to explore this further over the coming weeks with a number of conversations. from experts, as well as people who have been through it.

2:03
Unfortunately, there are so many reasons why miscarriage happens. Whether it be genetic or percenter problems, infection or long term health conditions you may suffer from or sometimes we just don’t know. We hope that by talking about it in this way, you will know that there is support and guidance available for you from groups, experts and organizations.

2:28
To find out more about the support available, visit the fertility podcast comm forward slash miscarriage where there will be listening to the range of organizations available as well as all of these episodes. I’m now

2:47
going to introduce Frankie Frankie Bunka who is someone that I met recently at the most gorgeous event put on by Lucy who is mother of one on Insta and you may have seen her Rainbow running clubs Lucy put on this Yoga Day which was just so indulgent. I’m so glad I went considering where we are now in lockdown and Frankie and I sat next to each other at lunch and got chatting, didn’t we Frankie?

3:12
That’s right. Yeah, I was really pleased to be able to connect with lots of other wonderful women and it was such a privilege to get to meet you as well. Natalie, how did you find the day? How did you find Lucy? Oh, well, I I connected through l feathering the empty nest. So she posted about Lucy starting up these learning curves. And I thought well, they sound absolutely amazing because I love learning. And I just thought the the concept of it sounded really positive way to bring people together and to do something to actually do something meaningful after you’ve been through something so traumatic, and something that can be so restorative and rejuvenating. So it’s not it’s not just the running is the yoga, hence the yoga retreat day, but I think she also runs You’re getting huge names and things as well. And she’s been running a meditation series as well. And that’s been especially helpful during this lockdown period.

4:08
I want to talk a bit about where we are now also about what’s kind of been going on with you. I read one of your most recent blogs, which was really helpful. signposting people. But before we get there, let’s just talk a little bit about your book, and your kind of route to parenthood that led you to write it because when you were telling me about it, I was like, we’ve got to talk more, because I think it’s such a lovely thing that you’ve done. So happy to just tell me a bit about your worship route to parenthood. Really?

4:40
Yeah, so I, I’ve always wanted children, and I met my husband when we were both quite young. And we have a very romantic sort of head over heels in love quite early on. And we would sort of Daydream together about having a family but we were both sensible level headed people. So we thought, well, we’re we won’t rush into things and we’ll bide our time or do things in the right order, as judged by society, you know, concentrate on getting qualified, going to university, starting a career, buying house together, getting married, you know, all these things we felt we had to get into place, but that was

5:23
given.

5:25
Yeah, so go down, tick them off the list. And I think both of us, we were keen to have children of our own, but we weren’t totally naive. We knew that it wasn’t given. So when we wanted to start having a family, we were kind of nervously optimistic. I would say that we it would happen for us and actually, my husband was absolutely gung ho about it and said, yeah, this is what you’re talking about. This is absolutely going to be fine. We’ll make a baby first month of trying. It doesn’t always work. out that way. But he was actually right. He was one of those fluke lucky couples that did concede the first month of trying. And it almost seemed too good to be true. Because I just I just couldn’t get my head around the fact that we were now actually pregnant. It was such a thrilling, exciting time. And every week of pregnancy, it was just just marveling at everything that was happening to me, you know, the bump growing and the symptoms I was experiencing. I just, it sounds maybe I’m sort of looking back with the benefit of hindsight knowing how ended but I do feel like I did really embrace that time, and I enjoyed it. And I’m so glad that I did because sadly, our daughter was stillborn when I was 38 weeks pregnant. And it was a complete shock. We didn’t have any warning signs that anything was wrong. And we just felt like Well, my husband actually asked me Have you felt the baby mood today? And I said, No. And we then did all the things you’re, you’re told to do drink a glass of orange juice lie down inside, really concentrate on feeling the kicks, and there was nothing. So we were in hospital. And they told us to go and do that. And we said, we’ve already done it. So they did tell us to come straight in. And that was when we were told that our baby had died. But even on the way to the hospital, I was thinking, well, worst case scenario, I’ll be having this baby by emergency c section today. We taken the car seat in depth in car, just in case and it was I remember that car journey really well, that we were just silent on the way and I was just desperately hoping to feel the baby move. But even at that point, I don’t recall thinking the baby might have died to me that just I don’t know if it was just too horrible. thought to even imagine, but I just did my thing. So baby could die that late in pregnancy after such a problem free experience. So, yes, it was just a living nightmare that we were thrust into. And it just felt like an alternate reality that we were trapped in. And I was very conscious of the fact that I had all these family and friends waiting around us waiting to hear news of us going into labor, because, you know, I was over 38 weeks pregnant. So in theory, it could have happened anytime. And then my husband was having to make the phone calls to tell them Actually, yes, we are having a baby but the babies died. Yeah, I just can’t imagine how horrible it was for him to make those phone calls. He went out of the room to do that. I’m so grateful he did because I don’t think I could have managed to do it. But then I knew that there was a ripple effect because You know, we we both have sisters that have had children, we knew that those children would have to be told they were young, but they were old enough to know about the pregnancy, they were expecting a baby along with us. And it was really difficult for us to, to think how

9:18
we’re going to navigate it all. What I’m hearing that’s fascinating is how quickly your thoughts go to other people rather than yourself. And we do that I think in times of crisis.

9:33
We’re like, what about everybody else?

9:37
And I’m interested in how it came back on you, or was it an easier way to cope by making sure everybody else was okay, in those initial kind of periods of it of going through it?

9:52
Yeah, I mean, I think I quickly realized that I can actually cope with taking on the burden of what everyone else was. Getting through, we did become very insular. quite quickly after breaking the news, as it were, I do remember that we didn’t even tell our siblings straightaway, we told our parents and we said, Look, we don’t want anyone else to know right now. Because there was a waiting period, there was a time between us being told that our baby had died and actually having our baby in our arms. And I think we needed to sort of get through to that point before we could kind of allow the rest of the world to know in a way, and I think we were conscious that my younger sister might even have been at a wedding of her husband’s family or something. So I sort of was quite aware there was other stuff going on, and I could, I couldn’t sort of ruin their their whole day and their whole weekend. It was a Saturday that we found out, our baby died and we just knew needed to be in a little bubble for a bit and just kind of get through the next bit and figure out how we were going to cope with the next stage. And even when it came to planning as a funeral, we were thinking, right, well, who can we have come to this? How can we manage this? We decided I don’t know if it’s the right or wrong thing. But we decided we didn’t want our nieces and nephews there. Because they were so young, we thought, well, it’s actually too difficult for everyone to, to have to factor them in. It’s not an an ordinary funeral. You’re not going to be able to talk about the memories that you shared with that person. And just the thought of them seeing this tiny coffin Is it something that I have some regrets over but I can’t change it now is what felt right the time to kind of protect them in a way but as soon realized that actually, although that’s that’s often our instinct, it’s not really doing The children around us many favors in the long run. Because I have come across people who did make that decision as well with living children they had so these four siblings, and they said, Oh, no, they shouldn’t come to the funeral, it’s going to be too sad. It’s going to be too strange. Or even at the hospital, you know, earlier on, so they didn’t come and meet the baby at the hospital, for example. And, yeah, those siblings as they’ve grown up, they’ve actually been able to articulate how they’ve actually felt angry about being excluded. And it is different for every family. Some families will know that was the right thing, and they will be able to be confident in that decision they made. And they know that’s, yeah, they have no regrets over it. But you can’t really predict how children are going to come to terms with that information. And their development is such that you can’t predict how they’re going to feel about it later on. Some children are going to feel very upset that they weren’t Included at that time. And others, they might well feel glad that they weren’t subjected to all of that, you know that that trauma as well. I think it’s

13:09
when you were just talking about the, the process of that decision making. And when I was listening to you talking about thinking about it, I was getting emotional thinking about the physicalities of babies funeral. And I think your rational mind as an adult is to protect children. And I think that has to be you have to give yourself that peace that you followed your instincts. I think the conversations are so vital along the way, but I was thinking Gosh, like getting really teary hearing you describe it thinking I’d be exactly the same. You’d want to just protect other children because like you say, how can you put it into words and, and I think the impact of this is so unpredictable because you’ve not really got any reference. Hopefully It’s not something that you’ve been through before, I just want to go back if we made just a little bit the time in hospital, and just how you feel you were looked after or supported through the kind of the different stages of what you had to go through.

14:15
Well, as I said, we found out our baby died on a Saturday. So that might have had some impact on who was around to support us. The bereavement midwife wasn’t available initially. But the midwife that stuck with us, as we were told the news and told us about the next steps, she was absolutely incredible. I have to apologize. I can’t remember her first name, but I do know that I took note of her surname, and it was Angel. And I thought, wow, this is really weird, but it did feel like we were in the presence of someone a little bit otherworldly the way that she, you know, just really was bad. I can’t remember she actually held my hand but it felt like she was doing her hands as she was talking. To us about the next steps, I remember I was desperate to just get it, get the induction process started, I hadn’t actually gone into labor naturally. So the next step was to bring on my labor to have the baby. And my husband was saying, Oh, we’ve got to get, we’ve got to get this baby out. You’ve got to give her a C section. I was saying, No, I don’t want that. I want to be able to give birth to my baby, I want to still be able to deliver my baby naturally. And the midwife was very supportive of that, I think is quite unusual for parents to be given permission as it were to have an operation some do person say and then says that is what I need and what I want, but I think the the general consensus is that for a mother to go through the process of delivering naturally if she can, is better around, okay. And, but yeah, just I remember being quite horrified that I had to wait for the pessary to kick in and forget But to then be able to start and I just, I just thought that was going to be agonizing. But this midwife she was really gentle. And she urged us to go home, to rest in our own beds to sort of start to come to terms with the news. And I’m really grateful that she did that. Because the thought of having been in the hospital that time because it did take 24 hours for the pessary. To kick in for us to be able to have labor induced. I think it would have been

16:31
even worse to then have to go home and be completely shell shocked and empty arms. And that’s the first time that we’d been home, if that makes sense. Yeah, totally. And so we had to go home and then return to the hospital the next day. And the next day was Sunday. So it was all completely different midwives on duty, and the brief midwife still wasn’t available. So we just had to get on with it with whoever was there to help us and it is was quite obvious to me that some of those midwives hadn’t been in that situation before they hadn’t had to deliver a stillborn baby. I think they did the best they could, but I don’t think they really knew the implications of what they were offering. So for example, they said I could have whatever pain relief I wanted. And I was quite scared of giving birth, I was quite scared of the pain. So I sort of readily agreed to that without thinking through what I’ve been told in my birth classes about the effects of certain pain relief strokes. So I agreed to have this die morphing. When my water’s broken, my contractions really ramped up. No one knew how close I was to delivering because labor is so unpredictable. I was less than an hour and a half away from actually having my baby. So having the tablet then it meant that I was very out of it. By the time I actually had my baby in my arms, and I can’t really remember that time. And it’s it’s difficult to say whether that’s because it was so traumatic and upsetting. So my brain has kind of blocked out those memories or if it was the effects of the drug, but I wish I knew. And I’m just glad that my husband was fully aware of what was going on. So when I talked to him and we’re looking at photographs together, I can remember that time a little bit through that, but it would have been nice you know, I wouldn’t I wasn’t offered gas and air for example, to start with. I wasn’t offered this No way. I was offered an epidural. I know it’s very difficult for lots of laboring to get epidurals in normal circumstances, but I, you know, these are things that should, in my opinion, should still be available to women that are going through this sort of experience, whether it’s having to deliver a baby during late miscarriage or stillbirth. It is like a delivery is a labor and I think you should be able to talk through what kind of birth experience you want. And it’s not going to be anything like the birth experience you’d hoped for. But you can still, you can still have options. And I think that’s important for midwives and bereaved families to know. And we’ve been given some leaflets from sans to go home with. I don’t think they had spoken about planning, your birth and the delivery, it was about making memories after the baby’s arrived. But if you’re not thinking about how you’re going to get through that process of giving birth, and what kind of pain relief you might be offered, and what you might want to agree to or not want to agree to, that can have an impact on your ability to make those memories because when I spoke with Jen from Sam’s, she spoke about their national bereavement care pathway. And I wonder whether that part of the conversation is now a part of their pathway from the different conversations that they’re having with various types. So, I mean this this was back in 2013. So I think they have made some strides forward in acknowledging that, that that is an important aspect of bereavement care. And it’s not just about talking to parents about consenting to a post mortem and things like this. I mean, we did get to meet the grievant. midwife on the Monday. So, as I was born in the early hours of Monday morning, the bereavement midwife came to see us that morning, and she sat with us and talked about funeral options and things like this. And that was that was quite an important part of bereavement care, I would say we’d already consented to the post mortem by that point, and that’s what’s covered by doctors usually. But the bereavement midwife again can be a segue to helping inform you and helping guide you through that process. Not all hospitals have great midwives. And as in our experience, not all of them are available all the time. So It’s quite patchy, I think,

21:02
Well, again, I know that in the work that sounds are doing, Jana talked about the bereavement suites. And potentially I think having access to more people like you just said the bereavement midwife. So let’s hope that there is more support in place, but there was an element of it, which I’m thankful to hear it wasn’t I think you’re saying you weren’t totally left. And most there were elements that weren’t obviously how you’d you’d in an ideal hope the situation to to play out as there was certain guidance and hand holding, which is so so important.

21:43
And

21:44
now, you are an author of a book called precious lifted people and that’s how we got chatting. And you also our parents, even to George’s right,

21:57
so I have two living children. Living, I always, I always describe it that way because as I will always be my child as well. So when people say, Oh, you’ve got two children, I say something like, I’ve got two living children or two children at home. And other people might not pick up on that. But for me, it’s quite important to say not to feel like I’m not excluding as me in my mind. You know, she is my first child, she’ll always be a child, my third child, if you like,

22:30
and how do you feel people will find people react to when you say that? Because I’ve I understand that from having more conversations with people who are bereaved parents, and I totally get it and admire it. And I’m interested in how that then affects the conversation and how you feel about that. Because sometimes you might be in the mood to explain and other times you might not. Yeah,

22:53
I think, for me, it’s always something that I like to talk about for me It feels better. It feels the right thing to do. If you like the times that I haven’t mentioned as may have gone away thinking, Oh, I’m so sorry, I, you know, I’m apologizing turn my head. And you might sound ridiculous because I’m sure she would understand if she will, even if she was aware. But I think what makes us afraid to talk more openly is that you never know what reaction you’re going to get. And it does make the conversation slightly awkward at times. Some people visibly recoil when you explain that you had a baby who died. Some people will do the sort of sympathetic head tilt, and they might say things that are nice, but they jog a little so I had one woman playgroups and my son who was born 13 months off as me he was probably only a year old at the time. She said obviously your first and I said oh, well he’s not she’s my first living. being charged. I did have a daughter that she died, she was stillborn. And she said, Oh, gosh, that’s so sad. That must have been really hard. And I thought, well, it is really sad. And it’s so bloody hard. And I think that’s what a lot of people don’t seem to realize there

24:17
is a present is a present feeling. It’s an

24:19
ongoing grief. Yeah, something you carry with you forever. And for some people, it might be a side experience that they can put in their past. I remember we went to a florist around the time of as nice first birthday because I wanted to order some flowers for her grave. And it was actually the woman who organized as nice funeral flowers and she’d been so kind so generous, she’d given us them for free. We haven’t ordered masses, we just ordered quite a simple bouquet but that gesture meant a lot at the time. So I wanted to go back and repay her kindness if you like by ordering flowers for her As birthday and she saw that I was pregnant again. I was very obviously pregnant again. I had quite a big pregnancy bump of my son, the pregnancies being so close together and she said, Oh, I’m so glad that you’re pregnant again said yeah, it’s really nice that we have another child on the way and we’re just really hoping everything’s gonna be okay. And she said, oh yes my daughter she had a terrible miscarriage and it was so sad and but now she’s got these lovely children and She’s so happy now. I hope the same happens for you and your previous experience would all be like a bad dream on day. Oh, just thought you’ve got it so wrong. No, some people might be able to process it that way. But for me and I’ve just been telling you we are holding a celebration of resumes life we want to lay flowers on her grave for her birthday. She’s very much a part of our family stories story still, and to hear her dismiss as me because you know You just forget it. Like it was a bad dream. It was really painful and upsetting. And I could maybe deal with a comment like that a bit better. Now now that I’m years on, I’ve heard it all. I’ve heard a whole range of reactions. And because I’m so used to having this grief with me, it’s not so raw. It’s not so painful. I don’t need that kind of validation from other people like I used to either. And it’s kind of, well, I know how I feel about her. I know how the people I care about most feel about her. And I can deal with other people’s ignorance or insensitivity a little bit better now. I think it’d be really

26:44
beneficial for people to hear that frankness from you. And I think it’s also really important to, to say that everybody will react differently and there’s no right or wrong way, is that and I think there’s also that issue with the whole kind of impact. facility narrative that others can say the wrong thing that we then have to, we have to process we have to absorb and take on and deal with. And I think these types of conversations are hopefully what can help people that are working out how they process and how they go through it. And I really thank you for being so honest about all that you’ve said so far, because it’s, it’s such an important and difficult conversation to have at the same time and your book, which is a children’s book to help those conversations that are even hard and we touched on them before when you’re trying to make the decisions about the children coming to the funeral. And I love that you have approached it with this more poetic way with rhythms and lovely illustrations, and I just want you to kind of try and like sum up what This book is is championed by sans. And I know that there’s other books that people can access. And we’ll mention your blog as well, which I know you’re kind of keeping up to date. Especially, we’re speaking in lockdown and now you’ve been writing support for people for now. Tell me a bit about the aims you have for the book to help children deal with this.

28:19
Do you know my thoughts on book have evolved so much in the time that I’ve been working on it because I initially I was so desperate to give families the tool to use with the children in their family to help them explain what happened. Whether it was a miscarriage, stillbirth and neonatal death, I just thought they deserved to have something that they can have as a resource to to guide them through it all. It’s such a it’s such a nightmare scenario that you just you’re just in shock in those moments when you’re thinking how on earth am I going to deal with all of this? How am I going to Breaking news to the children in the family, whether it is nieces, nephews, or other children you have at home so siblings. And actually over time, I’ve realized that the children will receive the news and they will deal with it. However they are able to can’t really control or help that in a large way. And it’s actually this book, I think is is very helpful for adults, as much as children because I think we bring our own hang ups about death, and about grief. When we broaching the subject with children. Children are very literal. And they are learning things about the world all the time. And in my experience with my son, for example, he has just developed this understanding over time that he has this sister who came before him who died To him the Curiosity around what does that mean? It was just as much as

30:07
the Curiosity you have, oh, what’s, what’s this new vegetable You’re giving me? There wasn’t the emotion attached to it that we have as adults, we have an understanding of what a little person means to us what a baby wearing. means to us. I think even young children that might have been aware of a pregnancy. It’s quite an abstract concept for them still. I mean, I remember when I was pregnant with my third child, my son was nearly two and a half. And I would tell him, oh, you know, baby sister is growing in my tummy. Do you want to feel her kick? And he would just be like, okay, and feel it and then happily toddle off and it was, it was just a weird thing. That was how can I suppose it wasn’t even weird, you know, it’s just something that was part of his reality at that. time I was thinking, well, if this baby dies, then he’s not going to feel the sadness that we feel about it. That was my instinct. And that might have been different if he’d been a bit older. If you had a different personality, every child is going to be different. I remember my nephew who was three winners no died. Three and a half. He was very upset that she died. But he did. He did come to terms with it quite readily in that he understood what had happened. My sister was very frank with him and told him Auntie Frankie’s babies died and we’re all very sad about it. And he would, he had this beautiful way of, I don’t know, like bringing bringing touch of humor or making people feel comforted. During that time of grief. My sister was crying a lot around him and I was quite worried about that. But he would say Things like, oh, Mommy, we can still think about her. And they would see a ladybird when they’re out and about, and they’d say, Hell no, that might be as made as Ching. And he would be laughing and chasing after it, or he’d be drawing pictures of Legos and sending them to me. And for him, it wasn’t this desperately awful thing that had happened. It was it was something sad that it happened. And we all wished it had been different, but it wasn’t, you know, dragging him down into the depths of despair, like it was some of us. And I think we can learn a lot from children in terms of just sort of being mindful of where you’re at and how you can process that information. I think that’s what I wanted to get across in the book as well. You know, that you can talk about these babies that have died and you can say, we miss them and wish they were here. But you can also think of them and smile, you can feel like they’re still with you in a lot of ways and You know, asthma is in my thoughts a lot. And that’s going to be different for everyone. Because if you’ve, if you’ve had an early loss, you may not have had as much time to imagine your whole life with them, you might not have been able to give them a name. But there’s still a little part of your heart that was dedicated to that baby, even if only for a short time. And I think that, that love that you have for them, that doesn’t go anywhere. And it can actually grow with you. It’s not the same as seeing your child grow up, but you can still sort of have them in your mind and your heart. And that’s what I really wanted to get across in this book that when you think about your baby, or your babies who died, it doesn’t have to be this mournful period of grief it, it can bring you some joy as well and give you a lot of hope that there’s going to be you know, lots of happy memories. to still make with them within your family,

34:02
I love that it’s described as a sensitive beauty. I think that’s perfectly explains what you just described. And I think it sounds lovely. And I know that you made a special effort to appeal to a diverse background, a range of people from diverse backgrounds with the artwork, which I think is really important as well, because all too often people can’t identify because they can’t see themselves in maybe the literature that is presented to them. And so I think that’s,

34:28
that’s, you know, that was important to me. I looked at a lot of books that were available, and

34:37
they’re just, they didn’t feel like the right books for us for a lot of reasons. But I did think a lot about people from different backgrounds, who’d experienced different types of losses. And I thought, well, what is there for them, there’s nothing and it made me feel really frustrated and disappointed and I thought, well, if I’m creating something We’d be happy to use, I want it to be something that more than just my family is happy to use. I want it to appeal to lots of people and to help so many more people. And I think that’s, that’s something really positive about as nice legacy. So she’s not only enriched our lives, our family, and made us all feel more grateful for what we have and all those kinds of things, but I just want her to have had an impact on the world and to help other people.

35:33
Now we’re talking whilst we are currently in lockdown. And I know you shared a blog just recently about kind of coping through this phase and I’m just wondering if you could share, like one thought, obviously, I’ll put a link to the blog for people, bereaved parents who might find that being, you know, in isolation is really intensifying their grief.

35:58
Yeah. Do you want to Just

36:01
tell me what you if you were to give a bit of advice to someone right now, if they are finding it pretty tricky to work out how they’re feeling because it changes so much day to day for all of us. But if you’re trying to grieve, what would you say?

36:14
I would say, it’s so tricky. I’ve been thinking a lot about people that are going through this experience right now. And I, I remember very clearly how awful it felt to be going out into the world. You felt scared, you felt anxious, you felt like you didn’t recognize the world you lived in anymore. And it must just be so much more magnified. Going through this experience in pandemic to those people. I would just urge them to, to seek out people who can help them you might feel very alone. Everyone that has been through this experience feels so alone. At first, everyone that I’ve spoken to start that way they feel like this can’t possibly To anyone else. And as soon as you find other people who have an inkling of what you’ve been through, whether it’s through the miscarriage Association, whether it’s through Stan’s whether it’s through the the Tommy’s online support group, that there are people out there who you can reach out to, and he can find some way to relate to and feel like you’re not alone. And it’s a shame that it was sort of forced in this environment to do that online or there are telephone support helplines available and, and open at this time that face to face connection. I don’t think for a lot of people, you can’t beat that. But there are places that are offering online support via zoom so you can actually see someone while you’re talking to them. So I think it’s important to recognize that that support is still available out there because for some people that is going to be able to really help them Also I wrote a lot in those early days, I wrote down in a journal, my Mum, I remember she got me a, just an blank lined notebook for me to write in. And that was so helpful. It just got out some of the pain, so it wasn’t kind of trapped inside. And you can do that at home. Hopefully, you know, if you can’t go out and get a notebook, just find whatever paper you have in your house and just write it down. Or if you’re creative, you could, you could draw, you could paint, you can find a way to get something out onto a page. And I think that can be really helpful in those early days when everything is just so raw and all consuming. And please do talk to whoever is with you. Hopefully you’re not completely on your own. And hopefully you can open up and just talk to the people that are within your household because there’s nothing there. You’re going to be going through a different experience, whether they’re female or male partner that you’re with, they won’t be able to understand what you personally have been through having to deliver a baby. But hopefully they will have been with you during that experience. And they will have had a connection to that baby as well. So you can try and help each other through it.

39:22
Thank you Frankie really write really wise words. It’s been lovely chatting with you. I really appreciate you just being so honest with me and kind of retelling. I know it’s really important to kind of retell the story. But Tim, I really do appreciate it because I think it’s so helpful for people to be able to hear and to hear kind of where you are now and how you feel now. Thank you.

39:47
You’re welcome.

39:52
We know there’s probably going to be a lot of information here that has got you thinking so be sure to visit the fertility podcast.com forward slash miscarriage where we will be lifting links to all the different organizations we’re mentioning, as well as the different episodes within this series. And of course, you can follow us online. I’m at fertility body and I’m at your fertility journey. And just remember, we’re here You’re so not alone. If this episode has been helpful to you in any way, please do rate review, subscribe and share so we can keep the momentum going and how other people find out this podcast and hopefully, help them like it’s helped you. Thank you until the next time

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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