‘…there I was, sat holding my partner’s hand and watching as my baby’s heartbeat stopped, never to start again’
I’m not ashamed to say that I’m crying as I write this. That is the reality of losing a child. It is 1am on a Friday morning and you can’t always predict when it will hit you hard. My partner and I lost our baby daughter Mia on the 18th of July 2009, at 22 weeks. It was nerve racking to find out we were having a baby, but we were very happy and determined to raise a great child.
At our 20 week scan we were told that Mia wasn’t growing right and that she had a hole in her heart. Through subsequent trips to Southampton and then Poole we were left with the terrible decision to either terminate or let Mia struggle on to live no longer than 28 weeks. I won’t go in to details about procedures, but on the 16th of July 2009 there I was, sat holding my partner’s hand and watching as my baby’s heartbeat stopped, never to start again. I can honestly say this was, and is, the single worst moment of my life. Nothing prepares you for that. No parental book tells you the other side to pregnancy. I was devastated, but kept all my emotions intact for my partner’s sake – she needed me more than ever and that was all I could care about. The next three days were tough leading up to the birth; it is here that we first encountered the SPRING charity. The facilities donated by them at Poole Hospital are a godsend, I couldn’t imagine going through what we went through on a full maternity ward, with new babies and new mothers everywhere. The whole day of July 18th 2009 was tough, but I will never forget the short time I spent with Mia after she was born and all the support we received from midwives and SPRING counsellors. We now have a 12 week old baby girl, Lila Mia, born on Valentine’s Day 2011. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about Mia and I see her little face in Lila every time I look at her. I still tend to keep my emotions to myself, as a lot of men do. I’d like to say it gets easier or better, and it does in some ways, but there will be times when it grabs hold of you and won’t let go. It is then that SPRING can be there in any way you need; there is always someone willing to listen.
Thank you SPRING