In Australia, one in four women has lost a baby.
Today I was busy whining about how sore my lower back was, how much my legs ache and how little sleep I’m getting – you see, I’m 39 weeks pregnant with a 17-month-old who’s been sick and not sleeping, so life isn’t that easy at the moment.
But then I read something that made me stop in my tracks, cry my eyes out and give myself a swift (metaphorical) kick to the head.
A mother had written to me about the loss of her baby boy at just six months gestation. First, she’d lost his twin earlier in the pregnancy, then due to a few serious developmental problems in utero her baby had to be born early even though they knew he wouldn’t make it.
Every single day, everywhere around the world, expectant mums will feel their baby’s kicks, parents will listen to their newborn’s first cry and families will celebrate the birthday of a healthy baby. But in Australia, one in four women has lost a baby too.
This amazing woman had somehow found the strength to talk about her son’s death now, just a few weeks after it had happened, in order to help others who might be going through the same thing. You see, October is SIDS, Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. This month parents and families across Australia will honour their babies who passed away from miscarriage, stillbirth or postnatal causes.
To lose a baby is an agonising heartbreak that no one should ever have to go through.
I had no idea what to say to her, except “I’m here”. There are no words that will comfort someone who has lost a child, and nothing you can do to help with the pain.