Taken by Carly from To Write Their Names in the Sand at Burns Beach in WAI have four children, three here with me that roar, Alexander, India-Sophia and Clementine-Auriella and one beautiful blonde baby boy Harry who soars (thanks Soph for the saying roars and soars!)- who was born on his due date April 24th 2008 full term and sadly passed away, we held him in our arms, cuddled him and took lots of pictures, there was nothing the best doctor in Melbourne could do, his heart had stopped. He was a beautiful blonde haired baby, perfect looking in every way and looked like his sister and brother.
Nothing in the world prepares you for child loss, it's a soul changing event - but we raised money for a "Harry Board" a computerised huge board which was placed in his brother's class in prep at that time. The kids interact with the board, move things around on the board, change words and pictures, it's basically a massive virtual computer screen - it's quite amazing and my children all refer to it as the "Harry Board" so do the children at Holy Rosary Primary School. A plaque is next to do it with Harry's footprints and the name "The Harry Board".
We have since gone onto to have a beautiful baby girl Clementine, who is our "sunshine after rain" and has brought much joy to our family - but we still miss him dearly, the pain is not raw three years done the track but it sits in a gentle place wrapped around my heart and I wonder what he would look like as a three year old, I think when he would be going to kindergarten.......Not many people know that when a child dies, SIDS and Kids are the ones that provide integral support to parents with children that have passed away from 0-6 years of age - not just to SIDs.. They were the ones that helped all our family get over the shock, they still ring us to this day and check up on us.
What I found cathartic back then was to write, to talk about it, all grief is different and it's so normal to be quiet about it or talk about it, whatever people feel like doing it's so normal, but I felt like doing something for Harry, this quote "the only thing left of mothering I have to do is remembering" - that quote resounded with me - I felt I needed to do something in Harry's honour- it was so important to me for others to recognize that he was our son, we loved him so so much, he was our beautiful child and he was so important to us and what I wanted to do was bring about awareness of much needed funds for SIDS and Kids- I think back then I was very open about it - perhaps I should of been a bit more "still" about it - but I felt I had to use my Marketing, Pr and Event Skills to good use and show people my utmost love for Harry - I went on TV, wrote countless articles in the newspapers, my writing got published within a book, went on radio in Harry's name to spread the awareness that SIDS and Kids need funding and more of it .. to basically spread the awareness that when a child dies that awarenesss is so integral also to bring more funding to research as to why children die unexpectedly and medical diagnosis like ultrasounds are not as futurisitic as people think and can't detect all the problems that may happen say for instance heart problems.
It's so important that community get together to support parents, it's a ripple effect when a child dies, I was so thankful that my friends and all the mums at my son's school cooked for weeks and looked after us...baking does really help in this situation, it's also so important that parents don't feel isolated in this tragic circumstance and also to talk about it..it makes parents feel less isolated and that their grief is normal.
I am so thankful I have my creative outlet in styling to fall back on, I get lost in it, lost meaning its a bit like art, I love the whole process of it and it feeds my soul whether it is designing a dessert buffet table, event or styling a shop or home, or even visual merchandising. I know that sounds a bit over the top, or perhaps sounds like I want to emulate a famous artist!!! (I promise I am not a diva!) but I love the whole process of seeing something come into fruitition and styling has helped me in alot of ways. Our family is also alot closer these days, we realize what really matters and that is love and support and to cherish those beautiful moments in life, I have also met some incredible women through the process, one that designed this blog for instance, Small Bird Studio she lost her baby Jenna - another Sally - who writes "Tuesday Hope" after her beautiful daughter Hope, Sophie and her beautiful daughter Jordan who appears in alot of the Heartfelt photos and another Carly who takes beautiful photography with writing children names in the sand "To Write Their Names in the Sand"and countless other mothers who have experienced this..those friends are people that have been a beautiful sounding board and I thank them for that and I hope that this post comes across as it intends to..not that I am dwelling on Harry's loss,but more to the point just saying I love you Harry and happy birthday and you will be forever part of our familyxxx
----Harry would be three on the 24th of April, Happy Birthday Harry- love you to the moon and back----
Necklace given to me from M the other half of the styling team at LBC from Lisa Leonard Designs