#SandsAwarenessMonth: What have we done

As #SandsAwarenessMonth draws to a close it’s a good time to share all that has gone on during this month of fundraising, awareness raising, blogging and political activity (the good kind). I’m turning orange because… The #SandsAwarenessMonth campaign encouraged people to turn their online profiles orange to mark the month.  Throughout this month I have shared, liked…

Werewolves, whirlpools and the first rule of Grief Club

I agree with a lot of what Ana wrote in her insightful guest post The Right Way to Grieve.  She writes eloquently about an issue that the bereaved know only too well. The first rule The principle of ‘there is no right way to grieve’ is the first rule of grief club.  It is a…

Guest Post: Ana – The Right Way to Grieve

The right way to grieve They say there is no right way to grieve, but I see this as a partial truth. It can mean: You’re OK. Don’t add to your torment by telling yourself that what you feel is wrong. There is no shame in feeling, just as there is no shame in not…

The Wood within the Sands

I am grateful for Ana in a lot of ways.  Her response to my blog on my difficulties understanding spiritual benefits of stillbirth was so brilliant and insightful I asked her to contribute a guest blog. This brought me back to where I had started nearly 5 years ago. When referrals to her post started…

Guest Post: Ana – The bewildering benefits of loss

Ana is a psychologist and academic nomad. She is the mother of Luca, born in March 2011, and Nadia, who passed away at birth in October 2015. Upon finding out that Nadia will die, Ana received remarkable care and support from a palliative care team in Oxford, UK. Her experience will be published on Aeon soon….

Something better

I read something today that disturbed and challenged me in an unexpected way. I knew when I clicked on the link that this would be step into unknown territory but I still wanted to see it. To see what possible justification there could be for such a provocative headline. In my writing I have found…

Trigger warnings

This post is inspired by Trigger Warning the latest short story collection from Neil Gaiman. I haven’t read it all yet, I’ve only got as far as the introduction and the first three stories and that’s all it took to remind me how much I enjoy his writing and the influence he has had on…

Boys don’t cry – Fatherhood and grief

I’m the Dad.  It’s my job to be strong for the family I’m meant to protect my children It’s one of the things I fell prey to despite having done all the reading, all the learning about grief and bereavement.  It shows how deeply ingrained the messages are around fathers, masculinity, and stiff upper lips….

Imagine if it were twins…

It starts as it always does with first parenting horror stories shared with a mixture of confession and competition. How hard it is to make the adjustment from being able to just go to the shops without having to plan with military discipline and precision. The special somnambulant state of the sleep deprived. So far…

Ashes and ghosts

I wonder what our children will make of their brothers.  They are too young to really understand but that will change when they are old enough to ask about the wooden box and the baby photos. There was a heartbreaking moment yesterday when my daughter was playing in the cupboard where we keep the ultrasound…