Tag Archives: memories

Baby Loss Awareness 2017 – Let them talk

Baby loss, pregnancy loss, child loss.

Let’s not talk about it.

Society says so.

Society calls for it.

It makes you uncomfortable.

It makes you scared.

It makes you …

Oh wait, hang on a second… it’s not about you.

It’s about your friend who is broken hearted as she puts the clothes away for the baby she longed for who’s heart has just stopped beating.

It’s about your brother that has just watched his wife/girlfriend curled up on the floor in the bathroom or keeled over the toilet feeling the life of their child slip from her and he’s confused and struggling because there is nothing he can do to take this pain away from her.

It’s about the new mum who is leaving hospital whilst her milk is coming in but who has had to leave her baby behind in the morgue.

It’s about your son who’s packing away the unused cot and pram that he saw his unborn child in, his future taken away from him in a split second.

It’s not about you, it’s about them.

Let them talk. Let them cry. Allow them to feel that they are not alone. Tell them that you are there for them. Listen to them. Let them sleep on you. Let them curl up and be where they need to be.

Remember their loss.

Remember their child’s birthday.

Remember their pregnancy due date.

Remember their loss date.

Remember that they will never forgot.

A baby is a baby no matter how far along in pregnancy that they may have survived.

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These babies have a Mum and Dad and they’ll always be a Mum & Dad and they will never ever forget.

I will always be a mum of four, it doesn’t matter that you will only see two of my children holding my hands whilst crossing the street.

You cannot see them, but I have an angel on each shoulder watching over us. One is my Millie, my daughter on one shoulder whom we lost when she was 9 months old and on my other shoulder sits my unborn child who I miscarried at 12 weeks, a child with a name that only I and Dan know.

Be kind.

Be brave.

Let them feel that they are not alone.

Let’s talk about it.

Tell me about your babies that you’ve lost.

Child loss is an unbearable experience, a situation that you don’t ever want to believe that you could be in. I’ve been their twice in completely different situations, one extreme to the other.

They both hurt. It always will.

Baby Loss Awareness Week

9th-15th October 2017

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Making Memories

One of the best things about having little ones is their ability to make you laugh out loud even when they are not actually with you …

      This week I went to pay for something at the shop and instead of pulling money out of my pocket … Stones 😂. I didn’t just laugh, the lady behind the counter did too! For some reason though, she didn’t want to accept the stones as payment, I’m not sure why… 😉.

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It didn’t stop there, yesterday I wanted to write an envelope in the office and put my hand in my hoodie to pull a pen out and out I pulled a big piece of bark … Cue big grin from me … I can’t help it.

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They make me smile even more because they trigger memories , I know the stones were from Bruntwood Park when we were there last week ( apologies Bruntwood!) and the piece of bark was from a farm that we visited late last week in Stockport! 


I love making memories with Leo and I cherish them all and I cherish every memory we have of Millie too, no one can ever take those away from us and most days now, those memories make us smile, not cry like we used to.

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Memories don’t have to cost a fortune to make, not at all. Most of my favourite ones involve visiting parks and running around or lying on the cushions at home on the floor reading books to Leo whilst he lies there listening and stroking the dog. 

Enjoy making your new memories today xxx
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Six years …

Six years ago today Dan and I got engaged, just 5 months after we went on our first date. When you know it’s right, you know it’s right 😍. Just 4 months later (less than 9 months after our first date) we got married in the most gorgeous place in Seattle – we cannot wait to go back there one day.


This is just a little message to say, go with your own feelings. Many people had their own opinions about whether we were rushing things and even whether we would last… 6 years down the line and we are still standing and we’ve proven all those people wrong. 

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Unfortunately many people split up after losing a child, their marriage cannot cope with it and we totally understand how it can get to that stage – I’m not going to lie, we got very close to it a few times after some huge rows but it all came down to the same thing – losing Millie and what it had done to us individually but we have stuck together and little Leo has been our rainbow to solidify everything again.

Do something for me. Always make sure that you are always happy, make your own decisions and don’t let other people’s opinions influence you – if we had, we might never have got married! 

Our 6 year anniversary is in September, so in just a few months and it’s another huge milestone for us … Every birthday, Christmas and anniversary is a massive achievement now for us. 

Look forward, not back and always be happy xxx

Would you torch your most traumatic memories? 

If anyone has picked up Cosmopolitan magazine recently there’s an interesting article in it titled just that. I read it with great interest and it’s probably going to split the reader audience into two groups.

According to Cosmo “scientists predict that within the next five years we could eviscerate our most painful memories” 

I’m pretty much sure that you think I am going to say yes I would. I’m not actually sure myself as I write this.

Yes. Of course I would give anything for what happened to Millie not to have happened to her. 

Yes. I wish I didn’t have to see my daughter in a morgue or a coffin.

Yes. I do wish that I could turn back time and not put her in that place and keep her at home with us.

So. Ideally going off the above statements; yes, I would like to torch my most traumatic memories…but then it gets complicated… Or does it? 

You see. If I torched my most traumatic memories from my life then we wouldn’t have Leo. If I torched them, we wouldn’t see his beautiful smile every day or hear his infectious giggle. But if we torched my memories… Then we would have Millie back and be living a normal life? Wouldn’t we? 

Ah, now, you see; I’m not too sure. 

You see, I’m a big believer in when you are born, whether you like it or not, the day that you will pass from this world to the next is already written in the stars. I think we are given the choices to so many things in life that eventually lead to our death but we ultimately arrive there on the date that was scheduled by us. Not by God, I might add, as I am not a believer. 

Which job should I take? Which man/woman shall I marry? Which house should we buy? What town should we live in? Should I take a promotion or travel the world? Shall I buy a white car or a black one? Shall I get the bus to work or drive? So, so many decisions to make in your life, a life that is made up of so many twists and turns of which ultimately you control your destiny of how you get there but not the time it all ends.

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Torching traumatic memories I don’t personally think would necessarily work. For example torching the traumatic memories of what happened to Millie? It doesn’t actually change the fact of that matter that Millie is still gone does it? It doesn’t change the fact that like today on this gorgeous sunny day I have had to visit our daughter at the cemetery and the only presents I can really buy her now are flowers and balloon? How would that work then? The traumatic memories are erased yet there is then a huge big black gaping hole in your memory that would surely confuse me as to how I would have gone from hugging my daughter the last time I saw her to visiting her at a cemetery? Surely that cannot be good for anyone’s mental health? 

Referring back to the article, discussing the disappearance of the journalist’s Guinea pig in 1985 (as luckily for her this seems to be one of her most traumatic memories) actually made me sit aghast thinking maybe the article firstly, should have featured opinions of people who have been through a lot more traumatic events like the loss of a child, or the devastation of 9/11 or the pain of going through a life crippling illness and secondly that to me are actual real traumatic events because if the science was used to “torch” the memory of a lost Guinea Pig, I would be pretty annoyed at whoever performed it! 

Maybe, just maybe, this is one thing that science should stay out of. You cannot forget here that the things that you experience in life has an effect on you as a person and ultimately makes you the person you are – something of which I don’t think that science should interfere in. 

So in reference to myself and going back to the original question? How do you honestly make that decision? Effectively choosing between my children. Except would I be? As I said earlier, erasing the traumatic memories of what happened to Millie wouldn’t make Millie come back and Leo would still be here albeit his mother (me) would be constantly confused about where my daughter is as I would now have a huge big black memory hole as to where she had gone and how …

I am now actually genuinely confusing myself writing this blog! 🙄🤔😟

I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts on this one! 

Update from Leo: 

Mummy took me for a walk the other day because it was sunny and daddy had gone out for a verrrryyyy long run because he’s in training for that long London run, what was it called again? 

Well, we came home and he was in MY BATH. I couldn’t believe it, he was in there with all my bubbles and there I was just stood at the side of the bath with mummy! Well I’m not sure what was going on but I’m certainly not used to seeing daddy in the bath covered in my bubbles. Actually, why doesn’t he smell funny if he doesn’t have baths like me?

He told mummy that he was broken after his 18 mile run. I don’t know how far that it is, but it must be a long way if it broke him, does that mean that he is broken like when I broke my toy the other week? 

Love Leo xxx
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If you want to read the full Cosmo article, pick  up the April 2016 edition. 

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Smudged Mascara 

I’ve found it quite hard to blog for the past few weeks because I have things in my head that I want to write, I start to write and then I cry and when I cry it doesn’t stop thus leading to a blurry screen, eyes being sore from lenses being rubbed whilst I cry and then mascara all over my eyes after I’ve forgotten I’ve already done my make up for the day – picture it, go on , seriously, it will make you smile me looking like this. Don’t worry, I know you’re not laughing at me crying, I know you’re laughing at my panda eyes and the cartoon image this brings to your head, it’s fine, honestly have a laugh on me. Even though you are all laughing right now, you know you have totally been there with the smudged mascara for whatever reason, smudged mascara is part of being a woman  I think! 

If you can’t laugh at yourself, like I’m doing now with this, what’s the point in it all? 

It’s coming up to that time,Christmas, I can say it now without thinking it’s ages away because it’s not, it’s less than 2 weeks away. This year has gone so fast.  This time last year, I was very heavily pregnant, although I was pregnant and should have been enjoying it, I wasn’t to be honest. I was so scared that something was going to happen to Leo, I was petrified  that we were going to lose him and I didn’t feel as though I could fall in love with him because I didn’t feel like I could cope having my heart broken again like when we lost Millie. That soon changed though, when he was born within seconds I knew I was totally in love with him.  (Me, heavily preggers last year Christmas time) 

  
I’ve struggled this year, a lot. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t change a thing but I have found everything twice as hard because my head is constantly in worry mode. With Millie nothing ever really worried me, I was such a laid back mum and that’s exactly how I wanted to be. 

With Leo, I’m trying to be similar, I know I won’t ever be as laid back and easy as it was with Millie because of the tragedy that we have suffered but we don’t want Leo to suffer because of what happened to Millie; no matter how hard it will be on Dan and I. 

You will be pleased to hear that we have become a little bit braver with Leo and we will now allow two very close friends of ours look after him for a couple of hours, we weren’t sure when we would get to this point but we knew it would happen. These friends have both been on our first aid courses and have children of their own and we are never more than a couple of miles away when he is being looked after. 

For Leo though, this means he gets to spend time with other people on his own. To be honest, I am shocked that he is such a confident little boy when it comes to him being around other people and them handling him because of how much more on edge Dan and I have been, but he is very much like his big sister, he will go to anyone and let anyone hold him. For example, last night we attended an awards ceremony (you see because we won’t leave Leo unless he is very close by, Leo attends all events like these with us) and he made friends with the lovely man and lady sat next to us who also happened to have this amazing guide dog with them. Leo didn’t think twice about throwing some smiles out,having a chat, stroking the dog and giving high fives to them! He loves the attention I think 😀 – which in particular attracts women. This so makes me laugh! I can turn around for 2 minutes and just like last night I will turn around and Dan and Leo will be stood there surrounded by women, I find it hilarious! Haha

  
(inspiration Award won last night)

I know some people would’ve judged us last night for having our little man out so late with us but am I bothered? Not in the slightest. Lots of people don’t know why our son would be out that late with us and don’t know the heartache behind it – so why need I worry? If Leo being with us out till midnight keeps me sane, that’s what we will do. He sleeps until he needs it whether that’s going to bed at 7pm and sleeping till 7am or midnight until noon. Last night, he got to meet all these brand new people and see all the London lights, had his photo taken at Baker Street and travelled on the tube at midnight and he loved it and as soon as we got back to the hotel, he was in his pyjamas and fast asleep within minutes and didn’t wake up until 9am. He is now currently asleep on us on the train home. 

    
I’m not a mum who sticks to rules and lists and follows books, I like to erm .. wing it for want of a better phrase. Some mums like to follow guides and advice which is absolutely fine and works for a lot of mums but I’m the complete polar opposite and I like to fly by the seat of my pants and take everything as it happens. Trust me, if I tried to plan anything I can guarantee something would go wrong anyway, so I’m better not planning anything – that’s what I tell Dan anyway 😀 seriously though, I’m just not a planner or scheduler, never have been and I know that there are plenty of people that I drive crazy in my life because of that! Just don’t ever ask me to be on time anywhere, I am a total self confessed “latee” – and yes I know that is not a real word but it sounds appropriate! Bizarrely I have been very amused by a definition that I have seen online today (see below) … This made me laugh so much as it is totally me …  A time optimist also known as the below … This is so my word of the day 😀

 

(Photos from http://quotelounge.tumblr.com/post/134963265638/1082858991224372451-swedish-time-optimist)

I don’t care if people judged me for having Leo out late, he’s our child and we make up the rules for him. No one should judge anyone’s parenting because every single child is different and that is actually what is so fun about children, that’s why they are totally unique.

We also paid Winter Wonderland in Manchester a visit on their press night on the Friday just passed and I really didn’t know what to expect but it was amazing and if you are thinking about going – then it’s definitely worth the ticket price – all rides included in the ticket. Leo was amazed by all the lights and noises from the rides and the little 4 year girl we went with too absolutely loved the rides and would have gone on everything 5 times over if she would have been allowed. We also have our charity stall there on various dates up until Christmas Eve, so please do come and say hi if you see us.

   

We haven’t quite managed to get our Chritsmas tree up here at home yet – but we will do this week. I’ve never really been a fan of having them up from early December anyway, they start to get in my way and I am pretty sure Rolo would have had it over by now. We will be putting it up this week though and getting some lovely lights up for Leo to watch. We are trying to do everything that we would have done for Millie’s first Christmas so that we don’t look back and think “we wish we would’ve done that” – it’s Leo’s first Christmas and we will make it as special as possible for him – so lots to do this week , watch this space.

Leo seems to be changing at such a fast pace, he’s nearly 10 months now … Where did the time go? 

xxx

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Enchanting Stars 

It’s a dark night and there are stars in the sky, sometimes there is just one lonely star shining down and sometimes there are a thousand to look at glistening down on you. 

Tonight is a night when you need to feel your loved ones close to you because you are missing them so much. Tonight this star is your loved one for you and at the same time, thousands of miles away in another country or a few miles away from where you are, someone else is looking up at the exact same star getting comfort thinking about their loved one – is that not just an amazing thing? 

Whether it be a child, a father, a mother, best friend or anyone else close to you; it gives you comfort to know they are watching over you and looking out for you in life.

Our enchanting stars. 

Then you look around you. You have your children playing around the house or that proud moment your son or daughter is getting married or when your partner makes you breakfast in bed. You see these enchanting stars don’t only need to be the people that we have lost, they are also the people that make you get up every day and see in a new day with a smile.

These are my Enchanting Stars, you can show me yours by leaving a photo in the comments book on Facebook. 

  

This is why Dan and I decided to use the name ENCHANTING STARS  to enter into the Thomson #nameourplane competition. 

We could have chosen to submit a name in honour of our precious daughter’s memory so she could fly high in the sky as she never got the chance to go on an aeroplane just like many other children who are taken too soon OR we could have chosen a name after Leo who currently loves flying and watching the clouds pass by out of the window. (I secretly always look at the clouds in hope of seeing Millie sat on one smiling)

But we wanted to include all our followers, we wanted you to have a name to relate to, to mean something to you and you never know if we are lucky enough to have our name picked, you might even see that plane one day and it will make you think of your lost loved one OR you’ll be looking at all the Thomson Planes at the airport looking at the names and this will remind you of voting for us and who you did it in memory of OR you’ll able to tell your 5 year old son that you are plane watching with or your partner that you are waiting to board a plane with that you voted for a plane to be called ENCHANTING STARS because it made you think of them. Pretty sure that will make them smile and they’ll know how much you love them right in that moment. 

So here it is, our name for the plane 

ENCHANTING STARS

You need to click on the name above or the link below to vote for us to get in to the top 5. If we manage to get in to the top 5 Thomson will then choose one of the 5 names to name the plane after.

VOTING CLOSED 

  

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Pink Unicorns and Green Dragons

So yesterday evening Leo decided that once he had had his bedtime bottle, that he didn’t want to sleep, he wanted to stay up and have a chat … So we did. 

Leo was gurgling away so I began to ask him questions , if he gurgled and smiled that was a yes … If he didn’t make any noise and looked at me funny that was a big fat No Mummy!  You see, so in the story below Leo could have been wearing a sleep suit and playing with purple kangaroos and orange panthers – you get my drift? 

So Leo’s story went like this, 

Leo was on a big hill wearing a pair of jeans and a cardigan. Whilst he was walking across the hill he  saw some pink unicorns galloping towards him and some green dragons flying through the sky. One of the green Dragons came and landed next to him and he began to pat his head – as he did so, 2 white sheep came sauntering over to find out what was going on and why there was a green dragon on their hill.

The two white sheep clearly wanted some attention and began to lick Leo on the head, Leo didn’t like this so he asked them to go away and spent the rest of the day sunbathing with the big green dragon until he had to fly home to his mummy and daddy.

  
Pink Unicorn Credit 

Green Dragaon Credit 

So tonight, I’ve taught Leo’s daddy how to make stories up with Leo , their story went like this 

Leo saw three yellow cats up a tree in Luxembourg and they were picking pears and then they fell asleep and started to dream about milk.

 Luxembourg credit

Yellow Cat Credit

Pear Credit

I swear, it’s hilarious and I promise you’ll never get the same story twice as “baby/child” determines all the decisions without even knowing it.

This is what I’ve missed, this was one of the biggest things that went with Millie when we lost her, having fun and being daft with this amazing little person that we created together. Smiling at the daftest of things and sitting there making ridiculous but important stories up for your baby. Now it’s back. 

I’ve always been a great fan of reading, I will literally read anything. I’ll always remember my Grandad Arthur laughing at me when I used to go in his house when I was really little and grab the newspaper and lie in front of the fire reading it – this is probably one of my earliest memories as a child. I loved to write as a child too. From a very early age I used to love creative writing (I don’t even know if they still call it this in schools) and writing for other people – it’s funny how you pick things up again years later isn’t it. 

Because of all this, I wanted Millie and I want Leo to enjoy reading as much as I did. I still read to Millie sometimes when I go to visit her ,for a long time I read a story a day to her when we were in our worst place, the stories were from a book that we used to read to her before bed every night but now it’s just when I feel the need or just because I want to. 

Leo’s book collection is already looking pretty good, it’s got a mixture of Millie’s books and new books in there that we keep picking up for Leo – even Dan can’t resist picking them up, I’m pretty sure that he added two to the basket the other day in Chester. 

Leo is becoming more and more of a character every day. Today hasn’t been fun for him as he has had his 16 week injections 😖. To be fair he isn’t too bad, screams his head off whilst the injection is going in and then for about 10 seconds after and then he was fine! Poor little man, that last injection seemed to be a long one … But no more until he is 1 year old , I think. Flashback again today because of this as I clearly remember taking Millie for her injections but she never made it to the next batch of injections. The nurse is still the same lady and she even uses the same rainmaker to distract the babies after they have had their injections – I actually bought Millie a rainmaker after her injections as I realised how much she liked it! 

So anyway, seriously, do try the story making with you baby/child – I promise I’m not mad, it’s actually really fun. 

To end tonight’s blog, I thought I’d add a little photo of how I found Leo at 4am this morning in his cot – and no I didn’t put him in this way 😀. (keep reading after the photo please) 

  
HELP US BECOME CHARITY OF THE YEAR FOR SAINSBURY’S IN CHEADLE

You can now vote for us in the Sainsbury’s local charity of the year ( the link is now working ) 

You can use the link below to vote for us if you are in or around the Stockport area. 

Insert your postcode and CHEADLE will come up, select CHEADLE and you will see Millie’s Trust in the option list. 

You can also vote by bobbing into the store. 

Please click the link below, insert your postcode and pick the CHEADLE store and we will come up as one of the options, please vote for us 

https://www.sainsburyslocalcharity.co.uk

ONLY ONE VOTE PER PERSON