Category Archives: Stillbirth

We have a Son

We have a Son, Just like you.

He’s got 10 little fingers, 10 little toes, dark hair and he looks perfect in every way,

Just like your Son, the only difference  is, our Son didn’t take a breath.

 

He was born in a hospital and delivered naturally,

I cut his cord and dressed him, just the same as you did with your Son.

However, our Son didn’t make a sound when is was born.

 

We have a Son, just like you.

We love our Son, just as much as you love yours,

We talk about our Son, just as much as you talk about yours,

The only difference is that your son lives here on earth and

Our Son lives up in the Stars.

 

Just like you we buy presents for him every Birthday and Christmas,

However our Son’s presents are for his grave and will never get to play with them

 

I am a Daddy and my Wife is a Mummy,

We have a Son, Just like you!!!

 

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Sorrow & Joy

2 years ago today, 28th May 2015, we found out that Rory had died.  Our world has been flipped upside down and hearts have been shattered since that day.

 

During the weekend before we lost Rory, we visited Lullingstone Country Park and walked along the river. This was the last place that us three all visited together and therefore the place is very special to us

 

On Rory’s first anniversary we visited the park and laid yellow roses into the river and watched them float down stream. The reason why we chose yellow roses is because we all dropped a yellow rose into his grave at his funeral.

 

This year we thought we would get a toy boat and write a message to Rory and let it float downstream as far it can go.  

We put some artificial blue flowers on the boat and tied our message to Rory and dropped the boat in.  Daddy thought I would be a good opportunity to play with his radio controlled boat.

 

Rory’s boat was gently trotting along the river nicely until it started to approach the first hazard. Daddy thought it would be a good idea to put his boat near the hazard so Rory’s boat wouldn’t get stuck.

Rory’s little boat soon passed the hazard a continued to float down stream. However, Daddy’s boat got caught up in the weeds and was stuck in the middle of the river.

 

So guess who had to take his shoes and socks off and wade into the river to rescue the boat, you’ve guessed it, silly Daddy. Meanwhile Rory’s boat continue to miss all the hazards and float down stream.

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Silly Daddy!!!!

Daddy decided to not risk getting wet again and not put his boat back in.  We walked along the bank and watched Rory’s boat continue its journey.  It was very peaceful and relaxing watching the boat gently float along.

 

Eventually Rory’s little boat came right up to the side where we were standing and didn’t move.  So we thought Rory wants us to take his boat back home and not leave it there.

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Rory boat’s resting place

So Daddy tried to lean over to pick, without falling in, the boat slowly started to move out of Daddy’s reach. Then when Daddy grabbed a tree to stop himself from falling in the boat moved closer to the edge.  I think Rory was playing a trick on Daddy and trying to get him wet.

 

Eventually I was able to reach Rory’s boat and pulled it out. We went and sat on the same bench, two years previously, when Rory was with us and watched the world go by.  Whilst sitting there we saw a Robin on the opposite bank looking at us, soon we saw a second Robin and later a third.

Despite all the noisy dogs and children we found it quite relaxing and peaceful and thought it was a nice way to mark the day and found it slightly easier than last year.

 

I’m already thinking about next year and thinking we may either try and organise a charity duck race or get a memorial bench somewhere along the footpath along the river.

 

Later in the evening we found out that my niece had a little girl this afternoon. It is really weird that on the same date that we found out Rory died, 2 years later our family is celebrating a life.  However, we are relieved that my great niece wasn’t born on Rory’s Birthday.

Almost another Year!!!

Rory’s 2nd Birthday is fast approaching and I can honestly say i don’t know where the last year has gone.  The first year was a complete blur, as we were completely engulfed by our grief and felt time had stood still.  This past year has seen to flown by but still feels that everyone around us has moved on and carry on with there lives as normal, whilst our lives seem to be on hold.

 

Two years ago today, 26th May 2015, wife had her 36 week midwife appointment, which ended up being the last time she heard our son’s heartbeat.  I didn’t attend this appointment due to work and now wished I was there. I can’t actually remember the last time i heard Rory’s heartbeat, which i feel bad about, it was probably only a week or two before this appointment, but for some reason the date doesn’t stick in my mind as much as the 26th May.

 

Another date that I will always remember is 28th May 2015, this has to be the most horrendous and traumatic day in my life.  It was the day we heard the words, ‘Sorry, there is no heartbeat’, the words any expecting parents would ever want to hear.  That day and those words will haunt me for the rest of my life.

 

Rory was then born 2 days later on 30th May 2015.  Last year we couldn’t bring ourselves to call this day his birthday, we called it his anniversary.  However, this year we have realised that the 28th will be the anniversary of his death and the 30th will be his birthday.  My wife gave birth to Rory on this day and therefore is his birthday.  However, it will not be a happy one, how can it be, Rory is not here with us to celebrate it.  

 

As we cannot buy presents for Rory, we can only buy him things for his garden (grave), we have decided to decorate his garden with a Roary Racing Car and Disney Car theme.  We have bought cars, flags and balloons for his garden.  It was difficult buying these items, as we were thinking we should be buying presents for a two year old and wonder if Rory was here, would he actually be into toy cars.  I’m pretty sure he would have been, if not his daddy would have certainly played with them.

Just Another Day

Tomorrow will be our 2nd Christmas Day without our Son Rory.  While most people are celebrating the festive period and excited about what Santa will bring them.  To my wife and I tomorrow will be just another day, just another day we have to live through without our Rory.

 

Last Christmas was extremely difficult being the 1st Christmas after losing Rory.  What made it particularly difficult was that we announced to our family on Christmas Day 2014 that we were 14 weeks pregnant and gave them a copy of our 12 week scan picture.  Everyone was so happy and excited for us, everyone all talked about how this time next year it would be the little one’s 1st Christmas.

 

The build up to Christmas last year was extremely awful, Myself and Jo didn’t want to celebrate Christmas at all.  We absolutely hated hearing any christmas songs on the radio or in any shops, especially ‘Last Christmas, by Wham.  We didn’t exchange gifts, we hid away at home on our own and  decided not to have a ‘traditional dinner’.  I particularly didn’t want to sit around a dinner table, pulling crackers, making small talk with in-laws and playing happy families, when our hearts have been shattered into millions of pieces.

 

We have tried to embrace Christmas a little bit this year, but it still very difficult, we still hate Christmas songs.  We have visited actually few christmas fayres, we decided that we were exchanging gifts and after a lot of persuasion we will be having a traditional lunch with Jo’s family, but we are not planning to stay long as we have decided to go away for a few days on Boxing Day.  

 

I still find it difficult to say ‘Merry Christmas’ or ‘Happy Christmas’ to anyone, because I find it difficult to be ‘Happy’ or ‘Merry’.  We haven’t put up a traditional chrsitmas tree, instead we have only put up Rory’s tree (pictured above) with decorations that we have bought for him. 

 

For any angel parent who are experiencing their 1st Christmas after their loss, I would say to you, be kind to yourself and don’t put too much pressure on yourself to enjoy or to pretend to enjoy the day.  Spend the day how you wish and what feels right for you.  

 

To all angel parents I hope the day passes as peacefully as possible.

A message from Rory?

To some people, Butterflies have a spiritual meaning and they may believe that they are a sign from loved ones who have passed.

 

On the Day of Rory’s funeral, just after he had been laid to rest, we all saw a tiny blue butterfly fluttering around the cemetery.  Could this been a message from Rory?

Then after we returned home from Rory’s funeral my wife and I both saw a tiny blue butterfly fluttering around outside the front of our flat and outside the window of what would have been Rory’s room.  Could that be a coincidence?

 

Since that day we have had a few quick sightings of blue butterflies, but nothing significant.

 

Last weekend myself and my wife gave Rory’s garden a makeover.  We took everything off and cleaned everything up.  I then added 3 bags of topsoil and planted some plants that we bought from the garden center in that afternoon.  It took a lot longer than we thought and we were still at the cemetery at closing time on the Saturday evening, so we had to leave rest until the Sunday.

 

On the Sunday we were putting the finishing touches to his garden and then a blue butterfly landed on the garden and seem to sit there for a few minutes.  It then fluttered around and kept landing on many different areas of Rory’s garden. Was this Rory saying that he likes he garden?   

Are these messages from Rory, maybe or maybe not, or maybe that are they just coincidences?  Either way, every time we see a blue butterfly we will always think of our angel Rory.

Please can we Rewind

On 26th May 2015 was our 36 week appointment with the midwife. My wife had all the regular checks and everything was ok, her blood pressure was fine and she listened to Rory’s heartbeat.

 

This time last year we thought we only had four weeks until we met our bundle of joy. Life was good, we were so happy.

 

Little did we know that was the last time my wife heard our Son’s heartbeat and that two days later we would discover our worst knightmare, that our Son had died.

 

I can’t believe it’s nearly a year ago since we last held him and said goodbye to him.  The past year has felt like a complete blur and feels like our lives have been on hold.

 

Since losing Rory it feels like that we will never be as happy as those days before we lost him.  I just wish we could go back in time to those days when everything was ok, life was good and Rory was here with us.

 

Rest in Peace our Angel Rory, Mummy and Daddy miss you so much and will always Love you!! XX

 

Rory parkrun Challenge

10 weeks of parkrun in memory of Rory

There is a challenge known as #7weeksofparkrun, the idea is to run at seven consecutive parkrun venues and the first letters of each venue’s name combined spells out the word ‘parkrun’, which my running friend Steve Stockwell (aka blog7t) has completed.

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I have decided to run at 10 venues with the first letters of each venue to spell ‘Rory Sowden’ and complete the challenge on my 100th parkrun.  I have decided to do this challenge to combine two things that I love, our son Rory and Parkrun.  Once completed I will able to take a screenshot of my results page together with Rory’s name, which I will be able to keep forever.

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Always Loved, Never Forgotten #Running4Rory

In order to complete the challenge. I will need to complete the venues in reverse order and finishing at a venue beginning with ‘R’.  My plan is to complete my 100th parkrun at ‘Royal Tunbridge Wells’ due to there being a Tunbridge Wells SANDs group (Stillbirth and Neonatal Death charity) and I’m hoping I might be able to raise awareness about Stillbirth during my challenge.

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Club T-shirt I will be able to claim at end of challenge

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Dunorlan Park – home to Royal Tundbridge Wells parkrun (Photo courtesy of blog7t)

 

This is not a difficult challenge, it just requires planning in advance.  The problem I had was finding a parkrun beginning with ‘Y’, after searching the parkrun website I found there is only two in the UK, York or Yeovil Montacute.  Either way both venues requires a fair bit of travelling.

 

Below is my planned list of events I hoping to visit on the planned dates, which could be subject to change due to other commitments and any cancellations.

 

 

Week Event Planned Date
     
Week 1 Nonsuch 21/05/2016
Week 2 Eastbourne 04/06/2016
Week 3 Dulwich 11/06/2016
Week 4 Whistable 18/06/2016
Week 5 Old deer park 25/06/2016
Week 6 Sittingbourne 09/07/2016
Week 7 Yeovil Montacute 16/07/2016
Week 8 Riddlesdown 23/07/2016
Week 9 Orpington 30/07/2016
Week 10 Royal Tunbridge Wells 06/08/2016

 

 

I’ve currently completed 90 parkruns and will start my quest at Nonsuch Park in Cheam this Saturday.  If anyone of my running friends wishes to join me at any event, feel free to come along.