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Personal Stories

Laura's Story

I have been a part of Swindon SANDS since January 2011, where my husband and I attended our first support meeting. Since this day I have wanted to write my story and add it to the list on the Swindon SANDS page. It’s now two and a half years down the road for us and I have been trying to write our story within this time. However each time I read it, I remember something else that I have missed and add it into our heartache, however, when thinking about it and thinking about the fact it was going on our own SANDS page, it hit me… I, or should I say WE, had suffered a loss off our baby. It doesn’t matter how you dress it up or down, the simple fact is our first baby girl died at 31wks. For us, it wasn’t so simple though and even to this day there is still no simplicity in our tale. Our hearts are broken and there will always be a piece of us missing. The day our daughter died our lives had changed forever.

If you know me or ever meet me, then I will be more than happy to tell you all about our beautiful daughter Iashia and explain how and why we had suffered this heartache. Give me any opportunity to talk about her and you may end up wishing I would shut up as given half the chance I will take it. You see, with her not being with us every day makes each day that little bit harder to live as my heart breaks for what should have been. Each mile stone she should be taking and achieving, well they only exist in my mind. Who would she be looking like now, Kevin or me? She definitely had the famous Kirby nose, but would have had her daddy’s curly hair. Life was very cruel to us the day they took our baby.

The day Iashia died, was the day I changed forever. I am not the same person anymore. I assume that having children in general, changes you as a person any way, but I am now a shadow of the person I once was… After leaving the hospital 4 days after delivering Iashia with our SANDS memory box, I placed it in what should have been our daughter’s bedroom. I think it took me three weeks to actually go into her room and look through it. Through all the tears, I found the SANDS leaflet and decided to google them. It was like I was on autopilot. I still to this day don’t remember what drove me to get in touch with them, but I can honestly say that I don’t regret it. Emailing Swindon SANDS and getting Cathy’s email back pretty much saved me. Don’t get me wrong, Kevin was absolutely amazing… He wrapped me up in cotton wool and moved heaven and earth to protect me, despite grieving himself over the loss of his father 6 months previously and now his first little girl. My mum was also my rock. I always remember her saying how she was hurting watching me hurt and also was bereft over Iashia. Yet I just needed to be with someone, anyone who knew how I was hurting and also how to treat me.

I felt like a failure. I remember leaving the hospital with empty arms, a heavy heart and no balloons. Stupid eh! I was so desperate for that balloon that I had watched go past the window from my side room whilst on the maternity unit, yet where was mine. I had delivered my baby girl, who was perfectly formed, but who was now just a shell of who she should have been. I had failed myself, my daughter, and my husband. To walk into our home empty handed and face people with nothing to show, made my knees buckle and filled me with tears. Even the people who I thought were my friends avoided me like I had the plague. It’s so true when people say to you that “you find out who your real friends are when you really need them”. So to be with people who just ‘got it’ was even more imperative to my wellbeing.

Walking into our first meeting just 7 weeks after losing our girl was difficult. I cried the minute I walked through the door and remember feeling that it felt like I was attending an alcoholic’s anonymous group. The room was packed and everyone was sat round forming a large circle and I felt like everyone was watching me as I walked through those doors. They probably were watching me, and looking back now, each and every one of them probably just wanted to reach out and hug me. Since walking through those doors I haven’t looked back. Don’t get me wrong, not a day goes by in which I don’t think about Iashia, I also have my good days and my not so good days. Sometimes I just want to hide away under the duvet and cry till I run out of tears, yet other days I am so driven I want to do everything I possibly can to help others who are going through the pain and suffering that I am feeling. I have recently completed my befriender training and have also thrown myself into fundraising for our much needed bereavement suite.

Being a part of SANDS is not something I had ever heard off or ever thought could possibly happen to me, but it is something that I am mow proud off. I still encounter and have to deal with other peoples insecurities about the death of my daughter, I still make excuses for others who will always say inappropriate or inconsiderate comments and yes I have lost respect for people and lost friendships that I thought were lifelong. However, I have a new found respect for my three new best friends who all stepped up to the mark and went above and beyond the call of friendship. I have a new best friend who I call my mum. Kevin and I are more solid than I could ever imagine us being. I have a beautiful angel daughter who I call our second daughter surshia’s guardian angel. And I have SANDS. I have made friendships here with families who truly know of my pain and suffering and I will have these friendships till the day I die. Without SANDS, then I possibly wouldn’t have the lifetime of memories that we made of Iashia within the short time we spent with her. We are fortunate to have casts taken of her feet, a lock of hair, hand and footprints that I have had made into a necklace as well as an abundance of photographs. We got all of this from the SANDS box which we will both cherish forever. I personally feel indebted to those at SANDS and for everything they have given us. We will endeavour to keep Iashia’s memory alive through our own lives and through SANDS.

“We loved you from the moment we knew you were there”
Iashia Kirby-Deacon born sleeping 6th December 2011

Eskimo Proverb: - “Perhaps they are not the stars, but rather openings in heaven where the love of our lost ones shines through to let us know they are with us.”

Click here to see Laura's Photo Memories

About Memories

The memories one creates during the time of loss are very different and unique to every individual.

If you would like to add a page of remembrance, or add your own story and memories then please contact admin@swindonsands.org