On International Women’s Day, mum of four, Cecilia Leslie, tells us about what it’s like being a mum, a midwife and how Sands helped her cope when a baby died neonatally at her work.
I was born in Brazil and my children were all born in Scotland, so not quite the same in terms of climate, but we try to make the most of the dull and dark days.
My pregnancies were overall OK. They were different, but the fear of losing the babies was always my biggest fear. I made sure I attended all my midwife’s appointments, and kept track of baby’s movements.
Being a midwife was very helpful for most of the time, as I was able to fully comprehend what was going on in my body and it made making decisions about my care a lot easier.
I meet a lot of people in my job as a midwife and I admire the strength of women, the resilience of a newborn and the support of family and friends during the birthing process.
I am also a brand representative at Poco Nido, who are an award-winning British brand who make footwear for babies and children. I recently nominated Sands to be their charity of the year for two main reasons.
Firstly, I have seen first-hand the absolute devastation that stillbirth and neonatal death causes. It’s heart-breaking to watch and be part of that loss as a midwife.
Secondly, the charity isn’t just there for the bereaved parents, they are there for the wider family and friends and healthcare professionals who are affected by stillbirth and neonatal death too.
I was delighted to learn that my nomination of Sands to be Poco Nido’s charity partner was successful. Sands will now partner with the company in 2019 and is taking tiny steps to help save babies’ lives through the sale on their gorgeous Carnival and Hot Air Balloon print mini shoes.
Personally, I had an incredibly deep and sad case that impacted me in a way I never thought possible. It was a neonatal death in 2012 at my work. I was in absolute shock, and I didn’t sleep, eat or stop crying for weeks.
I knew I needed help and Sands was there for me and helped me through it all. They are amazing at what they do and without them I don’t think I would still be a midwife.
When that baby died I was profoundly affected. So many years later I still remember dates and I have never been able to enter that particular labour room again.
Not only do I see the amazing work Sands does for bereaved families, they have resources for healthcare professionals as well as part-funding for jobs for dedicated bereavement care midwives.
I’m glad that Sands is here to support healthcare professionals like me and everyone affected by the death of a baby, from the very beginning of a loss, offering help all the way for as long as they need it.
Click here for further information on the many ways Sands can support you