The first part of my new collaboration with Made In Snetty goes on sale today – it’s been a long time in the making and the designs have a meaning behind them that I very much wanted to share with you all as it’s something that is close to both mine and Ruth’s hearts.
It’s a personal one so I’m taking a deep breath and telling you the story that inspired the designs…
… on July 2nd 2014 I had a miscarriage.
I can remember everything about that day – what I was wearing, what I did, how I felt.
It was one of the most devastating things I’ve ever been through, it changed me in many ways (both good and not so good) and it’s only really been the past couple of years that I’ve been able to talk about it.
Even seeing it written down still makes me internally recoil, I hate thinking about it, I hate talking about it – but I really feel I must.
You see, despite the fact 1 in 4 women have experienced a miscarriage, I had never felt more alone when I went through mine.
I have a supportive husband and a loving family who were truly amazing, but in hindsight what I really needed was some counselling to help me navigate the emotions that I went through, both at the time and for a long time after.
We were only eight weeks pregnant when it happened and had already had a successful pregnancy (our beautiful boy Charlie had arrived safely three years earlier) so the attitude from my GP and the doctors I saw was very much ‘well you can try again’, which of course we could, and we did.
At the time I wanted support to help grieve the baby we had lost, not to think about trying again.
Our story has a happy ending, our rainbow baby, Holly, came along in October 2015 and made our family complete.
My pregnancy with her was straightforward and uncomplicated but I still felt as though I held my breath until she arrived, just waiting for something to go wrong. We didn’t know why I had the miscarriage with the previous pregnancy so everything felt delicate and uncertain when I was carrying her.
We are the lucky ones though and I’m acutely aware of this – my heart aches for those parents with empty arms and those who have been through multiple miscarriages or even still births.
The reason I’m telling you all of this?
I strongly feel that treatment of women (and men) who suffer miscarriage needs to change. I believe counselling should be offered to both parents, whatever stage of pregnancy you’re at and whether it’s your first or third miscarriage, help should be offered (both medial and emotional) where needed.
You shouldn’t have to lose three babies to get miscarriage support.
It took me a long time to understand that I was allowed to grieve for the little life that we had lost, that it was a form of bereavement and that it wasn’t ‘just one of those things’.
I felt so low, so sad and so lost for such a long time, if I can help just one woman feel less alone by writing this post then I will be happy.
In the immediate aftermath of our miscarriage my sister sent me a little plaque that says ‘When it rains look for rainbows, when it’s dark look for stars.’
When Ruth suggested we collaborate again, I knew I wanted these words on the designs and a charity donation for each sale.
The first two designs we’re releasing are embroidered on the softest, snuggliest most gorgeous sweatshirts and zip-up hoodies.
My hope is that whether you’re going through a tough time or know somebody who is, they will provide the wearer with a little comfort (a hug in hoodie form). They make the most perfect gift to let somebody know you’re thinking about them during a difficult time.
A percentage of every sale will be donated to Tommy’s – a charity whose ethos and beliefs are very much aligned with my own, you can click here to read more about the work they do.
Ruth has done the most beautiful job of allowing me to bring this collection to life and I hope in some small way we can open up conversations with women (and men) who are suffering silently and raise money for the wonderful work Tommy’s do too.
You can view and purchase the collection here.
If you’re reading this having suffered a miscarriage at any point please know you are never alone and there are people out there who know exactly how you feel. Have the courage to seek them out if you need to, we are here waiting.