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What if your story never ends, perhaps, our lives are interconnected. I’m going to live for the both of us 💜 . . . #griefjourney #siblinglossurvivor #siblingloss #hopeful #liveyourbestlife #livethislife #nature #healing

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findingawayforward. Today is the first day of Pancreas Disease Awareness Month!
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4 year

Today is the first day of Pancreas Disease Awareness Month! . . 4 years ago I didn’t have any understand or knowledge about the pancreas, what it does, where it is and the detrimental effects it can have on a person if they have a if problem with their pancreas. . I will share a fact a day in my story about the pancreas. In honour of Bea! . To kick-it off, let's start with the basics, so we understand WHY education and advocacy of this disease is so important: *The pancreas is an organ in the upper abdomen. It is approximately 6 inches long and is located behind the stomach. *The pancreas has 2 main functions: It makes enzymes, which help digest proteins, fats, and carbohydrates before they can be absorbed in the intestine. It makes hormones (chemicals made from glands), the most important of which is insulin, which control how the body uses and stores sugar (glucose), its main source of energy. If your body isn't digesting food right, you will feel a lot of pain. . . #pancreaticdisease #pancreaticdiseaseawareness #chronicpancreatitis #acutepancreatitis #pancreatitis #cp #ap #necrosis #purpleribbon #PANCaware #pancreatitissucks #digestivedisorders #digestivediseases #awareness #raisingawarenes #griefsucks #lifeiscruel #factoftheday #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #afteraloss #death #deathclub

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kyla_preston1. 3 years ago you left us, and it has never been the same again.
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3 years ago you left us, and it has never been the same again. __________________________________ Words cannot describe how much I miss you. Your voice, your laugh, your touch, your skin, your smell, your walk, your humour, your fashion sense, your whole entire being. I would give anything up just to be with you one more time with you to capture all of that up in a jar. To let them out when I miss you the most. I’m so scared of forgetting all of these things. __________________________________ I’m petrified of the forever growing gap between us. How much has changed in three years, and yet my feelings and pain for you have remained the same. We were meant to grow old together. It was never supposed to be this way, our sisterhood should never have been capped at 24 years. I’m not sure how I’m meant to live the rest of my life without you and this forever growing gap. Who ever said time was a healer was a liar. __________________________________ Wherever you are, I hope you know I love you with every ounce of my body, and I miss you even more. __________________________________ #deathanniversary #angelversary #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. 3 years ago you left us, and it has never been the same again.
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3 years ago you left us, and it has never been the same again. __________________________________ Words cannot describe how much I miss you. Your voice, your laugh, your touch, your skin, your smell, your walk, your humour, your fashion sense, your whole entire being. I would give anything up just to be with you one more time with you to capture all of that up in a jar. To let them out when I miss you the most. I’m so scared of forgetting all of these things. __________________________________ I’m petrified of the forever growing gap between us. How much has changed in three years, and yet my feelings and pain for you have remained the same. We were meant to grow old together. It was never supposed to be this way, our sisterhood should never have been capped at 24 years. I’m not sure how I’m meant to live the rest of my life without you and this forever growing gap. Who ever said time was a healer was a liar. __________________________________ Wherever you are, I hope you know I love you with every ounce of my body, and I miss you even more. __________________________________ #deathanniversary #angelversary #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. What a lonely shitty week. Annual leave to distract me from this rubbi

What a lonely shitty week. Annual leave to distract me from this rubbish time of year, but no one to share it with. My best friend is dead, my husband is at work, baby boy is at nursery and everyone has moved on. Today was the last day Bea was alive. 3 years, and time hasn’t changed a thing. It’s as painful as the early days of grief. Who said time was a healer?! The only way to beat the sheer misery and loneliness of it all is to go to bed with a bottle of shitty wine (what me and Bea used to drink) minus a glass! . . #ifeellikeanalien #lonely #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. Over the last three years I’ve spent a lot of time scrabbling around f

Over the last three years I’ve spent a lot of time scrabbling around for helpful information, support groups, meet ups, podcasts, books.... you name it I’ve looked for it and have put together a comprehensive list of stuff that has been helpful for me in the early stages of grief as well as my ongoing journey with grief and living with the loss. . Does anyone else have any other recommendations to add to the list?! . . #recommendations #griefinformation #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. Today we went to a #dayofthedead festival at @arnosvalecemetery, which

Today we went to a #dayofthedead festival at @arnosvalecemetery, which was organised by @vivalosmuertos, with face painting by @livinginabubbleart and food by @iscreamtacos. _______________________________________________________ Dia De Los Muertos is a Festival that celebrates the lives of those whom have passed on. It is not to mourn but to celebrate their life through a colourful skull, ornate flowers and fond memories placed on an Ofrenda. This is a Festival of the life of all the dead whom have passed. As the boys are now 3 I thought this was a perfect way of celebrating Briony with them, and channeling their loss in a creative and positive way. Especially with Briony’s anniversary falling on the 30th October, it felt right to do this with them at this time. It’s also something Briony would have totally enjoyed 💛 Rowan kept saying it was a party for his mummy 💔💛🐝 _______________________________________________________ We had a perfect afternoon making traditional Dia De Los Muertos crafts including: Decorating our own traditional 'Calavera de Azucar' (real sugar skull) with piping icings. Sugar skulls are decorated in honour of those who have passed away to celebrate their life and spirit. We created traditional paper Marigold flowers as used to decorate the offering tables of loved ones who have passed on. We decorated a Sugar Skull Masks and had our faces painted! _______________________________________________________ We ended our crafting session with going down to the crypt to the Ofrenda, put together by @otomiuk (I visited the shop last month and spoke to the lady for a little while about Bea, that’s how I found out about this event!), where we placed a picture of Bea and Elijah’s late grandad, with all the other pictures. They said they loved them and told them to behave. _______________________________________________________ It’s so hard taking about death and the loss so bluntly and matter of fact with the boys, but this has been a really positive experience with them 💛 I totally recommend this to anyone or any age!

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findingawayforward. @thecompassionatefriendsuk shared this article about saying goodbye, w

@thecompassionatefriendsuk shared this article about saying goodbye, which was written by Dargie Sims and published by @bereavementmag. ____________________________________ This resonated with me because on a daily basis I live with the regret and the pain of not being able to say goodbye and I love you to Bea; face to face, hand in hand. I’d give anything to be able to say those things to her. I have so much resentment and anger that we didn’t get to be with her when she died; to know she wasn’t in pain, she wasn’t scared, that she was asleep when it happened, and most of all that she wasn’t alone. ____________________________________ But no, I had a new born baby and recovering from a c section, unable to go she her as often as I wanted and needed to. We had that phone call in early hours of the morning to say she was unresponsive. That it was a lie, she was already dead. She died alone, in the middle of night, and no one really understands how or what happened. And that’s something I play over and over in my mind. The different scenarios. ____________________________________ Hours after THAT call we were meant to be visiting her with the babies dressed as skeletons, to trick or treat, as it was the Sunday before Halloween. It was her favourite time year, more so than Christmas. When I got THAT call, I thought I’d get there and she’d be in ICU again. I didn’t comprehend death. I took my maternity shorts and kindle for her, I promised I’d take them to her that day. ____________________________________ I live with regret and heartbreak that only 12 hours before she died she asked me to come see her. I would have been able to kiss her and say good night. I so so wish that I went. That’s my biggest mistake in life. At least it would have been a half good bye and I love you, the last touch and smell of her skin. But I do know the last words we said to one another at the end of call was “I love you”. ____________________________________ I just wish she knew how much I love her and how so proud of the mummy she was, and how far she got and what she had achieved. ____________________________________ I LOVE YOU BEA!!!!!

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findingawayforward. This mornings commute is brought to you by one tearful and emotional M

This mornings commute is brought to you by one tearful and emotional Mummy, a magic bag of make that makes me look less tired, hand cream for my cold dry hands, life saving anti depressants and the start of thyroxine. . . A little snap of my staple objects, without them I’d be a mess of a human being at the moment. Life is tough, and unfair and utterly complex. 2 weeks until Briony’s 3rd anniversary, I miss her more than ever and so desperately need to talk to her. This time of year is hard, I can’t help but relive each day. Feeling guilty and heart broken I couldn’t spend more time with her. Feeling angry we didn’t know she was going to and being able plan the last days of her life. This is something that’s very close to home at the moment as my father in law is reaching the end of his life. I’m scared of visiting him and seeing him ill, in a clinical environment so close to Briony’s anniversary. I feel like a big ball of a mess, and I feel like I’m not helping my husband in the way he might need me to. I think people expect me to suck it up, and get over what I went through through Briony, because this isn’t about Briony, it’s about Dan and his family. But with this falling at an already difficult and traumatic time of year for me, I’m not sure I can ‘suck it up’. Especially because Briony’s investigation is due to be completed around her anniversary. Another whack of information about her death around the anniversary of her death... that’s a hard pill to swallow. . . This time of year has also brought me worry about my own health; hence starting thyroxine. It has welcomed Dan starting a new job this week and my son starting. Three more massive changes on top of the anniversary and the dying; which is why I’m emotional this morning. My son was hysterical when I dropped him off at nursery, which consumed me Mum guilt. I just feel so out on control with everything. I feel powerless and really scared of how the next few weeks will pan out. All I can do is keep going, keep talking and hold on to any little wins.

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findingawayforward. I read this article the other day, shared by @mhfaengland. It really m

I read this article the other day, shared by @mhfaengland. It really made me think about my mental health since losing Briony, & it being world mental health day on 10/10. I think it’s great that people are talking about mental health illnesses & it is raising awareness. But talking about it openly one day a year isn’t enough. Especially when most people shy away from people who really suffer with their mental health. I have found no one asks about IT; the depression, the anxiety, the PTSD. Why? I don’t know. But how can people ask for help and openly talk about it if they don’t feel like they can. Especially when they are feeling shit & in a dark place. . . It made me think about how I’ve been feeling for the last month. Honestly, it’s the worst I have ever felt. I’ve thought about how many times have I been asked if I feel suicidal? Truth is; apart from health care professionals, I’ve only been asked once by a friend probably in the earlier stages of my grief. The hard truth is that yes I have had suicidal thoughts and feelings over the last month. I reached out for help from a mental health charity too, to be told “sorry, you don’t live in the area so we won’t talk to you or see you unless you want to pay”. MASSIVE knock back. I’ve told people I’m not coping & I’m struggling to the point I feel like I’m drowning very slowly but only have told other bereaved siblings that I’ve felt suicidal, and what I’ve been thinking. These are people I’ve only spoken to online. They don’t see ME. . . This article is informative for those who’s family & friends have mental health illnesses, & how to spot behaviour that isn’t right for them. 1) assess warning signs: has this person withdrawn? Are they eating? Are they showering? 2) ask the question directly: do you have thoughts of suicide? Do you feel suicidal? 3) Explore assess the risks: do they live alone? Are there obvious triggers? Do they have plans to end their life? Give them Samaritans number. Call 999 if there is a cause for concern if they are an immediate risk to themselves. 4) Find our if they have support: ask about therapies, appointments with GP or mental health teams? 5) Listen: let them talk.

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findingawayforward. @siblinglossawarness on Facebook share this yesterday. .
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Sibling los

@siblinglossawarness on Facebook share this yesterday. . . Sibling loss awareness day is today - although it isn’t official it’s a day for us to celebrate, post and talk about of siblings! . . Would loose to hear about your siblings and if you’re happy to, share a picture of them too. . . This is my gorgeous and funny little sister Briony, she’s been gone 3 years at the end of October 💔🐝 not sure how I’ve lived 3 years without her. . . Let’s celebrate their lives and raise awareness of this overlooked loss! . . #siblinglossawareness #overlooked #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. Stupid posts like this on Facebook are why I avoid social media, and w

Stupid posts like this on Facebook are why I avoid social media, and why social media makes me feel like poo. . . I’d do anything for a chat with my sister! Salt to the wound seeing that this evening. . . #salttothewound #badtiming #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. Anyone else find the run up to heir siblings anniversary impossible? .

Anyone else find the run up to heir siblings anniversary impossible? . . I’ve really been struggling the last month. I don’t know how to process a lot of my thoughts and feelings. I don’t know how to talk to people about how I’m feeling and what’s going on in there. . . I just keep pushing all the thoughts and feelings back down. Then they all bubble over all of a sudden and it’s all just so overwhelming. . . I feel like I can’t talk about it out loud anymore because it will be 3 years at the end of the month. It feels like people expect me to be ok with it now, and ‘back to normal’. There is just so much pressure. . . How do you cope with the run up to significant events and milestones? . . The picture was done by my husband 💛 the sheet music is Shania Twain’s ‘Man I feel like a woman’ - a favourite of mine and Briony’s growing up 💛 . . #significantdates #milestones #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. Today is World Sepsis Day, just over 3 years ago I didn’t really know

Today is World Sepsis Day, just over 3 years ago I didn’t really know what sepsis was, the risks of sepsis and I would not have believed that sepsis would have been a contributing factor to my sister, Briony’s, death. . . This is Briony and her son, 7 and a half weeks after he was born. A couple of days after coming off of ICU. None of his was anticipated or expected. After a difficult pregnancy and a lot of pain, it turns out that pain she was experiencing was gallstones. Gallstones that were undiagnosed and untreated until it was too late. It was too late because a gallstone moved and became stuck in her gallbladder causing the pancreas to digest itself; she developed severe necrotic acute pancreatitis. . . After weeks and weeks of fighting so lost her battle. Which no one expected at all. The pancreatitis was so necrotic, 3 disease process took her life: DIC, acute myocarditis and SEPSIS!!!!! . . Mortality due to severe maternal sepsis has increased in the UK and is now the leading cause of direct maternal death in the UK. . . Briony is one of those mothers that cruelly got taken away from their baby, when they should be here enjoying them. . . What is sepsis? Sepsis can be triggered by an infection in any part of the body. The most common sites of infection leading to sepsis are the lungs, urinary tract, tummy (abdomen) and pelvis. If untreated it can lead to multiple organ failure and even death. . . What are symptoms? There is no single symptom of sepsis, if you have one of these seek medical attention and ask ‘could the be sepsis?’ Confused or disorientated Short of breath High heart rate Flu like symptoms Extreme pain or discomfort Sleepiness Feeling like you might die Pale or discounted skin . . #sepsis #sepsisseptember #worldsepsisday #sepsisawareness #sepsisawarenessmonth #awareness #couldthisbe #sepsisuk #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport

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findingawayforward. What a beautiful morning. .
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I’d like to think that after a very rest

What a beautiful morning. . . I’d like to think that after a very restless night and very little deep sleep, Briony has shone the sun through my bedroom window, to tell me it’s ‘ok’. The heat was so warm and comforting, it felt like she was there. Telling me she’s looking out for me and protecting me with her warmth💛🐝 . . Do you ever take the weather a sign that your brother or sister is there? . . #significantdates #signsfromheaven #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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kyla_preston1. This picture probably doesn’t mean a lot to anyone. Most people probab

This picture probably doesn’t mean a lot to anyone. Most people probably have never seen this picture before now, or understand why it means so much to me. . . This picture was taken exactly 3 years ago. The day Briony was admitted to hospital. She was admitted and never got to leave again. It was the second day of my maternity leave and the second day I was left with my new born nephew. I was feeling so many emotions. 🖤Fear; of looking after a new born who wasn’t mine, and that Briony wasn’t going to get to come home again. 🖤Worry; that I was going to get it all wrong and Briony would be upset with me, and worry about Briony’s health at that time. Worried about her being away from her baby for long periods of time. 🖤 Guilt; that she had to leave her baby with me, and I got to spend time with him whilst she was so ill in hospital. 🖤Confused; I didn’t understand what was going on with Briony. I didn’t know what was wrong with her and I wanted to be with her. I couldn’t split myself into two. 🖤 Angry; why did they send her home the previous day? What did they miss? . . That first day our whole lives changed and we had no idea what was installed for us. This picture of her son on my chest much in lots of ways. But it marks the begin. Of. The. End. It marks Briony’s first and final admission to hospital; where she spent the last part of her life. It marks the begin of those sequence of events that lead to her death. . . These pictures document those last weeks of her life, and these are pictures I haven’t shared with anyone, and probably won’t for a very long time. I don’t look at them often but when I do, they sting and burn my heart. But then I don’t need to look at the pictures to have vivid images in my mind. . . I wish that I could forget most of the things that happened. They are so traumatic and painful, but I can’t erase them because they mattered to Briony and those are the last moments and memories of her life. . . When I look them It hits me, 3 years. How will it 3 whole years? It only feels like yesterday but it also feels like a lifetime. How am I going to get through the next 8 weeks?!

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findingawayforward. This picture probably doesn’t mean a lot to anyone. Most people probab

This picture probably doesn’t mean a lot to anyone. Most people probably have never seen this picture before now, or understand why it means so much to me. . . This picture was taken exactly 3 years ago. The day Briony was admitted to hospital. She was admitted and never got to leave again. It was the second day of my maternity leave and the second day I was left with my new born nephew. I was feeling so many emotions. 🖤Fear; of looking after a new born who wasn’t mine, and that Briony wasn’t going to get to come home again. 🖤Worry; that I was going to get it all wrong and Briony would be upset with me, and worry about Briony’s health at that time. Worried about her being away from her baby for long periods of time. 🖤 Guilt; that she had to leave her baby with me, and I got to spend time with him whilst she was so ill in hospital. 🖤Confused; I didn’t understand what was going on with Briony. I didn’t know what was wrong with her and I wanted to be with her. I couldn’t split myself into two. 🖤 Angry; why did they send her home the previous day? What did they miss? . . That first day our whole lives changed and we had no idea what was installed for us. This picture of her son on my chest much in lots of ways. But it marks the begin. Of. The. End. It marks Briony’s first and final admission to hospital; where she spent the last part of her life. It marks the begin of those sequence of events that lead to her death. . . These pictures document those last weeks of her life, and these are pictures I haven’t shared with anyone, and probably won’t for a very long time. I don’t look at them often but when I do, they sting and burn my heart. But then I don’t need to look at the pictures to have vivid images in my mind. . . I wish that I could forget most of the things that happened. They are so traumatic and painful, but I can’t erase them because they mattered to Briony and those are the last moments and memories of her life. . . When I look them It hits me, 3 years. How will it 3 whole years? It only feels like yesterday but it also feels like a lifetime. How am I going to get through the next 8 weeks?!

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kyla_preston1. Repost from my @findingawayforward page. .
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I hate 2nd September; it’

Repost from my @findingawayforward page. . . I hate 2nd September; it’s one of those significant dates that really do cause the waves to become more frequent. It’s also a date that most people don’t remember or recognise, but it feels as important and significant than her anniversary. . . 3 years ago today, Briony first went into A&E with upper abdominal pain, to be later discharged with a referral to see her GP. Never in a million years did we think she’d end up dead. That she wouldn’t get to become the mum she wanted to be, that she wouldn’t continue with her career or develop romantic relationships. . . The next 8 weeks will be horrendous, and painful. I can’t help but feel and remember what was going on with Briony on day to day basis. Almost reliving it all over again. Nightmares, intrusions, low mood will more than likely become more frequent. . . I might appear ‘ok’ at the moment and over the next 8 weeks; the surface tells a different story to what is underneath. Underneath is lonely, heartbroken and lost. . . #significantdates #traumaticmemories #ptsd #reliving #hardtime #anniversarynearing #3years #shattered #griefandmothergoodjourney #findingawayforward #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #mysisterisanangel #sister #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #death #deathclub #dead #awareness #stigma #talkingdeath

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findingawayforward. I hate 2nd September; it’s one of those significant dates that really

I hate 2nd September; it’s one of those significant dates that really do cause the waves to become more frequent. It’s also a date that most people don’t remember or recognise, but it feels as important and significant than her anniversary. . . 3 years ago today, Briony first went into A&E with upper abdominal pain, to be later discharged with a referral to see her GP. Never in a million years did we think she’d end up dead. That she wouldn’t get to become the mum she wanted to be, that she wouldn’t continue with her career or develop romantic relationships. . . The next 8 weeks will be horrendous, and painful. I can’t help but feel and remember what was going on with Briony on day to day basis. Almost reliving it all over again. Nightmares, intrusions, low mood will more than likely become more frequent. . . I might appear ‘ok’ at the moment and over the next 8 weeks; the surface tells a different story to what is underneath. Underneath is lonely, heartbroken and lost. . . #significantdates #traumaticmemories #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. Thanks @georgiacoan_ for sharing this!
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“When you’re grieving, peop

Thanks @georgiacoan_ for sharing this! . . “When you’re grieving, people will often ask you the same question on a regular basis. . . ‘Are you okay?’ . . I get it. It’s a natural reflex, like saying bless you when someone sneezes or nodding politely when you’ve seen someone more than once on the same tour of the local Tesco. . . It wasn’t until recently that I started thinking about the way I often answered this question after my brother died. And probably still do today, six years on. . . When I’m struggling, I never really answer this question honestly. It’s mainly out of shame because I think I should have my shit together all the time and I expect other people to think the same (which they often don’t). . . But it’s difficult to open up to people sometimes. When people ask if you’re okay, you don’t know if that person is just asking out of politeness. Then I worry I’ll only realise this when I’ve poured my heart out in an epic ten chapter novel about how bloody sad it is I’ll never get to see my brother again yet society expects me to be okay with that. . . Nobody wants to read that book though. That’s a really sad book. I’m not even sure they’d have a section for that in Waterstones. . . Most of the time, I’m just not really sure what to tell you, so the answer is usually always: ‘yeah, I’m alright’. . . It’s not that I don’t want to share myself with you. I’m sure you mean it when you say you’ll listen, but there’s still a lot of stigma around ‘struggling’ and opening up about your grief. Sometimes it’s easier to lie and say you’re coping. People react very differently and those reactions are not always helpful, even though they often mean well.” . . To read the rest of Georgia’s blog visit: https://georgiacoan.co.uk/2019/08/28/are-you-okay/ . . #areyouok #noimnot #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. “The moon is friend for the lonesome to talk to” - Carl Sandburg.
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“The moon is friend for the lonesome to talk to” - Carl Sandburg. . . The night seems to be the time of day when my thoughts are unleashed, and my mind cannot rest. Some enjoy the silence and the stillness that the night brings, but I hate it. . . It signifies the absence of sound, noise and speech. The absence of people; the absence of my sister. . . The night is a lonely dark place, and it allows all of my thoughts, feelings and emotions to take over me; driving me future into the spiteful and vicious pit of sleeplessness and loneliness. . . The silence and the dark smuggle in those uninvited thoughts, instructive images and unwanted memories. . . The night drives me deeper into a lonely void, with no one to share this living nightmare with. . . The silence delivers me a package each night; the realisation that my life will never be the same again. That I cannot share another living moment with my sister, and that’s all I crave. . . Maybe, that’s why the moon exists. So that those drowning in the nights silence, have a lifeline. A familiar face to look to and talk to in the cruel and torturous hours of the morning. We whisper to her because she will keep every single muttered word safe. Maybe, that’s why she has so many craters, each persons secret leaves a mark on her skin. Big craters signify the most unthinkable secrets and she carries them and keeps them safe. . . #nighttime #themoonismyfriend #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. Bank holidays come paired with family time and what seems to be like r

Bank holidays come paired with family time and what seems to be like really happy times, and sharing special moments with people we love. . . For me, this August bank holiday, is just so difficult and so sad. Despite it being my husbands 30th birthday. . . August bank holidays were always spent with my sister, and spending time together. It so very hard putting on a front and being happy when inside I just want to hide away and cry. I feel so jealous when I see families together, and so guilty for being ‘happy’ when I’m spending time with friends and family. . . My husbands birthday has been hard. Having his family together, when mine will never be whole or complete again. I just makes me miss Briony even more than ever, I crave for days like they used be. I crave for the old days and my normal life. . . #Bankholiday #august #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. Time for me to sign off @survivingoursiblings, but I can’t be a big si

Time for me to sign off @survivingoursiblings, but I can’t be a big sister do that without embarrassing Bea! These are some of the funny, embarrassing photos, including some silly faces she used to pull. They make me smile and feel all warm and fuzzy inside. I hope they made you laugh too?! . . It has been an emotional, and tiring week. But also, a pleasure sharing Bea with so many new people. . . #SSOB #survivingoursiblings #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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survivingoursiblings. Time for me to sign off, but I can’t be a big sister do that without e

Time for me to sign off, but I can’t be a big sister do that without embarrassing Bea! These are some of the funny, embarrassing photos, including some silly faces she used to pull. They make me smile and feel all warm and fuzzy inside. I hope they made you laugh too?! . . Thank you for reading along with me this week, it’s been a pleasure sharing Bea with you all. . . If you’d like to continue following my journey through grief, follow @findingawayforward on Instagram and Facebook. I also have a blog which you can subscribe too: . . https://griefandmotherhoodjourney.blogspot.com/?m=1 . . I look forward to reading along with you all in the future 💛 . . #SSOB #SSOBStory #SSOBStoryKylaandBea #survivingsibling #survivingoursiblings #sisterloss #brotherloss #grief #loss #griefandloss #storytelling #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #siblings #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #death #deathclub

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findingawayforward. I had to fight to get answers to understand why Bea suddenly died.
Her

I had to fight to get answers to understand why Bea suddenly died. Her death was logged as a serious incident which means hospitals ‘should’ investigate openly & honestly about what happened. When we received the cause of death from coroner's report back in Jan ‘17, something didn’t sit right. Natural causes.... complications of pancreatitis. Sepsis; liver and kidney and splen had severe autolysis, fat necrosis to large and small intestines, lungs covered hemosiderin. DIC; Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation. Acute Myocarditis. All 3 disease processes killed her. The big sister in me pushed to get some answers. It took me 3 months to get her medical records, & when they arrived it looked like someone had shuffled them. It took me weeks to sort them in order, me and my baby sat on my lounge floor. Months of reading Bea’s medical records, I knew a completely different side to Briony, & one I didn't want to know. I knew her inside out, literally. I knew all the gory details of her abdominal drainage bags, the hourly events in ICU, the drug errors, the needle prick injury; I knew things I didn't know when she was ill, the pseudo-cysts, Kidney failure, sepsis, necrosis. The worst part was reading the post-mortem report, it is something that haunts me on a regular basis. I then submitted an initial complaint to the hospitals, this was now 6 months on. I questioned so many things, from communications with us as a family to questioning certain treatments. I researched & read medical papers on pregnancy, & gallstones & pancreatitis. I submitted over 100 questions. I had the final response back around Feb ‘18, I wasn’t happy with the quality. I kept banging on doors, getting advice, reading policies. I couldn’t understand why the hospitals were allowed to investigate their own incident. I sent a letter to a clinical governance group and they agreed, quality was poor and nothing was answered properly. They commissioned for someone independent to do a review into Bea’s pathway of care, from pregnancy to death. This has only just started, Aug ‘19, almost 3 years on. I’ll keep going until we know. You don’t just suddenly die at 24, 11 weeks after having your first baby.

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findingawayforward. 03/09/16: Bea collapsed at our family home late in the evening. She co

03/09/16: Bea collapsed at our family home late in the evening. She complained of extreme stabbing pain in her upper abdomen & projectile vomiting. She was rushed to hospital & was later discharged with Cholecysitis, & a referral for gallbladder removal. Little did we know that she was discharged with gallstone pancreatitis without treatment. Undiagnosed gallstones that she had throughout her entire pregnancy. 04/09/16: Bea collapsed again at home. She couldn't move, she couldn't speak, she couldn't breathe properly she was in so much pain. She was rushed back into hospital & that's where she stayed for 9 weeks. We knew little about what was going on with Briony until she was taken seriously ill into ICU. A gallstone had shifted, moved and was lodged in the common bile duct causing the pancreas to digest itself. She had a small part of her pancreas which was still alive; we were told that we should expect the worse outcome that day. Her infection levels were the highest the consultant had ever seen, she had severe necrosis, fluid collections in her abdomen & splenic thrombosis. She had a number of procedures to have gallstones moved, & drains inserted. 23/10/16: the decision to transfer Briony to a specialist ward at another hospital. At this point she now had 3 abdominal drains, barely all residual pancreas tissue remaining, 'Red man syndrome', type 3c diabetic, splenic thrombosis, chest pains & breathlessness, multiple pseudocysts, TPN fed via a PIC line, had a NJ tube & severe sepsis. 28/10/16: Bea had a stent fitted to drain the necrosis & fluid from her pancreas & abdomen. Finally, there was positive news that she was on the right path; they confirmed her heart was fine & collections were exiting via the drains well. 30/10/16: 0400 our world came crashing down. Mum received a phone call to say that we must come to the hospital quickly. I got to the hospital and my Auntie came out of the ward, face pale and sick. She told me I needed to sit down. I collapsed to the floor begging for it not to be true. A nurse had gone in to check on her, and found her dead. Cold. Alone. Blue. 11 weeks earlier she had dreams and a future as a new mum, and it was all taken.

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findingawayforward. So, this is Briony, known to everyone as Bea. 
Bea was born 02/07/92,

So, this is Briony, known to everyone as Bea. Bea was born 02/07/92, exactly 3 and a half years after me, in Bristol UK. We grew up in our family home with our Mum and Dad. Our Dad left the family home in the early 00's, where he remarried, had three more children, and was never to be seen again. Our Mum met her partner in ‘02 and our family increased to five, with the arrival of our little sister in ‘05. Our childhood was difficult and painful at times, but Briony and I shared so many fun and silly moments together, which in hindsight now completely outweigh the bad times. We also shared a lot of tears, harsh words and scraps; but she was still my sister and I loved her with all my being. . . Bea wasn’t very confident growing up, and always looked to me for validation and approval. She had a particularly difficult time with friends at school and in her early adulthood. protected her when she was bullied, I collected her from parties when she was drunk, she told me her secrets and I her her mine. We were as thick as thieves. . . January ‘16 we both found out we were expecting our first babies. She was on her own at this time, but she couldn’t wait to become a mum. It’s something she ALWAYS wanted. Bea’s pregnancy was extremely difficult and problematic; she had numerous admissions to A&E, the GP and midwife. This pain she was experiencing was sharp stabbing upper abdominal pain which radiated to her back. No pathological cause was found and it was never investigated. This pain was continuously associated with her baby being on the larger side and kicking up under her ribs. Along side the sharp stabbing pains, she had nausea, vomiting, reflux, abdominal tenderness. . Bea gave birth to her son, 16/08/16. The birth was traumatic; 3 unsuccessful stretch and sweeps, and a failed induction. Her little boy was having difficulties coming out. She was taken to theatre, where she had: multiple failed epidurals and spinal taps, a failed ventouse and finally with every bit of strength she had he was born with help of foreceps. . . Finally, she became a Mummy! But that was too good be true. Her difficult pregnancy meant so much more than we ever imagined.

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findingawayforward. I got married this year in March. It was the first big thing to happen

I got married this year in March. It was the first big thing to happen in our family since Bea’s death. Bea would have been my bridesmaid, and I wanted to incorporate her into our day as much as possible, without it being over the top and all about her. . . I always loved the venue we picked to get married, which is a Victorian graveyard and old crematorium. It felt like the perfect place to get married, I felt close to Bea here. It brought life and death together for our special day. . . I had a memorial section with pictures of Bea, my grandmother and my husbands grandparents. Not to everyone’s taste but I wanted her face there and for everyone to see it. . . I also had a special glass bead made by @glassbeadsbylotti (picture 2&3). I had the bead tried around my wedding bouquet so that Bea would walk me down the aisle. I wanted her close to me. It was beautiful and subtle. . . Just as an add on, for my mum’s 50th birthday, I had @milkdiamondsjewellery make a special pendant with Bea’s ashes in. I wanted the pendant to look like the night sky. The ashes look like mountains 💛 it was perfect for my mum. Both of these ladies made my sister beautiful again! . . Has anyone else done something different with their siblings ashes? Or has anyone else done something to incorporate their sibling into a special day? . . #SSOB #survivingoursiblings #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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findingawayforward. Today is my last day doing the @survivingoursiblings take over. So I t

Today is my last day doing the @survivingoursiblings take over. So I thought today I’d talk about how I’ve tried to continue bonds with Bea. . . Bea loved tattoos! It was out thing and I expect she would have had a lot more by now. . . Picture 1&2 are when we went to have matching sister tattoos. Even tangoing Bea had a load already she was such a chicken. She had to go first and kept having to stop! I hate that I’m the only half left and that I’m missing the other part to my tattoo. . . Picture 3 is Olivia the Owl. Bea had this random done one today, she loved this tattoo! . . Picture 4 is her little daisy, just because she loved them. I picked daisies for her funeral and I also had them for my wedding bouquet. It made it feel like she picked them 💛 . . Picture 5 is a tribute tattoo Bea had done for our granny. It’s her funeral song. we were very close to our granny, she was like a second Mum. . . Picture 6 is of her mandala on her forearm. It was her most recent tattoo and I loved this one!! I’m going to have this replicated on my thigh. I want to have a mandala for each of my family members eventually 💛 . . Picture 7 is my tattoo I had as a tribute to Bea. We used to call her out little buzzy bee. When she was alive she would by bumble bee jewellery and other stuff. This is something that has continued since her death and my house is now covered in all things bumble bee!! I went back to the tattoo studio where we used to do and I had this done on my right forearm so she is always with me, somewhere I can see her and hold her when I need to. The pain having it done was so bad, but I kept going. I sat and thought about the pain Bea went through in hospital 💛 she was so brave. . . Has anyone else had a tribute tattoo done for their lost sibling? . . #SSOB #survivingoursiblings #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #sibling #siblings #sibbs #mysisterisanangel #sister #brother #loss #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grief #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #talkingdeath #death #deathclub #awareness #stigma

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I got married this year in March. It was the first big thing to happen in our family since Bea’s death. Bea would have been my bridesmaid, and I wanted to incorporate her into our day as much as possible, without it being over the top and all about her. . . I always loved the venue we picked to get married, which is a Victorian graveyard and old crematorium. It felt like the perfect place to get married, I felt close to Bea here. It brought life and death together for our special day. . . I had a memorial section with pictures of Bea, my grandmother and my husbands grandparents. Not to everyone’s taste but I wanted her face there and for everyone to see it. . . I also had a special glass bead made by @glassbeadsbylotti (picture 2&3). I had the bead tried around my wedding bouquet so that Bea would walk me down the aisle. I wanted her close to me. It was beautiful and subtle. . . Just as an add on, for my mum’s 50th birthday, I had @milkdiamondsjewellery make a special pendant with Bea’s ashes in. I wanted the pendant to look like the night sky. The ashes look like mountains 💛 it was perfect for my mum. Both of these ladies made my sister beautiful again! . . Has anyone else done something different with their siblings ashes? Or has anyone else done something to incorporate their sibling into a special day? . . #SSOB #SSOBStory #SSOBStoryKylaandBea #survivingsibling #survivingoursiblings #sisterloss #brotherloss #grief #loss #griefandloss #storytelling #griefandmotherhoodjourney #bereavedsibling #siblingloss #siblinglossurvivor #siblings #lifeafterloss #afteraloss #talkaboutloss #griefsucks #grieftips #griefrevolution #livingthroughgrief #griefsupport #grieving #bereavement #bereaved #death #deathclub

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