A SPRING Ridge mum grieving the loss of twin sons hopes to raise $12,000 to honour their memory – and give comfort to other mothers whose babies die at birth.
The night before Emily Bridge was due to deliver her twin sons, she was given the worst possible news – that they had both died.
“They were both perfectly healthy up until that time, but the placenta abrupted; it separated from the wall of my uterus too early,” Ms Bridge said.
“I know of a lot of people who have lost babies from the Tamworth area, but I don’t know of anyone who has lost twins the way I did, so late in the pregnancy.
“Having a cuddle cot in the maternity unit at the hospital will allow parents more time to grieve the loss of their baby and to be with their baby longer.”
A cuddle cot is a cooling system designed to fit within a small cot, giving families more time with their babies who have passed away.
It takes away the necessity of being in a mortuary environment and, being portable, gives parents the option of taking their baby home to lay in their own cot, in their own room or travel in their own car seat.
“It’s about giving parents choices and reassuring them that they can spend as much time as they like with their baby, without the fear of the baby needing to be cooled in a traditional mortuary," Ms Bridge said.
Her partner, Matthew Kirby, is right behind Ms Bridge’s campaign, and has already raised $300 by growing his beard last winter for Bears of Hope.
Ms Bridge has the blessing of Tamworth hospital to launch the campaign, and said she was wished well with her fundraising, and that the hospital could definitely use a cuddle cot.
Just recently Multiple Birth Awareness Week carried the theme of “leave no family behind”, which Ms Bridge said touched her deeply.
“As someone who lost both of my multiple babes, I have often felt left behind within the multiple birth community,” she said.
“I can’t wholly blame the community itself for that though as I have purposely distanced myself a bit because it is quite hard to see happy, healthy multiples when mine never made it home.
“This year’s theme is all-inclusive though and it’s beautiful. It’s encouraging to see the words ‘leave no family behind’ emblazoned on a flyer, like a special reassurance that I’m not being forgotten, even though I’m a very different kind of twin mum.”
Ms Bridge lost her babies, Andrew and Eric, on January 30, 2014, but was blessed with the birth of her daughter, Charlotte, on February 5, 2015.
“I just felt I wanted to take another step towards helping other families like mine, in memory of my sweet twin boys, to raise money for two cuddle cots for my local hospital,” she said.
The cot fundraiser, through Bears of Hope, will run for a full year.
Ms Bridge has a Facebook page, Multiply Blessed, where she writes a blog.
The link to donate to her fundraising campaign is www.cuddlecots.gofundraise.com.au/page/cuddlecotsforandrewanderic