I am deeply saddened to welcome you to the baby loss community, but I do so with open arms, a listening ear & a warm heart.
You may be experiencing a mixed whirlwind of emotions and you may not know what to do and where to turn.
To try and help ease some worry I have compiled the knowledge I have learnt since founding Little Baby & Co in winter 2011 after the loss of my 3rd early gestation angel baby through both You my personal experience and well meaning advice I’ve given to the parents who I care for.
I would like to mention that there is no right or wrong way to grieve or say goodbye to your baby, every single person will react differently and each person will find the most suitable way for their own needs.
Many parents who come to us have had the sad news that their baby has died, been given a care sheet and sent home, not knowing what to expect, or even worse have been give NO information at all and feel very confused!
It’s okay, we are here for you, and guide you to the best of our knowledge!
Some parents did not even get to register their pregnancy with a doctor, some never made it to hospital in time.
Some parents have birthed their baby at home, because yes you DID give birth regardless of the heartache.
Many parents have googled “early miscarriage” and found us and would simply like a keepsake in memory of their angel baby or just some comfort in their time of need and just don’t realize that so much more can done to honor their baby but because of the taboo and silence around early miscarriage they are often not informed.
Some parents are feeling sad around significant days such as anniversaries, due dates etc and would like something to remember their baby by, which of course we can do!
The first and the most poignant thing you can do is name your baby, even if it is just a nickname, it is such an important part of your journey, if you have not yet chosen a name, you may notice us refer to you baby as “Baby Your Surname”.
Example, if your name is Anna Jones, we will say Baby Jones, if you would prefer us not too, please mention it, we won’t be offended.
Some may get the sense that their baby was either a boy or a girl and refer to baby as him or her, this is very normal, but also lots of others won’t make assumptions of gender and this is also normal.
We will often speak about you baby in a unisex term “they”, “them”, “their” or use Baby(Your Surname) until we know otherwise.
It is okay to see your baby, if you are in hospital please tell the person who is caring for you and make your wishes clear.
Take a photograph, many families regret not taking one, if you feel you can’t and you are in a hospital do ask a nurse to do it and keep it on file until/if and when you are ready to look.
You may want to take photos of parents/family members holding baby, and take a close up of face, hands and feet even on super tiny babies under 10 weeks gestation!
Some people opt for the hospital to give baby a cremation service, but should you wish to make your own arrangements, speak with your health professional about the correct paperwork needed as some/most funeral homes will care for and give a burial to a baby of early gestation and this is often done for free.
It is very common when babies of early gestation are cremated that parents DO NOT get ashes simply because baby is too small so please speak to your professional to manage your expectations.
If you wish to take baby home for a private burial in your garden, we provided specialist coffins & wraps for the earliest of babies.
When I lost my 3rd baby I chose to put my baby inside a velvet pouch and in a small jewelry box with a silver bead inside of which myself and husband had duplicates each, I then buried my baby in a large plant pot and put spring flowering bulbs on top as I knew they would be in full bloom each year around the due date, I was happy in the knowledge my baby grew those flowers and feel part of my baby is alive within them.
You can choose to have a pair of bonding bears where yourself and baby have a bear each, when it is time to lay baby to rest you can swap them and each have something that has been close to each other.
You could wash your baby’s wrap, some people feel like they have been able to do little things for their baby, and take note of the washing powder you used, it can be a smell you can either come back to or avoid, the same with certain perfumes, select one that you will wear to the funeral and again you can either remember or avoid this scent.
Take note of the day, the weather, sights & smells you experience, buy a newspaper for the day your baby was born and tuck it away in a special place.
You may wish to dress/wrap your baby, take measurements and footprints if baby is big enough.
Some parents of course don’t get to see their baby and may be feeling a void, but there are many things you can do to say goodbye.
You can do any of the things I’ve mentioned if it is suitable for your situation but in addition you could;
1. Release a balloon or a butterfly.
2. Write a letter to your baby(you could also photocopy a scan picture if you were given one), burn it and collect the ash in a little glass jar, some may scatter this ash, keep it or bury it.
3. Bury a trinket in a memorable place such as a little baby hat, special candle or even the pregnancy test you may still have.
4. Name a star after your baby.
5. Sprinkle flower petals into a river.
6. Go to the beach and write your baby’s name in the sand.
7. Plant a flower, especially something like lavender that will attract fluffy honey bees & beautiful butterflies to your garden.
8. Paint a rock for people to find and re hide.
9. Do a Random Act Of Kindness/RAOK in their memory such as leave a small gift in town for someone to find.
10. Pay it forward and donate £5 to Little Baby & Co in memory of your baby which would pay postage & packaging cost for us to send a care pack to a parent in your situation who may be struggling with money.
Some people just want to have private thoughts to themselves, some will will just want nothing more than a chat and a kind heart.
There are so many other things you will find along the way, you will find the best way that suits you, but please know that you are NOT alone, so please do reach out for support and do whatever you feel is best for yourselves, Little Baby & Co will always be here for emotional support and our inbox is always manned.
We have a few groups you may like to join for support or to keep your mind busy during this difficult time:
SUPPORT FROM US
Sending love and warm wishes on the heartbreaking journey you are about to take!
From Pinks & The Team
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ON THE NEXT STEPS
*IF YOU HAVE GIVEN BIRTH AT HOME*
The interim period between contacting us for dignity wraps and coffins is often such a worry when you don’t know what to do with your baby.
We suggest a few ways in which to do this that will sound perhaps a little difficult on your heart, but in the short term will help care for your baby and keep them in the best condition ahead of home burial.
You may have already laid Baby onto something like a face cloth or similar sized blanket which is fine, but you may wish to cut a 3 inch x 3 inch square of plain clear plastic from a carrier bag(or you can use grease proof paper) to lay them in as a barrier between their delicate skin and the fabric, we know this is not appealing but perhaps you may like to cut a heart shape instead and baby will be “wrapped in your love”?
If baby has stuck to whatever they are laying on you can dampen it by putting water on or water from a spray bottle on Baby to gently lubricate in order to transfer.
We know how shaken or frightened you may feel when making the transfer so we suggest using a large spoon and scooping Baby up gently head end first, then laying Baby onto your plastic heart feet downwards first.
You can then place Baby into a Tupperware box with a lid and putting Baby inside your fridge, we know this is a difficult thought, and no one likes to do this, but it is far kinder to baby’s delicate skin.
Another important method families like to use is to pop Baby into some saline solution
EMERGENCY SALINE RECIPE:
1/2 level teaspoon of salt added into 240ml of boiling water.
Allow the solution to dissolve and cool till cold before use.
It is very important that it is only a level 1/2 teaspoon or the solution will be too strong for tiny babies)
When Baby is in the solution pop them into the fridge during the waiting period for the coffin to arrive, we know this sounds a little unusual but the saline creates a womb like environment for Baby to safely float inside, this gives parent a chance to observe the beauty of Baby in more detail as it will magnify and clarify their tiny features, this will keep Baby plump and how you remember Baby, and it is optimal time to take some beautiful photos!
This method buys you more time to make arrangements for Baby.
When your Little Baby & Co items arrive you will use the first few steps to transfer Baby head first onto a spoon and you can gently guide those tiny feet into the wrap.
We hope that these tips for handling Baby will help you in your time of need.
*APPLICATION FOR ASSISTANCE AND REQUESTING ITEMS*
We will ask you a variety of screening questions and ask you to provide proof of eligibility which will enable us to determine your exact needs and cater for you in a bespoke way.
Please do not be offended or upset by our questions, further down is a sample of things we may ask in your application for assistance
Please do not feel offended by the questions we need to ask, but we do so for a two reasons, one of which is simple and one is complex.
This REASON is simple, most importantly we need to asses your needs.
We need to know the items that we send you will be appropriate for your baby in both size and style, we need to make sure if we do not have the resources to help you that we are able to signpost you to an organisation or charity that can fulfill your needs.
This REASON is complex, I regretfully have to say we get hundreds of requests for items and post them out in good faith only to find our trust has been abused, we have found keepsake items up for resale including our very costly subsidized coffins of which have also been requested as memory boxes.
The coffins are strictly for parents who are having a home burial and will not be issued if you are having a cremation or burial under the care of a funeral home who provide suitable burial vessels for free.
We have had parents ask for a gown URGENTLY for babies that have long ago passed away.
We take fraudulent claims very seriously and perform checks necessary in order to protect ourselves.
As we know that keepsakes and mementos on milestone anniversaries or birthdays are very important to us angel parents we will endeavor to cater to ANY request we receive as long as it is within our power as a charity.
We understand the need a parent has to own a gown that was the size of your baby or no matter how long ago your loss happened, we understand sometimes you need a little teddy to hold, we have a specific stock of these for that purpose, and we understand that sometimes you think of your baby on an approaching anniversary and would like a memory box addition, we can do that too! We just ask people to be honest with us.
Sadly due to REASON 2 outlined above in order to receive our items we have to ask for documentation as PROOF OF ELIGIBILITY or in the absence of documentation we will accept a photograph of baby. This will be asked of ALL PARENTS WITHOUT EXCEPTIONS.
*BY USING OUR SERVICE YOU ARE AGREEING TO OUR TERMS*
Sample of questions you may be asked:
If request is for a loss that happened in the past or you are requesting a special type of keepsake, please alert us immediately as some questions are not applicable to you*
Baby’s gestational age:
How did your loss happen:
Is Baby measuring bigger/smaller than gestational age:
Has Baby been born or due to be born:
Was Baby born at home or hospital:
If Baby was born at hospital, when are you due to bring little one home:
Are you planning a home burial for Baby, if so what date?
Are you planning a funeral/cremation for Baby, if so what date?
Can you give an approximate size of Baby:
*We understand this is hard so if baby is at hospital/funeral home you may find this measurement on your notes, if baby is at home you can either measure Baby’s length or place an object such as a finger ring or 1p coin next to or near baby and take a photograph for us to get an idea of gown/pouch/wrap size that is needed.*
*We can accept doctors or midwife notes, hospital discharge letters, your most recent ultrasound scan any of which must show your name, address and details of your pregnancy, the ultrasound scan must show your name and date, if you did not make it as far as getting documentation for your pregnancy as many of us loose so early we will accept a photograph of your baby to show your eligibility to our service.
If you do not have any of this please discuss this with us further.
All documents are confidential, only view able by the Little Baby & Co team.
Your information is not viewable to any member of the public and will not be passed to any 3rd party.
We supply all our items for FREE whilst coffins are greatly subsidized.
We request that in order to keep our charity running we ask you to cover our postage and packaging costs which must be paid by everyone with no exceptions before we will post out.
Minimum postage & packaging cost is £5 unless otherwise discussed.
Care Packages typically include a small receiving blanket, either a tiny wrap or gown, two tiny teddies, an organza keepsake and a poem card with our details.
Coffins are £15 and will come with a care package as listed above plus 4 screws to secure the lid.
PayPal details are:
Bank transfer details are:
Little Baby And Co
Account Number: 43288439
Sort Code: 20 62 69
Once you have read all information above please speak to one of the Little Baby & Co team members via Facebook page so we can get your request underway by clicking here.