Supporting the Bereaved
We are so honoured to be welcoming Melissa Krawecki for this incredibly valuable workshop, geared towards doulas and other birth workers who may support families through perinatal and infant loss.
Melissa has used grief to propel her work as a blogger (AvasTree.com) and author of her recently published book “In the Shade of Ava’s Tree” . She works alongside the bereaved in honoring grief as well as teaching birth workers about loss and birth trauma. A PTSD survivor, EMDR advocate and experienced in pregnancy after loss she has created the “Navigating Pregnancy after Loss” and “Supporting the Bereaved” workshops, among others, all tailored toward these experiences. Melissa facilitates several grief groups and donates her time in her community as co-creator of the Elgin Community Pregnancy, Infant and Child Peer Support Group.
She stands at the foot of my bed and stares.
I see her there. She is pulling on her scub top and avoiding my eyes. I feel her anxiety radiate and fill the room. She is young, so young or perhaps I am old and wise after the last week. She hides behind my chart, I wonder what she is seeing. Fetal demise? HELLP syndrome? Subcapsular hematoma? Nervously she shuffles and half smiles at me before unintelligibly saying she is “going to be right back.”
Sure, I think. Just don’t bring back the nurse that cries.
The one that clung my shoulders and sobbed, saying she has three babies and she cannot IMAGINE losing one. Must be nice. I have one, I lost one. Why does she get three? She sobbed and buried her head into my neck saying how lucky I am to be alive. If this is what lucky feels like, I sure do not want to be unlucky. I patted her back and told her it was okay. Me! Telling her it would be okay. In retrospect that may have been the stupidest thing anyone has said ever in the history of life itself.
It isn’t okay. I am not okay. Me comforting her is not okay.
All the rules seem smashed to smithereens now. Up is down, left is right, wrong is now my existence and I see the panic in the eyes of those around me trying to help me having no idea how. Babies aren’t supposed to die. I am the pirah, the freak, the outsider officially evicted from the living baby club and they have no idea what to do with me.
I wish someone could help me. I wish someone knew what to say to help take away this pain. I wish I weren’t so alone.
This is an actual journal entry I wrote after coming home after my daughter Ava died. After my liver bruised and ruptured, my life imploded into trauma and upheaval. I had a wonderful support system often whom knew the exact right thing to say and how to support me. I also fell victim to many whom did not. “Supporting the Bereaved Through Infant Loss and Trauma” is a workshop for birth workers designed by a loss Mama, Loss and Parent Educator Melissa Krawecki. Learn how to support families from the perspective of a patient. Gain effective strategies to help ease this heavy time and to end the cycle of trauma. Learn what to say, what not to say and how to assist honoring their loss through memorials.
I will answer the big questions of “what will I see” “what do I need to know” as a birth worker
Workshop participants will gain an in depth knowledge and understanding of Infant Loss and Birth Trauma from the perspective of a patient and parent
Learn tangible and effective things to say and not say to bereaved families in the face of Infant Loss
Explore how to help a patient experiencing or recovering from Birth Trauma including Infant Loss and how to help them on the road to healing
Discuss how to support a family in time of trauma and loss including spouses and extended family
Gain a further understanding of how to help families memorialize their loved one through the use of ritual and memorials
Cost: $70 payable to The Nesting Instinct.
Spaces WILL be limited as we would like to honour this workshop by providing a safe and intimate environment.
Contact Amanda to register: Amanda@nestinginstinctkw.com