Courtesy of Yorkshire Evening Post | Written by: Daniel Sheridan | Photo by: LTHT | Published: 10.11.2021 | Posted: 10.16.2021
For the only bereavement midwife at the Leeds trust, Baby Loss Awareness week is a poignant reminder of the cruellest loss suffered by families in the city.
Tracy Campey, 51, has supported many families in Leeds “during the worst time of their lives” since she took over the role in early 2019.
On a day to day basis, Tracy – who was born at St James’s Hospital and spent her life in Leeds – comforts parents when they’re faced with the worst news imaginable.
However, her story is also one of hope – with her work in the Rainbow clinic in Leeds allowing her to see the light at the end of the tunnel for many families who go on to have a rainbow baby.
Tracy – whose positivity and compassion radiates during her interview – said she loves her job and “very unique role”.
Speaking to the YEP to mark the awareness week, Tracy said grief can be isolating and lonely, but she wants families to know that support is available.
She also urged any mothers who notice a change in the pattern of their babies movements, or if they just feel something is wrong , to seek advice from their midwife as soon as possible.
“When women are pregnant, unless they are exposed to baby loss in their lives previously, it is often seen as a taboo subject.
Tracy Campey, 51, has supported many families in Leeds “during the worst time of their lives” since she took over the role in early 2019. Pic: LTHT
“It is such a hard thing to talk about.
“We can never prevent [babies dying] fully, but we can do a lot to reduce it.
“There is still a lot of ignorance towards the subject and that is why the awareness week is so important to us.”
Tracy told the YEP she is often affected by the stories and pain of families in her care.
“It does have an impact on my emotional wellbeing too, losing one baby for any family is one baby too many”, she said.
“Many times I will cry on a colleagues shoulder, grief is such a raw emotion.
“However, although its a very sad job, it can be incredibly rewarding too.
“Just today, I have spoken to a mum who has sadly been told her baby has died, it’s absolutely devastating , but what she doesn’t know is that in the back of my mind there is a glimmer of hope that one day, she will hopefully go on to have a Rainbow baby.
“Bereaved families often find it difficult to have to keep repeating their story, but when they attend our Rainbow clinic they don’t have to, because we already know it.”
Baby Loss Awareness Week is described as an opportunity “to bring together a community and give anyone touched by pregnancy and baby loss a safe and supportive space to share their experiences and feel that they are not alone”.
In Leeds, it will be marked by the Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust with an online ‘Wave of Light’ event on Friday October 15.
A reading and a song will be shown on a stream on the Leeds Teaching Hospital Trust Facebook, with the names of babies as a commemoration.
The awareness week runs from October 9 to October 15.
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