My wife and I came to find SANDS Lothians after we lost our twins at 23 weeks. Having twins was not something we had ever expected as there was no history of twins in either of our families. We had no idea how we were going to manage, but having got past the 20 week scan, we were making firm plans for our new life. We moved back from London to be nearer our parents, and bought a nice big house near good schools. We felt we needed the bigger house for our super size family and things were taking shape.
We were in rented accommodation when I came home from work one day to find Sandie upset as she had not felt the twins move. We went to hospital and they confirmed that they could not hear any heart beats. This meant one if not both were dead. We had been having extra scans as our twins shared a placenta which meant a higher risk. So it was never a stress-free pregnancy but you do just expect these things to work out. We came back the following day and they confirmed they were both dead. Our twins.
Sandie was induced and delivered after a short stay in hospital. There were so many decisions to make at that point, it was very overwhelming. No-one could have prepared us for how tough that experience was. The staff who managed our care were so empathetic and the use of the family room at St. Johns Hospital was a welcome space to go through the process in privacy.
Once we were both back at work we struggled to find the time to talk about the twins. We fell pregnant again some 6 months later and it was at this point that we contacted SANDS as issues were bubbling under the surface.
We spoke to Nicola and discussed how group sessions were maybe not for us. She kindly agreed to come to our house to make it as relaxed as possible. The opportunity to talk to someone who had experience of what we were going through was such a relief. Knowing that everything we were feeling was normal and that there was a structure to help us made a huge difference to how we began to deal with the situation. We were given the opportunity to talk about the practical decisions we had faced (burial, cremation etc). The sessions gave us a chance to vent where we had felt let down and to feedback the gratitude we felt for the amazing care at St Johns Hospital in Livingston.
We will always be grateful to SANDS Lothians. Knowing they are there is huge to us. In conjunction with St Johns Hospital Livingston the care we received and the positive impact it had on our family cannot be underestimated. We will continue to support them in any way we can so that others can be helped through similar experiences.