Heartfelt & Pillars of Strength

I wanted to spread the word about two truly wonderful organisations here in Australia. They were created out of  tragedy & have now spread their wings to support other families going through the same or similar situations.


The first one I want to present to you is called Heartfelt & they are truly amazing people & angels here on earth. They’re a volunteer organisation of professional photographers from all over Australia who are all dedicated to giving the gift of photographic memories to families that have experienced stillbirths, have premature/sick babies or have children in the Neonatal Intensive Care Units of their local hospitals, as well as children with serious & terminal illnesses. They’re dedicated to providing this gift to families in a caring, compassionate & heartfelt manner. They have done an amazing job at getting known in the major hospitals in Australia, but are always presenting themselves to other hospitals & medical facilities so they’re aware of the work they do & can call on them if ever they need to.

They can be found here: http://www.heartfelt.org.au/ & here on FaceBook: https://www.facebook.com/Heartfelt.Australia

ABC did a story on Heartfelt on 20 June 2012. Click onto this link to watch it: Charity captures memories for families of stillborns





Pillars of Strength

The second organisation I wanted to share with you is called Pillars of Strength. For the time being they are only able to assist NSW families, but are hoping to go Australia wide in the future. Pillars of Strength provide fathers with support & time out they need while their baby/ies are sick, or to provide support & time out after the loss of their baby. The organisation’s Director started this support group after losing his premature son after being in NICU for two days. He saw a need for fathers needing respite as they are the ones that often get overlooked in times like these. The father’s take on the role of supporting their partners while they grieve & recover from the birth, look after other children in the family, deal with medial bills, have to arrange a funeral for their child etc, whilst trying to come to terms with the loss too, which is why their tagline is, ‘dad’s need time off too’. So far they’ve arranged golf days & been able to watch a few NRL games & they hope to be able to be able to help many more families in the future.

They can be found here: http://www.pillarsofstrength.com.au/concrete/ & on FaceBook here: https://www.facebook.com/PillarsStrength. They also recently appeared on The Project & you can watch it here: http://t.co/GOrdhWyv








The things I have learnt in my life. So far….

When I was a teenager & then again in my early twenties, I thought I knew everything about everything. Turns out I didn’t. Fast forward ahem, a few years, I’m reflecting on all the things I’ve done & the lessons learnt. And what’s more I know that the learning never stops. So without further ado, here are some things I’ve learnt over the past few years:

I’ve learnt that babies are not stupid just because they can’t talk. They tell you in their own way what they need.

I’ve learnt that my toddler has bipolar disorder & OCD (please know I am not downplaying the seriousness of these mental illnesses, but they are appropriate when explaining my toddlers behaviour).

I’ve learnt the true meaning of unconditional love.

I’ve learnt that when in a hurry a nappy will need to be changed, because babies don’t care for being on time & schedules.

I’ve learnt that you never stop growing up.

I’ve learnt that raising my voice at Orli does not help. At all. I’ve learnt this pisses me off.

I’ve learnt that even as a parent myself, what my parents think still impact some of my decisions.

I’ve learnt that chocolate doesn’t help, but that is also helps.

I’ve learnt that there is no shame in having a Pospartum (postnatal) mood disorder. I didn’t ask for it nor choose to have it.

I’ve learnt that if it’s not on Google it doesn’t exist.

I’ve learnt that you need to work on your marriage. Complacency is the number one reason that most couples split up.

I’ve learnt that patience doesn’t come easily to me.

I’ve learnt that having a nap is the new happy hour.

I’ve learnt that mutual respect is important in every relationship. If it’s not there, you may as well not be there either.

I’ve learnt that the words ‘I love you mummy’ makes my heart explode. Each & every time.

I’ve learnt that Cancer, mental illnesses etc do not discriminate.

I’ve learnt to use the word ‘regret’ instead of ‘guilty’ when talking about my PMD.

I’ve learnt that mess & clutter make me anxious.

I’ve learnt that writing for me is healing & cathartic. Thanks for allowing me to share my words with you all too.

I’ve learnt that forgiveness is bloody hard, but important for your soul & overall happiness.

I’ve learnt not to judge other parents. I don’t live with them, I don’t know the reasons for doing the things they do & it comes down to mutual respect.

I’ve learnt that the TV keeps my kids entertained & I’m more than ok with it.

I’ve learnt that you don’t need to have met people in real life to have long lasting & meaningful relationships.

I’ve learnt that it takes longer for others to learn.

I’ve learnt that my babies have never cared for the baby books saying what they ‘should’ be doing. They can’t read. They do what they want, when they want.

I’ve learnt when to take the higher moral ground.

I’ve learnt that cooking isn’t hard, it just requires time & motivation. I’m lacking in both.

I’ve learnt that self-care is imperative to your overall happiness & crucial to in order to be available to your kids. I need to learn how to do it.

I’ve learnt I learn something new every day.

I’ve learnt that you need to speak up when it comes to your kids health & happiness.

I’ve learnt how to go to the toilet without having kids in there with me. It’s not always successful.

I’ve learnt to enjoy the moment.

I’ve learnt that all families have their shit.

I’ve learnt that you need to be organised when you have kids.

I’ve learnt that NOTHING can prepare you for being a first time mum.

I’ve learnt that masks cover pain, it doesn’t get rid of it.

I’ve learnt that toddlers can frustrate the hell out of you.

I’ve learnt that friends are to be cherished.

I’ve learnt that no one can clean our home as well as me.

I’ve learnt to give myself permission for having a bad day & not to feel guilty about it.

I’ve learnt never to take kindness for granted.

I’ve learnt that it takes a long time to heal.

I’ve learnt that I’ll never stop learning.


What have you learnt?