Friday, 23 March 2012
22:44 | Posted by Caz | Edit Post
I've been sat watching BBC1 Sport Relief. I recognise myself in those bereft heartbroken parents, I know their pain, I recognise the awful broken sound coming out of their bodies as the realisation their child has died sinks in. I know what it is like to hold and bury your dead child. I know what it feels like when all hope is gone.
Charity drives like this in aid of third world countries are necessary and worthwhile. The disparity of wealth between here and there is a disgrace. Sport Relief reminds us how fortunate we are with the luxury we live in, fortunate because we were born here and not there. We cannot imagine our children working in rubbish heaps, or drinking dirty water, or being exposed to raw sewage and then associated disease and chronic diarrhoea killing them.
But here comes my but.
There are many many parents here in the UK who are bereaved. I am one of those parents. Forgotten parents it seems. So John Bishop, I'm pleased you can't imagine it. I wouldn't want you to. But I can. I can imagine taking my child home from hospital and burying them, because that is exactly what I had to do. My daughter died, I buried her.
So while John Bishop can confidently say that the thought his boys wouldn't survive has ever crossed his mind, there are plenty of parents right here in the UK who have thought it, parents who've lost their children to death. Parents who are terrified their remaining children may be taken too. Death colours the lives of so many unnoticed parents here.
We as a country as so focussed on children dying in the third world that the country seems to forget many thousands of children die here in the UK every single day too. As somebody on my twitter said, we can talk about baby and child death elsewhere but it is not acceptable to do so here. We are comfortable campaigning against children dying in other countries but here baby and Child death remains a taboo.
That cannot be right can it?
Hushed hushed; it doesn't really happen. We don't like to think that British children can die. It doesn't happen here.
But it does.
Tonight on BBC1 celebrities are crying and feeling the rage for the plight of these babies, children and families in the third world, and rightly so. BBC1 isn't easy viewing tonight. We should want to change what happens in these countries less fortunate than ours.
I know the statistics of infant mortality here and there differ greatly. I know it is less likely to happen here, but that doesn't make the children who die here any less worthy of campaigning for change. Doesn't make the grieving parents any less worthy over here. The parents you are watching grieve on the TV tonight? We've looked like that. Many other parents here have looked like that. Our grief is just as huge as theirs, theirs as huge as ours. We have felt the same. We continue to feel the same.
I cannot help but wonder where the same rage and tears are for the babies and children that die here every day? Why do our own babies go unnoticed? Why isn't there a national, celebrity endorsed fundraiser for change here too?
Baby and child death is preventable out there. It is also preventable here.
Not one cause is greater than the other. All baby and child death matters greatly, no matter what country or circumstances it is happening in. So lets take a look closer to home too and bring our own death toll down.
- After Anabelle - Raising Rainbows. I'm Caz, Mummy to beautiful angel Belle and my wonderful rainbow boys, Xander, Zachy and Luc. Wife to Jon. Twitter @cazem Instagram @cazzyem
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