"In 2013 our first baby, Findlay, was born sleeping when I was 21 weeks and 5 days pregnant. We were very lucky to be supported by local charities and received various mementos, including a memory box and Findlay's hand and footprints which mean the world to us.
We never learned about Aching Arms until I was advised of the charity by another bereaved parent on a baby loss forum. Leaving hospital without our baby was devastating, our arms were literally aching under the emptiness of being without our precious baby and it was a lonely and isolating experience. I truly believe had I had a beautiful wee bear to cuddle, it would have made that heart-breaking journey slightly less painful.
I received a bear in memory of Charlotte Grace, donated by her loving family to remind me that I am not alone. This bear, along with my other mementos of Findlay, are my most prized possessions. We have since donated many bears in memory of Findlay. Hearing from a family who has received a bear always brings mixed emotions. Firstly a deep sadness that they are in the situation to have received a bear and pride that Findlay's memory lives on and brings a tiny bit of comfort to families during an extremely difficult time.
I am honoured to be a volunteer with Aching Arms. My role is to prepare bears for hospitals in the west of Scotland. I write the names of the baby's that each bear has been lovingly donated in memory of, attach each one to a beautiful bear before giving each one a cuddle, ready to send them on their way to the hospitals to provide comfort when needed.
It is my dream to ensure Aching Arms bears are available in my local hospitals in NHS Lothian to provide additional comfort to families alongside the support already provided by local charities.
Aching Arms, alongside other baby loss charities, have played a huge part in my grief journey and every day I am grateful for the support and comfort I have received. "
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