Something no parent wants to face
I will never forget the day I was on Facebook and a post popped up that stopped me in my stride. It didn’t make sense and set my head in motion. I saw another mum was online so messaged her asking about the post I had read. The worse news I ever imagined confirmed I felt numb! I heard someone say, grief isn’t a life sentence, it’s a life passage. It’s the one common human experience we all have at one time or another. But, at this moment in time – I didn’t expect it to be the death of a child. Without warning, life changed for my family. In particular, for my eldest daughter. Her friend, life for Will had sadly ended. My mind focussed on my daughter, but then thoughts of Les, Will’s mum. I couldn’t even start to imagine what she was going through. It’s feared by all parents and an unimaginable loss. I needed to reach out to her mum to mum. I knew I needed to created some precious memories for beloved #willdoes
Working with Douch Family Funeral Directors in Swanage
In the past, I had created a pawprint charm of her loving dog. Creating a fingerprint charm of her son was the least I could do. We communicated and it became clear Les wanted me to do more than this. I liaised with the hosptial and heard that Wil had been moved and I wouldn’t be able to see him for at least two weeks. In my profession, time is of the essence and I will not lie – I did have sleepless nights hoping that the body would be ok. Two weeks on, I received a call from the Douch Family Funeral Directors in Swanage. I needed to visit soon, but at the same time, I knew Les hadn’t seen her son. Through a close friend we managed to organise a day and time that worked for us all. So my journey beg
My journey creating precious memories for beloved #Willdoes
Having done this for 16 years now, this type of casting is never easy! The pressure is phenomenal and at the same time, in the back of my mind I kept thinking – what do I say? My daughter is still here and there are no words. I had to use all my strength to remain focussed when I met with Les and it is a time I will never forget. A mum, broken, thanking me for doing this for her. I won’t go in to detail as the process and what happened is personal. What I will say is that using all her strength Les did it. The outcome is something she can hold on to over the years to come. What I have created will never replace her son, but if it offers 1% of comfort it was worth it for me. Again, as hard as it is to do my job, my ultimate goal is to ensure my client acheives the best outcome. The original casts are in plaster. Yet, this material is fragile and so bronze copies were also created too.
I will hold his Hand Forever
23rd June 2020, a date I will never forget. I met Les today to give her the bronze casts. They are now home and she will be able to “will hold his hand forever”.
So what now, after creating Precious Memories for beloved #Willdoes?
This blog post is not to promote what I do. But, over the years clients have said to me it is important they know of this valuable service. For me, life does go on, but I want to tell you what has happened since the death of Will.
#Willdoes Registered Charity Number 1187099
No child dies without a legacy and a purpose for those that are left behind. I believe that Les has taken this on board. Since the loss of Will, she has set up the charity called #willdoes. The aim is to help young people who may be finding life tough, struggling to cope with daily life. #Willdoes is dedicated to the memory of William Paddy. He was a sporty, charismatic child with a cheeky smile who grew up near Swanage, Dorset. He enjoyed horse riding, snow boarding, rugby and tennis. A sensitive and empathetic kid, Will loved animals and being surrounded by them. His life ended early at the age of 14 years. Yet, his energy lives on through those who knew him and in his charity, #Willdoes.
Helping Young People achieve Wellbeing
Mission Statement of #Willdoes
To promote any charitable purpose; (including the promotion of:-
- physical health,
- mental health and
- social inclusion).
To contribute financially to charitable projects. For the benefit of young people in Dorset and the surrounding areas. Introducing young people to sports and other activities. To help them connect and engage, rather than retreat to more insular gaming. To develop coping mechanisms to help manage anxiety and emotions. Increase self-awareness, developing trust and relationships.
How can you support the charity?
In a short space of time the charity has the following ambassadors :-
- SAS star Jason Fox,
- Mrs Sandra Rednapp and
- International Eventer, Holly Woodhead.
Please show your support too.
Join them at their next event. Click here to see a list of their upcoming events.