‘At my final midwife appointment, I was told that everything was looking fine, but that afternoon, my husband and I had a funny feeling that something wasn’t right. We went to the hospital and were told that Liberty’s heart wasn’t beating. We were absolutely devastated.’
Sophie Daniels is a songwriter, musical educator and singer. She is the founder of Liberty’s Mother, a project seeking to break the silence that surrounds baby loss. When Sophie’s daughter Liberty died in 2011, she turned to song-writing to express her grief.
‘Through song-writing, I was able to understand how I could emotionally survive the loss. Stillbirth forced me to deal with the complex concepts of life and death at the same time. It was impossible to understand. I wrote the song ‘I Can Love You From Here’ just twelve weeks after Liberty was born.'
‘I Can Love You From Here’ explores what it feels like to love a baby who is no longer in your arms. Jeremy Vine of Radio 2 called the song:
“Powerful, passionate and direct (this song) feels so emotionally true.”
It expresses Sophie's limitless amount of love for Liberty. Sophie initially composed the song as a private piece of music for herself, family, close friends and colleagues. However, some years later, when several of her students began to write songs about their own experiences of grief, Sophie decided that it was time to open up and share Liberty’s song publicly. It was immediately clear that the song had the power to connect with people.
‘This song is me speaking directly to Liberty. It is a song that considers what we can do with the love we have for someone we have lost. A new mother is utterly consumed with love and protection. A new mother who has lost her child has nowhere to direct that love. I wrote this song to direct all of my love to Liberty, every day, wherever she may be.’
In 2018, Sophie was asked to play at a ceremony at The Houses of Parliament to mark Baby Loss Awareness Week. The service was attended by parents and MP's who have experience of baby loss. The response she had following that performance prompted Sophie’s decision to record and release the song.
‘When I performed in Westminster, I could feel the energy, strength and unity that it created. The song really resonated with the audience. That’s why I’ve decided to release this EP, to promote emotional unity for all human beings with experience of loss.’
Sophie recently travelled to Nashville where she spent time in the recording studio. She recorded a new EP which includes the song ‘I Can Love You From Here’ and three new tracks. Each song relates to Sophie’s experiences as a mother who has lost a child. Sophie is passionate about starting conversations and is determined to break the silence around baby loss.
‘Baby loss continues to be a taboo subject. This must end. If we talked more openly, less babies would die. Put simply, talking is prevention. I am on a mission to expose this ‘secret club’ and get people talking.’
This October, Sophie will release ‘I Can Love You From Here’ along with her EP, under the artist name ‘Liberty’s Mother’. This is a not for profit music release raising funds to support our work here at Tommy’s.
‘It is important, as the parent of a child who has died, to be able to say and use their name. That is why the project is called ‘Liberty’s Mother’. It is who I am, but something I rarely get to express.’
‘I Can Love You From Here’ will be released on 4th October 2019.
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Tommy’s has received a grant from the UK Government’s Department for Health and Social Care to support the costs of its PregnancyHub information and support services throughout the summer, due to rising demand in the wake of coronavirus.
Although recruitment to some clinical trials had to be paused when coronavirus hit the UK, scientists at Tommy’s Research Centres across the UK are still hard at work, supporting women and families in our specialist clinics and sharing their latest studies with academic journals.
The day before Mother’s Day, and two days before the UK officially went into coronavirus lockdown, Zara Dawson found out she was having a miscarriage. Her third consecutive miscarriage in less than a year, and fourth consecutive loss, after losing her second son Jesse in 2018 to termination for medical reasons.
As research shows half of UK mums are experiencing mental health problems in coronavirus lockdown, we've joined forces with Elvie on #TheBigSqueeze campaign to help Tommy's midwives continue to provide their vital support virtually during the pandemic.