FOR PREGNANCY + INFANT LOSS
Hi there! I am Melissa Sulley (she/her), B.A. Psych + B.Ed.
As a Grief Coach, Educator, and Pregnancy Loss Doula, I offer one-on-one grief support with a focus on Pregnancy & Infant Loss. This includes, but is not limited to, miscarriage, stillbirth, neonatal death, termination for medical reasons, and abortion.
I also partner with the Pregnancy & Infant Loss Support Centre (PILSC) based out of Calgary, Alberta to bring free peer support groups to SW Ontario.
I am the mother of two children earth-side (Ezekiel and Eliyanah) and seven children waiting for me in the stars. My first experience with pregnancy loss was in 2015 when I lost my son Josiah at 20 weeks. After Josiah, I lost three more babies within the second trimester, and three within the first trimester.
Navigating pregnancy loss has been one of the most difficult seasons of my life. I know first-hand how isolating it can be piecing your life back together after such a devastating loss.
As I work with numerous individuals and groups, I am often asked, "How do you move through this? How do you incorporate this grief into your everyday life?" I am passionate about sharing my personal journey of grief and the tools I've learned along the way to empower you to navigate through the difficult waters of loss.
1:1 GRIEF SUPPORT
Why Work With Me 1:1?
Experiencing a miscarriage, termination, still-birth, or infant loss can be one of the most difficult experiences you will ever walk through - but you do not have to walk through it alone. As a Grief Coach and Pregnancy & Infant Loss Doula (candidate), I can support and empower you through a current loss or life after loss.
1:1 Grief Support is for you if you...
- experienced a miscarriage, termination, still-birth or infant loss
- are looking for ways to honour your baby
- are feeling stuck in your grief and are looking for guidance
- need help visualizing your future and identifying obstacles to move forward
- are currently trying to conceive after loss, are pregnant after loss, or just welcomed a baby after loss
- are struggling with secondary losses such as loss of faith, relationships, or identity
- need to create and communicate healthy boundaries
- simply need someone to hear your story and validate your feelings
What to Expect with 1:1 Grief Support
I offer either individual 60-minute support sessions or 6 weeks of comprehensive support (see details below). Our sessions are laid-back in a relaxed, non-judgemental setting via Zoom (for now). Consider it like pouring a cup of coffee and pulling up a chair with an old friend who "gets it." Our discussions will be client-led, based around your grieving needs as I gently guide you to explore and express your grief in a variety of ways.
INDIVIDUAL SUPPORT SESSION
- One 60-minute support session via Zoom
- Opportunity to share your story, be seen and heard
- Work together to identify where you currently feel stuck
- Discuss practical steps to move forward through your grief
- Detailed follow-up email with resources and tools to move forward
6-WEEK SUPPORT PACKAGE
- Weekly 60-minute Zoom calls + 24/7 text/voice support
- Comprehensive sessions tailored towards your grief needs
- Explore in-depth grief tools and coping strategies
- Connect with me 24/7 between sessions via text/voice support
- Identify and work through grief triggers as they arise throughout the week rather than waiting until our next session
LOSS DOULA SUPPORT
Pregnancy & Infant Loss Doula Support is for you if you...
- are currently experiencing a miscarriage, termination, or stillbirth
- just learned your baby no longer has a heartbeat
- received news of a devastating diagnosis
- have decided to terminate a pregnancy for medical or personal reasons
I can work alongside you and your partner to provide information or resources regarding what to expect during a miscarriage or termination along with physical and emotional support. Support is offered in person or virtually.
GROUP GRIEF SUPPORT
Peer Support Groups
We are partnering with the Pregnancy & Infant Loss Centre (PILSC) to bring specialized peer support groups to SW Ontario. These are free peer support groups for every stage of the loss journey. The PILSC groups are designed so that you can access what resonates most for you in this current season of your life. What resonates now may change as your journey does. No matter where you are on the loss journey, there is a group support option for you.
Events + Workshops
Navigating pregnancy and infant loss can be extremely isolating. We want to provide a safe space for you to connect with others who just get it, who understand the pain and joy associated with life after loss. Our events + workshops are light-hearted in nature. We may drop a few curse words, cry, and then laugh till our bellies hurt. If this sounds like your jam, come join us!
Right now, due to COVID-19, all in person events and workshops are postponed until further notice.
In addition to my personal experience with recurrent pregnancy loss, secondary losses, pregnancy after loss, and parenting after loss, I hold the following credentials:
- B.A. Psychology and Bachelor of Education from Western University
- Certified Pregnancy & Infant Loss Doula (in training)
- ILCT Grief Coaching Course
- Grief Counselling & Support Course
- Bereavement Support Groups: Advanced Facilitator Training Certificate
I have also spoken at community events about navigating life after loss, pregnancy after loss, and how to support others through loss. I have facilitated multiple peer support groups, and am an avid reader of all things grief-related. I am constantly learning, growing and adding new coping and healing tools to my tool-belt as a Grief Support, Educator and Pregnancy & Infant Loss Doula.
*Please note that I am not a licensed mental health practitioner or medical professional.