"There's his heart, but it's not beating. I'm sorry."
Life Without Cameron is a memoir of love and loss. The manuscript for this book received a Certificate of Commendation in the 2009 Young Australian Christian Writer of the Year Awards. If you know someone who has lost a child through stillbirth or miscarriage, this book will help you to understand how you can better care for and love your friend or family member. Truly, you can make a difference by endeavouring to understand their pain and sorrow.
We are planning to start shipping the book in late November. Your pre-order of the book will help us to fund the first print run. Each book will be packaged by hand, and we will send you an email notification once your book has been dispatched. We are happy to ship worldwide. If you have any questions about shipping and returns, please visit our FAQ page.
According to the Stillbirth Foundation Australia, there are 6 stillborn babies every day. In 2012 alone, 1832 babies were stillborn. In 40 percent of cases, the cause of death is unknown. And despite the enormous advances in both technology and medicine, the rate of stillborn babies in Australia has not declined in 2 decades. The Stillbirth Foundation Australia's mission is to significantly reduce the incidence of stillbirth through research, education, and advocacy. For every copy of Life Without Cameron sold, we will donate $2.00 to the Stillbirth Foundation Australia to support ongoing research into the causes of stillbirth and how it can be prevented.
Life Without Cameron
by Rhonda Mason
At twenty-six, Rhonda Mason falls pregnant for the first time—a year after her husband, Rick, begins his studies at Moore Theological College in Sydney. On 15 September 2007, Rhonda and Rick learn that their son, Cameron, has no heartbeat—just two days before Rhonda is due to be induced. She is 41 weeks pregnant. The next day, Rhonda gives birth to Cameron on a beautiful spring afternoon—he weighs 4.5 kg, and he has black hair. He is perfect in every way, but he never opens his eyes.
Life Without Cameron is an honest and raw account of the days and months that follow the stillbirth of Rhonda’s son. While coping with her own devastating grief, Rhonda soon discovers that she must face the added pain caused by the insensitive comments of others and, worse still, the silence of those who choose to keep their distance. She realises that it is up to her to keep Cameron’s memory alive, and when she falls pregnant with her second child, Angus, she learns what it is like to grieve and rejoice at the same time.
In this heart-rending memoir, readers are taken on a rare journey into the lonely world of grieving parents. This is what their grief looks like—it is tangible, it is confronting, and it is relentless. This book will help us all better care for and love those who have lost children.
About the author
A graphic designer by trade, Rhonda Mason is married to Rick, an ordained minister for the Sydney Anglican Diocese in Australia. A week after Cameron's stillbirth, Rhonda began journaling as a way of coping with her grief. She shared her writing online to help their family and friends understand what they were enduring. She named that blog Life Without Cameron. In May 2009, she wrote her first manuscript by the same name, and received a Certificate of Commendation in the 2009 Young Australian Christian Writer of the Year Awards. In December 2010, the Sunday Telegraph Magazine published a two-page article that Rhonda had written about Cameron and stillbirth. Since losing Cameron, Rick and Rhonda have had five more boys: Angus, Peter, James, Edward, and Lewis. Rhonda now writes at The Shoemaker’s Daughter, a personal blog named after her mother. She also runs memory-keeping workshops and teaches graphic design and photo organisation through her business LIFE:CAPTURED.
An excerpt from the preface
"This is a chronicle of our journey as we began our life without our precious firstborn son, Cameron, who died in utero at full term. This is what grief looks like. It is real, and it is tangible. This is what a mother suffers when she loses her child, her baby. Christians are not immune to suffering. It is possible to trust God and still grieve.
Every mother’s journey is different. I am not claiming that my experience is every mother’s experience. I can only tell my story, and my story only.
But perhaps there is something universal to every mother’s suffering when she loses a child. The overwhelming shock, the utter devastation, the immense pain, the bottomless grief, the terrible emptiness, and the inevitable sense of isolation and loneliness from the world—I can only imagine that these must be present in every mother’s journey.
Perhaps our story will be closer to home for those mothers who have lost children in their infancy—when life is cut suddenly and tragically short. When hopes and expectations are dashed and shattered even before they have fully formed. When a childhood is lost forever. I think especially of other mothers whose children died in utero, like Cameron. Mothers who, like me, never got to see their child open his or her eyes, never got to see their child’s first smile or hear their first cry. Mothers who had to give birth, knowing that their child had ceased to live. . . .
It is my hope and prayer that by sharing our story, others might better understand the depth and width of our sadness, our pain, and our mourning. Before losing Cameron, I could not possibly have known or understood what it is like for couples to suffer a tragedy like this. Now that I have been inside the valley, I want to shed light on this journey so that others might also understand—if not entirely, at least partially.
I hope this will help us all better care for and love those who have lost children. Because before we can help, we need to at least try and understand their pain."
- Measures 129mm x 198mm
- 244 pages (excluding the cover)
- Soft cover with a matt laminate finish
- Printed on Envirocare 100% Recycled stock (115gsm)
- Printed and bound by White Laws in Melbourne
- Packaged and wrapped by hand
- $2.00 will be donated to The Stillbirth Foundation of Australia for every copy sold
We will send you an email notification once your book has been dispatched. Worldwide shipping available. If you have any questions about shipping and returns, please visit our FAQ page.