Xavier Imrie

Image created by Teagan Ryatt @teaganryattdesigns

About Xavier

I remember very clearly the moment I told my husband I was pregnant with our first baby. I remember exactly where I was standing on a city street, outside the doctor's surgery. I called him to say the result was positive, and his response was, “Oh my god. We’re pregnant?” WE’RE pregnant! It might sound like a small thing, but the meaning I made from his choice of language, is that he’s in this with me. We’re in this pregnancy together.

And boy was that togetherness needed just 6 ½ months down the track, when we found ourselves in a hospital room hearing those heart crushing words – “I’m sorry. There’s no heartbeat”.

Our son, Xavier Rocket was stillborn on 31st January 2015. The moment he arrived, he was placed on my chest, just as any living baby would be. He was warm to hold, and sweet to smell. His eyes were gently closed, and he was gorgeous. But he was gone. Even so, my husband and I continued to shower him with love, cuddles and kisses. We examined every inch of his little face with pride and devastation. We took family photos and embraced the short time we had together.

We held a small funeral for Xavier on a Monday, and he was buried in the children’s garden of the cemetery, resting between two other baby boys. The funeral was incredibly special, and I felt such mama pride that we’d given Xavier the send-off that reflected his beautiful little life.


And this is what Xavier has taught me. That even in the depths of grief, I can still feel pride and love. Even in feelings of self-blame and anger, I can hold self-compassion. Even when I ask, “Why me? Why him?” I can still carry peace.

If Xavier had somehow come to me before I was pregnant with him, and told me that he could only stay for a very short time, and asked if I would be his mum anyway? My answer would be yes. Every time.

Yes, stillbirth is sad. It's painful. It's scary. But Xavier isn’t ‘stillbirth’. He is my son. He is love. And he is the brightest guiding light in my life. His light makes me a better mum to my living children. A better wife (I think...ask Wade). And I will continue to share that light with the world.

  • Pregnant with Xavier - Jan 2015

    Pregnant with Xavier - Jan 2015

    This is the last photo taken of me whilst pregnant with Xavier. It was the week before he died. At the time, I didn't like how I looked in this photo. The only thing I see in this picture now is the beauty of my time with my son.

  • Xavier's Birth - 31st Jan 2015

    Xavier's Birth - 31st Jan 2015

    This is my husband and I holding Xavier on the day he was born. In this picture I see so much pain but much more love. The love is always bigger than the pain.

  • Xavier Rocket Imrie - 31st Jan 2015

    Xavier Rocket Imrie - 31st Jan 2015

    Our beautiful boy. Stillborn 31st January 2015 at 2:18pm. Weighing in at 1.14kg. Measuring 40cm in length.

  • Headstone - Feb 2015

    Headstone - Feb 2015

    This is Xavier's resting spot. His headstone reads: "Held your whole life. Xavier Rocket Imrie. 31st January 2015. You made our world a better place. Forever in our hearts. Love Mum and Dad" The hand and foot prints are Xavier's actual prints taken on the day he was born. We keep his toy collection updated and he has solar powered night lamps so he's never in the dark.

  • Baby Blue Manicure - Feb 2015

    Baby Blue Manicure - Feb 2015

    For Xavier's funeral, all the ladies had a baby blue manicure to honour our little boy. Whenever I need a little lift, I get a baby blue manicure, because it helps me feel close to Xavier.

  • Trip to Cairns - Feb 2015

    Trip to Cairns - Feb 2015

    My husband and I took off to Cairns for a week after Xavier's funeral. I think we were trying to escape the pain, but it came along with us. We're smiling for the camera but our hearts were broken. One night on this trip, we went out for dinner and sat there the whole time in stunned silence. There really was nothing to say in that moment.

  • Thankyou card - Mar 2015

    Thankyou card - Mar 2015

    I made thankyou cards to send out because I wanted to be like every other mum who gets to do things like this for their baby.

  • Christmas Bauble - Dec 2015

    Christmas Bauble - Dec 2015

    Just a little something for our tree to ensure Xavier was visible for our first Christmas without him. And for all the Christmases to follow.

  • Balloon Release - Jan 2016

    Balloon Release - Jan 2016

    We had a balloon release at Xavier's funeral, and it was the first of many to come. We did it again for his first birthday, and my husband's family released balloons to acknowledge Xavier's second Christmas.

  • Xave's 1st Birthday Cake - Jan 2016

    Xave's 1st Birthday Cake - Jan 2016

    A friend sent me a photo of an amazing three tiered rocket-theme cake. This was our attempt at replicating it! Xavier's little cousins helped decorate and his daddy made the rocket ship for the top. We had a little family party to celebrate our boy. It was also nice to acknowledge that we'd made it through our toughest year ever.

  • 1st Birthday Balloon - Jan 2016

    1st Birthday Balloon - Jan 2016

    After Xavier died I often saw families at our local shopping centre with big bunches of birthday balloons for their children. It was so painful for me to watch their excited faces. I didn't want to miss out, so for Xavier's 1st birthday we got him the biggest number one balloon we could find!

  • Advance copy of 'You Could Have Been' - Dec 2017

    Advance copy of 'You Could Have Been' - Dec 2017

    This is the book I wrote to my little boy, and to all the babies and children whose lives end far too soon. It is my heart, my love and my dreams. Publishing this has been a dream come true.

Winter Bear - Coby Grant

I knew you before I knew your name
I loved you before I saw your face
I longed for you for all of that time
And I held your heart in mine
I kissed you a hundred million times
I tasted the tears that I cried
I held you, my beautiful child
And I'll keep your heart in mine

CHORUS: I love you to the moon and back, my little Winter Bear
I know you know how much that is 'cause you're already there
And I never knew a love like this could ever possibly exist
I love you to the moon and back as long as I live

I see you in all of the stars
Shine brightly right into our hearts
I look at the night sky above
And wonder, can you feel my love?

I love you to the moon and back, Winter Bear
I knew you before I knew your name
I loved you before I saw your face
I longed for you for all of that time
And I'll keep your heart in mine


Ann-Maree Imrie - You Could Have Been

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