Samantha Cameron: My Christian Faith Grounded Me After My Son Died
Samantha Cameron has spoken movingly how her Christian faith sustained her after their eldest son Ivan died aged six.
The fashion entrepreneur and wife of former Prime Minister David Cameron is launching her own clothing range.
In an interview with The Times she described of Ivan's premature death in 2009, the year before her husband became Prime Minister, made everything else 'irrelevant' and 'meaningless'.
She said: 'Ive dying is such a massive thing that everything else is irrelevant. It just overshadows everything. What goes on in the outside world becomes meaningless.'
'Like anyone else in my situation, I just kept going. You have to deal with it, because you have no choice.'
But her faith helped her get through it.
'Being a New Testament Christian I have found very grounding,' she said. 'It helped to think I had been given Ivan as a gift to look after.'
The emotional interview gives the first insight into Mrs Cameron's life in Downing Street and how her son's death affected their family.
'For the whole time Ive was alive, you were always dealing with life or death situations, but it doesn't prepare you for when you are actually faced with it. When it happens, it is still a huge shock. From the moment he is born you are living in a situation that is quite surreal and difficult to deal with. It is intense every day, in and out of hospitals. So you become quite used to dealing with situations week after week that are totally different from [those experienced by] anyone else.'
She said that caring for Ivan, who was heavily disabled with a rare form of epilepsy and cerebral palsy, was a full time job.
'It is a different, parallel universe. In a way, that prepared me for Dave being prime minister, because I was used to living and operating in a way that's not normal. We managed to talk to each other about his death, but we also tried to keep a routine going so we didn't fall apart completely, but then I realised I needed time out to spend with the other children. I didn't want to forget about him. I was incapable emotionally of talking about him, but I felt awful being in a situation where I couldn't talk about it. It is one reason why I am quite private; I can't talk about it, but I can't not talk about it. I still have four children and I think about him the whole time. It's all so complex – nothing is ever black and white. There were so many emotions and that's why grief is so hard.'