IN THE two-and-half-years since Jarrad McVeigh lost his baby daughter to a heart condition, it's been too hard for the Sydney Swans co-captain to share his experience to guide others.
Telling and retelling the heartbreaking story of how he and wife Clementine lost their daughter, Luella, who was born with serious heart conditions, took too much of a personal toll.
But as the Swans and North Melbourne prepare to play for the HeartKids Cup on Sunday, McVeigh says he is ready to have an active role raising awareness of childhood heart disease. 
"For me personally it was almost too hard to do things, but now I'm feeling like I can do that type of stuff and I want to get more involved," McVeigh said.  
"It's taken a bit of time, and to keep telling the story does take quite a toll. But now I'm more able to do that.
"Six babies every day are born with a heart condition and four of those don't make it every week.
"Spreading that awareness is something I want to be a part of."
The HeartKids Cup was launched in 2012 by McVeigh and North Melbourne great Glenn Archer, who has also been personally affected by childhood heart disease.
The Kangaroos approached McVeigh and the Swans, with Archer’s daughter Madison overcoming a life threatening heart condition. 
"The significance of playing for the Heartkids Cup is big for me personally," McVeigh said.
"Our club and North Melbourne are trying to spread the awareness of the HeartKids and try and raise some money and donate some money towards that cause.
"It's not something you can see on children or people.
"They'll have a scar underneath their shirt or jumper, so it's not something visible and it's not out there as much as other stuff."
McVeigh said the Swans had remained "an incredible source of help" for his family, who welcomed baby daughter Lolita-Luella in July 2012. 
"Other than your family and your wife, it's probably the next group of people you look to," he said of the club.   
"For me and my family they've been unbelievable and they continue to be helpful to me.
"You can never repay that."