Grieving the Loss of a Baby - Infant Loss Awareness Month
This month is for every mama with an empty womb who so badly wanted that sweet baby and it’s for every mama with two in her arms who always wants to whisper, “there are three.”⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
It’s for every mama who never got to hold her baby, and it’s for every mama who did get to hold her baby, but nowhere near long enough.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
It’s for every mama who lost a baby before she bought that first set of maternity clothes and it’s for every mama who lost a baby when everyone could see she was expecting.
It’s for every mama who is limping through today and it’s for every mama who has found hope amidst her heartbreak.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
It’s for every mama who has lived any of the millions of ways that a motherhood story can be filled with heartbreak. But no matter how our motherhood losses might differ, one thing remains the same —the love of a mama never fades.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month and October 15th is the International Wave of Light. To honor your little ones, we have put together a few ideas that you can do at home to specifically remember your children. These ideas are ones that can be done for years to come, as you grieve the loss of your child and the loss of the shared future you dreamed of with them.
Celebrate their Memory with an Activity
After you have lost a little one, remembrance days might feel so daunting. I think it’s helpful to remember that there is no “wrong or right” way to honor Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, but it can feel helpful to create rituals that help you to acknowledge and honor your loss. And even though each year might be different than the last, it can feel so therapeutic to create a tradition to remember them during October and on October 15th.
I personally planted a lavender garden in my apartment windowsill after our miscarriage. Even though we didn’t have any outdoor space at the time, it was healing for me to go through the process of digging in some dirt and creating a little safe space for myself in our downtown apartment. I have seen other moms find peace in hosting balloon releases, creating peace flags, or creating crafts or projects for their home in their memory.
Light a candle in their honor
On October 15th at 7pm in your local timezones, parents, friends, and families all across the world light a candle in honor of their little ones as part of the International Wave of Light. This yearly tradition can feel so healing for a parent who has lost a child. Knowing you are not alone can make a huge difference. This year, we are giving away 15 of our Light in Dark Places candles throughout the month of October for you to light in honor of your little ones. Head to our social media page here to be sure and enter.
If you need ideas of how to support a loved one who is grieving the loss of their baby, we offer beautiful commemorative memorial candles that can be lit in their honor.
Light in Dark Places candle: Perfect for someone who has experienced miscarriage (absolutely what I would have loved after my miscarriage)
Shining Bright Birthday Candle: So sweet for a birthday, and can be personalized
All of Me Misses All of You Candle: The message on this candle could not be more perfect for a bereaved parent
Let Their Light Shine Luminary: Love how this candle can be handwritten with their name or their year
Commemorative Holiday Candle can be customized with your little one’s name
Connect with an online community for support
Feeling isolated and alone after pregnancy or infant loss is SO normal,. Not at all that it’s ok, but it’s something that so many experience. I love how vibrant the online community of support has become in the last few years, so if you are struggling with isolation, I want to encourage you to find an online group to support you! There are so many great options out there. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re struggling to find one, and I’ll help guide you in the right direction!
Encourage Acts of Kindness in their Memory
After losing a child, many parents choose to ask their friends and family to participate in random acts of kindness in their child’s memory. Whether that is donating to a favorite charity, buying lunch for the person in line behind you, volunteering at a local soup kitchen, or leaving gift cards out for a random passerby (just to name a few ideas), acts of kindness can feel so meaningful and beautiful.
Be Gentle with for Yourself
I’m ending on this one, because Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month can feel really, really heavy. So no matter how you best find rest, I want to encourage you in that. After my own miscarriage I struggled to give myself the space and time that I needed, and I would absolutely go back and change that if I could. Whatever it looks like for you, whether it is journaling, taking a walk, sleeping in, going to counseling, having wine with a good friend, or baking a favorite dessert, do what you need to care for your own soul and spirit this month. You, my sweet friend are so, so worth it.
We will be hosting a series of giveaways in honor of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month, so stay tuned to our website, email list, and Instagram account. We love you all and are so grateful for the opportunity to love on all you beautiful mamas!