Never Forget...

October 14, 2016

When I started this project a year ago, I never thought it would have the profound impact that it has.  It grew from 9 ladies to 18.  It  grew into 34 balloons.  34 children that never had the chance to grow up.  34 children that are deeply, deeply missed by their families.  I can't even imagine how this session will grow in the future years, but I hope it does.  I am thankful that I can use this page and platform to raise awareness and give these angels and their mommies a voice.

 

I have to admit.  I'm a little naive.  I have never lost a child and I definitely don't have the right answers, but here is some beautiful insight that they suggested {and I researched} that you can do if someone you know loses a child during pregnancy or afterwards.

 

QUOTES FROM THE LADIES

"I think how others support people who have gone through loss hugely impacts healing. In my case, people who donated in the name of my daughter to charities that either mattered to them or they thought may matter to me was very comforting. Some examples of places people have donated include March of Dimes, The hospital where the baby was born- NICU, planting trees, naming stars ect. That helped me think that my daughter's imprint, even though tiny, is helping others."

 

"Something else that has been helpful is recognizing that holidays and anniversaries are very challenging.  Just short messages such as a "thinking of you" goes a long way. Recognizing that we are mothers, grieving mothers, is very important to me."

 

"I think the other thing is if people truly don't know what to say or how to approach the subject, read up on it. It may sound strange but that means a lot to know that people really care about how to handle the situation. Those cliche phrases are not anything that I wanted to hear... "you can try again" or along those lines. I know you can't change other people, but that awareness would be so helpful."

 

"It's natural to ask a married woman about children.  If they are planning on having children or if they are having more children.   While it's an innocent question, it can be difficult to answer. They might not want children.  They might want children but not be able to conceive.  They might be going through IVF, or have had multiple miscarriages.  They might have had one miscarriage and decided they were done.  They may have had a stillborn child or a child that died after birth.  They might have health issues that prevents pregnancy and the list goes on and on.  Be Sensitive. "

 

DON'T SAY

"You can have another"

"It's God's Will"

 

DO SAY 

"No one can replace your baby, but I hope you have the healthy baby you deserve."

"I'm going to the store, what can I get you."

"I'm coming over tonight, what do you need help with?"...offer specific suggestions

 

"For me it means a lot when people would just mention his name and not forget about him. Some random conversations when they would say that you have three children goes along way. I think my biggest fear is that people would forgot about him, like he never existed, which is why I would make it intentional to always mention him and bring him up. I know he died but he's still our son, a part of our family always and forever. It also means a lot when people remember about his birthday. Our family celebrates his birthday and would do something fun just among us. I would make it a big deal about it with his sisters so they all know that we're doing it because Alexander lived. One last thing, don't ever be afraid to mention his name and talk about him. I promise I won't melt into this bubbly mess and cried in front of you. I don't really cry to begin with. I very much appreciate it when he's remembered. But again, it's different to everyone. Everyone grieves differently, but this is what I'd like them to do to me."

 

Remembrance Ideas

Planting Flowers or a Tree

Organize a Balloon, Butterfly, Dove or Lantern Release

Attend a Support Group with them

Light a Candle {The Remembrance Day is October 15th at 7:00pm}

Pray

Make them dinner or bring over food items you know they like

Take part in remembrance celebrations with them

Give children's books to your local library in the child's name

If they post about their child on social media, comment and like their posts {don't ignore...show support!}

Memory Walks

 

Gift Ideas

Molly Bear or Keepsake Stuffed Animal

Purchase a piece of jewelry with the baby's initial- bracelet, necklace, keychain

Personalized Candle

Personalized Ornament

Donation in the Child's Name

Naming a Star

Plaque or Memory Quote

Flowers or Potted Plant

Send a thoughtful card on the rough holidays, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Date of Loss or Due Date, Christmas...

Picture Frame or Scrapbook

Offer to babysit their current children to give them a night out or break

Handmade Quilt

Stepping Stone

Journal

Books that speak to Infant Loss

 

What else can I do?

Listen, Don't Ignore the Situation, Be Present, Ask Questions and Let them know you are there.  Be Sensitive.  Remember and Acknowledge Tough Dates.  They are moms and dads, even if their babies are in heaven.  Give them space and time to breathe.  Don't underestimate the grieving loss of a brother or sister.  Siblings needs support too.


I hope this helps in some small way.  If you have any additional ideas I can add to this blog, feel free to comment and click on "GRACE" Sessions above to read the 2016 stories.

 

"You were a part of me for a little while.

 I grieve because I'll never see the magic in your smile."

 

 

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My photography is so much more than taking a photograph; it’s about creating memories. I tend to fall in love with my clients and build friendships that last through the years. When I picked up my first camera all those years ago, I never imagined it turning into a career that I love so much.

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