Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month is a great time to remember and memorialize your baby. Here are some tips we share each year at this time, adapted from the book Hope is Like the Sun: Finding Hope and Healing After Miscarriage, Stillbirth, or Infant Death.
There are countless ways to remember and honor your baby. No matter how much time has passed since your miscarriage, it is never too late to memorialize your child.
You can find comfort and healing by incorporating your baby’s memory into your life. Here are some suggestions:
– Create a memory box. Include any mementos you may have from your baby. A positive pregnancy test, a toy, stuffed animal or outfit you bought for the baby (if you do not have one, then buy one). Anything you may have that reminds you of your pregnancy or your baby can be included, even if you just have a few things.
– Make a donation in your baby’s name. Publicly acknowledge your child by making a charitable donation, or give something to a needy child that is the same age your child would have been now. Also consider submitting an article or poem about your baby to a newspaper or magazine.
– Make something for the baby such as a quilt, a painting, a cross stitch, an outfit, a piece of pottery or furniture.
– Buy a piece of jewelry that symbolizes your baby. Your baby’s birthstone, or an engraved necklace with your baby’s name can be good choices.
– Plant a tree or garden in memory of your baby. You may even choose a houseplant or indoor tree. Decorate the tree at special times of the year to remember your baby.
– Add your baby to the family tree. If you named your baby, add him or her permanently to the family by including the baby in your family tree.
– Donate baby items that you may have bought or received to a worthy charity. You may also do this in your baby’s name.
– Have a celebration each year on your baby’s birthday or due date.
– Include your baby in the hospital’s Remembrance Book. Most hospitals have a remembrance book, and even if your baby did not die in a hospital, you can contact the Chaplin at your local hospital.
– Add your baby to the HOPE Canvas. Create a “virtual” square in honor of your baby and add it to the HOPE Canvas. Share it with your friends and family to remember your baby. Find out more information on The HOPE Canvas page.
– Light a candle for the baby every evening until you feel you do not need to anymore. After that, burn it once a month, on Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day, or on special anniversaries.
Remembering your baby is a very personal thing. There is no right or wrong way to honor your child. Taking the time to memorialize your baby will bring you closure and comfort as your move through your grief, and work toward recovery.