Finding comfort after a miscarriage, still birth, or baby loss is difficult. Of course, it’s difficult for the obvious reason that you’ve experienced the loss of a baby, but it can sometimes be more complicated than that. Even though you’ve experienced loss, you might not have anything to “show” for that loss. And in our society’s abortion culture, babies are sometimes not seen as “alive” until long after they’re born.
But, let me acknowledge your pain and your loss and your grief. You absolutely did lose a baby. A baby who you might have already started planning a future for, a child you were looking forward to loving and nurturing. And, even if you were “barely pregnant,” or if you didn’t tell anyone about your pregnancy before (or after) the passing of your baby, your grief is real. Your loss is real. Your pain is real.
Because each mother is different and each circumstance is different, it might be hard to pinpoint exactly how you’ll need to grieve and process this loss. Below are some suggestions to help you.
- Find a pretty box for things that you had accumulated during your pregnancy.
I have one where I placed the ultrasound pictures that I had, the reminder card of my final obstetrician appointment, and the bracelets that I wore in the emergency room just before I heard the news. This box is still with me, but I’ve heard of some mothers burying theirs.
- Give your baby a name.
Naming our little one allowed my husband and me to grieve and to be able to call our baby by name.
- Find a cathartic outlet. Start journaling. Write poetry. Write a blog post. Write a note to, or a prayer about, your baby and your loss. Keep a photo album or a scrapbook.
- Plant a tree or some flowers in honor of your little one.
- If you can, hold a funeral for your little one. This can be private or with family and friends.
- Name a star after your baby.
- Donate to a charity in memory (a woman’s resource center, a Pro-life center, or some other charity that is important to you, especially if it benefits babies or children.)
- Feel free to say “No” to outside activities for a time. Especially if these activities include baby showers or children’s birthday parties.
- Also feel free to say “No” to any extras of life that tend to swirl around you while you feel stuck in sadness.
- Let friends and family care for you. Let them stop by. Eat their casseroles. Let them drag you to the movies. Let them hear your baby’s story.
- If you can, go on a couple’s retreat where you and your husband can process your grief together.
- Also, there is NO shame in needing outside help. Please speak to a therapist if you need to. They’re there to help.
I hope that these ideas are a help and encouragement to you. Please don’t forget that grieving is a very personal process; grieve how you need to.
Many hugs and much love to you, dear friend.
Charlotte and Renee