Friday, September 17, 2010

National Pregnancy Loss and Remembrance Day

As many of you know October 15th, National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day, is coming up and there is a lot going on in support of it. Head over to I Am The Face to find out how you can help spread the word about this great cause.

The hospital where Harper was born is having a memorial ceremony for all of the families who have lost babies on October 15th. I am super excited about getting the opportunity to go to this event that will be honoring the life of my daughter. Being among people who will be celebrating little lives of their own and who will understand just how important that is to do so, will be truly amazing. I know it will be a wonderful, yet tearful, night.

I have been in contact with the hospital's bereavement coordinator and am going to be working with her to distribute Faces of Loss informational post cards in our area. In the process of doing this, I was asked to attend an additional private ceremony to thank all of the wonderful people who donate memory boxes to our hospital. She told me that they were looking for guest speakers to express their gratitude for these boxes and asked if I would be interested. How could I say no? Without Harper's memory box I would have nothing. All of my tangible memories of her birth and short life are in that little box. Everything from her photos, her sweet smocked dress, her receiving blankets, her hand & foot prints and a lock of her beautiful red hair. Even though I am very apprehensive about speaking in public about the death of my daughter and what that box has meant to me, through tears, I am going to do it.

My heart breaks when I think that all of the memories that I will ever have of my baby girl have already been made. Even worse, that every last one of them fits into a small box. The day I was discharged from the hospital I was rolled down those long, quiet, stark hallways with nothing more than a cardboard box in my arms, a tear streaked face and a shattered heart. I felt so incredibly helpless. It felt so wrong to be leaving the hospital without my daughter and only with that damned box. I kept thinking how could this happen? I was screaming on the inside. THIS MUST BE SOME KIND OF MISTAKE! I JUST WANT MY DAUGHTER BACK! I hated that box and even more, I hated the reason for it. I will always hate the reason, it means that my Harper is dead and she is never coming back. It means that I will never hold her again or kiss her again, at least not in this life. Of course, I no longer hate my memory box. It has become my most prized possession. It is all I have left of her life and I will always cherish it.


Jessica said...

That is so very brave of you to speak at the event! I'm sure you will do a wonderful job! Those of us who can speak need to do so for those who cannot :) (((hugs)))

rebecca said...

That is wonderful you're speaking at the event and don't worry about the emotion that will come at that time, know that the honesty of what you say will drive home to those volunteers what a truly incredible gift they give to families in those situations. I remember feeling exactly as you described when I was being wheeled out of the hospital, clasping to that box but at the same time wanting to throw it and scream. Thinking of you & praying for strength and courage as you share your story...much love my friend.

Jennifer said...

What a great opportunity, not just to thank the volunteers for their loving gifts, but also to talk about your little Harper. I'm sure her story will touch their hearts and give them inspiration to continue their work and to let them know how valuable it is for newly-bereaved parents. So go for it! :) Like you, Kai's memory box is also one of my most cherished possessions. I hope you have a nice weekend.

Melissa said...

I am so glad you'll have that ceremony and that you'll get a chance to do something positive by speaking to the volunteers. Remember, that although our children are gone and the memories that we dreamed creating with them are gone we still have the opportunity to create memories of their life. It is just in a very different way than we'd imagined it would be, but I hope one day in Heaven our children will be able to share those memories with us. I think by doing these types of things...walks, ceremonies, our blogs...we are creating memories of our children.

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