The follow up appointments after my miscarriage were tough. Returning to the clinic where I last held my child in my womb. Watching the Mamas leave their appointments with ultrasounds in their hands. Sitting in the discharge room listening to the excitement in the air of pending nurseries and baby showers. That was my story once too. I swallowed hard and counted the seconds until they were over.
I avoided pregnant women in the aisles at Target. I didn’t go to the restroom at HomeGoods, because I didn’t want to walk through the baby aisle to get there. I can remember being at a standstill in my grief. I felt that if I stopped crying or felt better that it meant that my baby didn’t matter anymore. So, I stayed there for a while. I didn’t know what was appropriate, but I had to figure something out. It wasn’t healthy for me or my husband. Though I could never “move on,” I had figure out a way to move forward. Here is what I came up with.
1. Personalized Jewelry
I had a hard time walking out my front door into the sun. I wasn't ready to put one foot in front of the other, but I knew I had to try. I searched for a while, until I found a tangible item that I could wear to help me take my first step.
I searched high and low for a phrase that would mean something to me. "An angel in heaven" didn't sit right with me theologically. Don't get mad at me. It's okay if that's what you choose or chose to memorialize your baby by. I understand. My baby certainly is "my angel" in as much as my husband is "my baby." But as much as I could identify with that phrase, it just didn't feel right to me personally and theologically. My baby is so much more than the angels. He was created in the image and likeness of God. So I kept searching. And out of thin air I had heard "You'll Be In My Heart" by Phil Collins from the movie Tarzan playing in the background, and I knew what I wanted on my necklace.
"Always in my heart."
For Her// Custom Stamped Necklace
You can find this exact necklace here. It was made by a local artisan named Lindsey who is located here in Athens, GA too! Her shop is called Stamped + Finch. Be sure to check her out.
For Him// Hidden Message Bracelet
My husband wasn’t forgotten in my grief. We checked on each other daily. Not only did I get necklaces with this phrase, but we purchased a personalized bracelet from MBOSS Designs on Etsy for him too. You can find this exact hidden message bracelet here.
2. Home Decor
I hand-lettered a quote by Alfred Tennyson to place in a frame by my ultrasound.
Why would I display something that hurt so much? Well, my baby is a part of my story. As time has passed, my wound has healed though the scar is still ever-present. I am able to look at that frame and know that I am a Mom. My miscarriage didn't take that away from me. This very baby made me a Mom. I can find joy in that today.
I also wanted my future present children to know this part of our story. They have another sibling. They have another person to love. I want the women and men who come into my home to know that my husband and I are available to them should they go through this one day too. Oh, God-forbid. I don't want it to be a secret.
I also found this printable that I fell in love with by Liana Lane Art. I love that it’s a more subtle way of remembering your babies if you are more private by nature. She drew a bouquet of carnations which represent a mother’s love and forget me nots.
You can find this floral printable in her Etsy shop here. It’s an instant download that you can print at home or at any local printer.
3. A DIY Project
It was a very difficult time. I didn't want to be around anyone. I didn't want to take people up on their offers to meet me for a meal somewhere. I needed to do something to keep myself busy. This was especially therapeutic for me as it took me some time to work on this project. This particular project also matched my hand lettered quote above.
I found a tutorial for an Embroidery Hoop Wreath display written by Erin from Cotton Stem, and I took my time and made the display you see above. You can find the tutorial I followed for this project by clicking here. I made it as a memorial to my baby.
These are just a few ways I found that helped me personally. I understand if it takes you a minute to get there. It took me a while to smile without guilt. I felt that if I smiled that I was betraying my baby. I wasn’t okay for a while. I was angry. I was sad. I was hopeless. I was confused. I didn’t know when it was appropriate to say, “I’m okay,” when people asked me how I was doing. So, I do. I completely understand if you aren’t there yet, but when you are ready I hope these ideas can give you a springboard to healing, dear mama.