October is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month.
Declared by President Regan in 1988, National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month was set aside to both honor parents who have experienced a miscarriage, stillbirth or infant loss and to spread greater awareness of the affects these particular issues have on individuals, families and communities.
There are many events across the nation this month, many of them on our around October 15th, International Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day. In our community, Right to Life and Heartline Pregnancy Center are sponsoring a Walk For Life on October 13th. I’m not sure if the organizers are aware of the significance of this month or the proximity of the date, but I am encouraged by the fact of the event.
Honestly, I’m not participating in any events in October, not because I have a problem with them or because I feel too emotionally weak or raw to do so. Its more because the things I’d like to do this month I’m not yet prepared for. One project I’m working on we’ve decided to slow down a bit so we can do it right. I have another project I’m working that I’m not ready to go public with just yet. It certainly will be up and running this time next year, although my goal for now is in the spring, on a day that I’ve informally labeled “Williamsday” – March 9.
In the meantime, I encourage you to seek out ways to remember the families who have suffered the loss of a child through miscarriage, stillbirth or infant death. This month I’m also remembering those children killed by abortion. Here are some of the ways I plan on remembering my Little Man, and honoring the little ones of others:
~ I’ll be lighting a candle on October 15th. I’m not going to make a big deal or ceremony out of it, I’m just going to have one flickering away on my desk and at home, as a reminder.
~ I’m meeting with some women in my church who have a special heart for babyloss parents, in an effort to put together a support group for this very special group of people. This will require me to spend some time brainstorming and planning on my own.
~ This month I’m reading Elizabeth Elliot’s book Path Through Suffering. This isn’t a babyloss book, but its based on scripture and is already encouraging to me.
~ I will probably make a trip to the cemetery this month. I don’t go often; its depressing and discouraging to me and that is not the place I want to go to remember William or talk to him. But I think this month, like some other important dates on the calendar, will be an important time to be there.
~ In reference to those not-yet-public projects I’m working on: this month I hope to lay some important groundwork this month to get that project going.
What ways are you remembering your little one, or the families you know who have lost little ones?