Thursday, July 9, 2015


Stillborn baby
It was my honor to dedicate last night's run to a beautiful boy named Chris, who was born sleeping on January 23, 1988.  Although lightened by the time I got home, it rained all afternoon and I was planning on going out anyway.  I opened the door, walked outside, and the rain stopped.  A few rays of sunshine pushed through the remaining clouds and brought delightful evening light to my run.  I smiled, touched Chris’s stone, and went out into the wilderness with my companion held close to my heart. 

As I entered the forest, the drops of rain still lingered on the flowers and plants that hugged the trail, and there was a light mist dancing above the ground.  The forest felt enchanting and full of life.  Sunbeams peaked through the dense forest and sunlight sparkled on the trees’ glistening leaves.  As I turned a bend, I came across two rabbits in the middle of the path.  I stopped and quietly tiptoed around them. 

The sounds of the birds penetrated through my headphones so I turned off my music to listen.  I heard the most beautiful symphony of birds singing and calling to each other.  They called to each other from one side of the forest to the other, so I heard their music bouncing back and forth above me on the trail.  The birds’ music was spiritual and it was a very loud sense of quiet.  It was so peaceful and quiet, but so loud and alive at the same time.  I am delighted I could share this enchantment with Chris.  

I didn’t encounter anyone else during my run.  It was just Chris and I.  Others probably gave up on the weather, but Chris gave me the encouragement to go outside anyway, which was a beautiful gift to experience this magical forest.  As I was entranced by nature’s symphony, my breath huffed into the air and my feet pounded on the dirt path.  The birds’ songs echo in my ears as I write this and I’m grateful that Chris has reminded me that the world truly is a beautiful and magical place. 
Running to heal
Chris’s mother, Lesley, founded a non-profit organization, ComforTED©, which has an inspiring and compassionate mission to comfort families who have lost a child.  She makes a pair of teddy bears for bereaved families: one to be placed with the baby and one to be kept by the family.  She shares more about her story and ComforTED©’s mission:

“26 years ago in January 1988 I did not have the opportunity to see or hold my son Chris who was stillborn at 29 weeks. No encouragement was given to ‘make memories’ and even his funeral was arranged and carried out by the hospital/council. In hindsight I would have done more, but in the fragile state you are in and if no encouragement is given then you just go with what is deemed as ‘for the best’.

I work for a Funeral Director and in January 2014 I created ComforTED©. He is offered to parents as part of our service to encourage memories to be made. One TED is placed with the baby and the other is kept by the parents with the hope that knowing they hold a keepsake that is also with their child and in time bring will bring some comfort.

A pair of ComforTED© can be obtained with no charge other than the postage - which can be discussed when you make a request via private message on this page. ComforTED© are made personally by me so I can guarantee that there is love stitched into every one.

I am brought to tears by the beautiful and compassionate mission of ComforTED©.  Lesley’s organization is impacting many people and bringing much needed comfort and love to families who have experienced the loss of a child.  It was my honor to carry Chris with me on my run and I am powerfully touched by the kindness of Lesley and her wonderful organization. 

About run to heal:

I run to heal.  It’s where I learn to hold my grief in my heart as love.  It’s where I practice putting one foot in front of another.  It’s where I honor Quinn and other babies who are gone too soon from stillbirth, miscarriage, or neonatal death.  In preparation for my first Mother’s Day as a parent to both a living and dead child, I asked my friends and community to dedicate a workout to Quinn.  This was a powerful, soulful, and healing experience.  I felt lifted up and loved by the community.  I was humbled that so many people carried Quinn’s spirit with them.  I hope to accompany others on their journey after child loss and hold them and their son or daughter in my heart.  It is an opportunity for me to honor their child and learn their story.  Together, we will learn how to put one foot in front of the other and run to heal.  Dedicate a run here


  1. Thank you for your beautiful encounter with Chris at your side - I can practically see your little adventure together. Thank you also for your lovely words re ComforTED Lesley <3 xx

    1. Lesley, it was my pleasure. Thank you for sharing your story with me and I am inspired by your good work. I hope we can keep in touch.

      My heart is with you.