Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Honoring your stillborn child this Christmas

If you are like me, the joy of the upcoming holidays is numbed by the grief of our stillborn child.  I find it hard to join the mainstream happy holiday spirit, so I have been reflecting on ways to bring meaning to our bereaved family this holiday season.  Here are some ideas that are comforting to us:

Burn a special candle for your loved one throughout the holiday season

Buy a gift you would have given your loved one and donate it to a child in need

Buy or make a memorial ornament - I love these two: 

Stillborn memorial ornament
Picture property of stillbornandstillbreathing.com
Fill a clear glass ball ornament with strips of paper with messages and wishes for your loved one

Stillborn memorial ornament
Picture property of thriftycraftygirl.com
Fill a clear glass ball ornament with belongings from your baby – her hospital bracelet, hospital hat, charms that were given to you, or other remembrances

Start a new holiday tradition

Hold a candlelight vigil – gather friends and family, light candles, and listen to Christmas carols

Set a place for your loved one at the dinner table.  If that’s too difficult, invite someone from your loved ones past to dinner

Hang a stocking for your loved one

Donate to a charity in your loved one’s name

Visit or spend time in a place where you feel close to your loved one – her grave, a memorial tree, etc.  Bring flowers or another comfort.

If you can’t do the big family Christmas Eve or Christmas dinner, then don’t!

If you need to be surrounded by family and friends, then do host a big Christmas Eve or Christmas dinner!

(This is where I think there is a difference between introvert and extrovert grievers – and that’s OK!)

What are your family's traditions?  Please share them with me!

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