My friend Ashley told me about an organization called Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep. I've spent the last 30 minutes crying from sadness, inspiration, and joy. This organization provides professional photos for families who experience early infant loss. There is a network of professional photographers all over the U.S. that volunteer their time and talents to provide a lasting, tangible memory of a family's beloved baby. At first I thought it was a little weird, but the more I thought about it the more it made sense.
You can't pretend that pregnancy isn't amazing and noteworthy. Treating a stillbirth like a medical condition creates a deeper chasm in an already broken heart. The best way to heal is to acknowledge that it happened and preserve any and all joy.
When little Oliver lived his brilliant one hour, the family was forever changed. Who would have thought that a one pound baby would impact us so deeply? His mom says that they were able to love him his whole life. What a beautiful perspective! They keep his blanket and his photo in his nursery that he never got to see. They remember him with fondness and love instead of chalking it up to another statistic. He lived and he was so loved.
When the Duggars lost their child at 21 weeks, they utilized NILMDTS' services to preserve little Jubilee's memory. There is an article about it here. There is also a photo of her tiny hand resting on her mother's finger.
Right now, our baby monitor is sitting on the coffee table in front of me while I sit on a comfortable couch watching cable. My healthy 95th percentile baby is sleeping soundly in her crib. I am beyond blessed. "I know I'm filled to be emptied again. The seed I receive I will sow." I'm going to find more ways to bless others, whether it be giving my time, my possessions, my monies, or just giving awareness to things that are more prevalent than we think. Please join me.