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Parents of lost babies and potential of all kinds: come here to share the technicolour, the vividness, the despair, the heart-broken-open, the compassion we learn for others, having been through this mess — and see it reflected back at you, acknowledged and understood.

Thanks to photographer Xin Li and to artist Stephanie Sicore for their respective illustrations and photos.

for one and all > Hope

Today I have been deeply touched as I ponder this first Easter after our sweet granddaughter' s birth and death 5 weeks ago. After an excruciatingly long and difficult winter, the daffodils, tulips and pear trees are blooming in my yard - yellow and red and pink and white. My cherry and crab apple trees are almost ready to break into flower with their luscious perfume. And the birds' songs are glorious. Shortly after receiving our baby's diagnosis, after telling their children about her "broken heart" (it was easier to explain to them her heart problems than the congenital diaphragmic hernia) and that she probably wouldn't get to stay with us for very long, our 3 1/2 year old grandson, her big brother, had a dream that Baby Alyssa was born and she was a little bird in the tree singing her love to him. So a bird has become our symbol for our sweet baby. And my flowering trees are filled with birds, reminding me that our love for our baby and her love for us will always, forever bless us. Today a robin landed on a branch outside my bedroom window and my breath caught as it turned and looked straight at me. Tears filled eyes and I missed our baby. We are deeply religious and grateful that this Easter has an added significance to us. It is still raw and painful and difficult and heartbreaking and tearful - two friends gave me hugs at the grocery store today which opened the floodgates- but I am finding hope. I am curious if any of you also have symbols that remind you of your babies that bring a small measure of hope to you? Please know that I pray for each of you every day.
April 14, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterC
I don't myself have any symbol I associate with my daughter. I've heard that many people do and find it very comforting. Butterflies, ladybugs, dragonflies, birds, bunnies, various flowers, certain types of rain, all these I know have become associated with a loved child. Also words, numbers, other symbols.

I am glad you are finding some hope growing in your heart, C.
April 15, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJill A.
Dear C, I am glad that the beauty of nature gives you comfort. In a small way it does to me. It reminds me that the world will go on whatever dreadful thing has happened to my family - a very tiny part of the universe.
However it also reminds me of all the wonderful things I would have wanted to share with my daughter. The budding trees, flowers, butterflies, the feel of grass under your feet and sand between your toes. The easy, free and basic things that make life a little better. At the moment they make me feel the loss more keenly and the guilt of breathing the cool morning air of spring when she will never do so.
I do have hope but only the hope that next spring I will feel a little better. I do not hope for complete healing and nor do I want this just now as the pain makes her memory more real.

Thank you for your thought provoking post. Wishing you and your family a peaceful Easter.
April 15, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterKE
Hi C,

Yes, we have butterflies as a symbol for our sweet boy. After his death I seemed to notice a huge amount whenever I was outside. This continues for us, as just a few weeks ago we celebrated one of our daughters birthdays and a butterfly came up and landed on the pram and stayed around for about 20 mins. We knew it was him.

I'm sorry for your loss of your sweet granddaughter, and I hope you treated yourself gently over the easter period. xx
April 19, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterKaren