Thursday, May 2, 2013

Bereavement Diapers

After Ella passed I had someone reach out to me and since then we have formed a close bond. This mom experienced the loss of a son who also had chromosomal abnormalities. For months we exchanged very long emails. Here we shared personal details and emotions that no one else would ever be able to understand. Many times we have apologized to ourselves, and each other, for feeling certain ways, all the while finding comfort in sharing the sadness in our hearts that would usually exist, but in unspoken language. Weeks after we lose a loved one the phone calls end, the cards stop coming, and everyone goes on with their lives. THIS is when the agony hits, the sorrow, the tears. I really looked forward to these emails during this time. She reached out even more then, knowing exactly how a fellow moms empty arms ached. During one of these emails I shared how I felt this unexplainable need to change Ella's diaper before her body, as I knew it, left my arms forever. As a mom who's heart is one with her child, I knew it was only right to have a fresh diaper on my baby. She replied with an email saying that she chuckled over this statement. When she let go of her son she felt the same desire. Unfortunately her son was much smaller than the average baby so they had to improvise.

A couple months ago I came across a website called . I really liked their mission :

Our wish is to bless families that suffer the same heartache, providing their angel with a soft, beautiful diaper in which to be photographed and laid to rest. WE PROVIDE TWO MATCHING DIAPERS PER FAMILY (and that's really important), one for the baby and one for the family to keep in a memory box. When possible, we will also make tiny micropreemie blankets that are appropriately sized for their beautiful little bodies.
Grieving parents often feel very lost, alone, and confused. Every special effort to honor their loss goes a long way. It is very difficult for a family to say goodbye to their child before they got to say a decent hello. These diapers, made with love, tell parents that someone understands that their child existed, that they are special, loved, real, and that they matter. The love that goes into these diapers tells a grieving parent that someone understands that their loss is tremendous. Because a "person’s a person, no matter how small". 

 These diapers will be provided free of charge for families that have suffered the loss of a preemie or micro preemie child through stillbirth or NICU loss. They fill an enormous void in the bereavement community, providing dignity and modesty for the tiniest angels for whom even the smallest commercial diapers are far too large. 

Last month we got together a small group of moms who have experienced loss, along with my sister Ana. We spent the morning cutting, sewing, and pinning diapers. We all enjoyed making the diapers, it brought a lot of healing as well as gratitude to be able to reach out to a community of those whom we are already a part of. Each of us brought pictures, scrapbooks and keepsakes of our little angels and we got to share our stories and our babies. In every way it was a beautiful experience. Thankfully, many will never be able to fully appreciate how something as conventional as a fitting diaper could appease a sorrowful heart.

They have a facebook page called Teeny Tears Bereavement Diapers. On the blog and facebook page they update followers on how many diapers have been donated and what hospitals in our country are participating. This group has been a blessing in our lives and will bless many more families in the future. I am proud to be a part of this mission.

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