Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness | Memories, Resources + an Invitation

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I’ve talked a bit about our little one, who we said goodbye to a little over a year ago, here and here. Throughout the past year, both kind friends and various sects of the interweb have introduced me to a plethora of resources for navigating the journey to healing that comes after experiencing such a loss.

With October being Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month, now seems an appropriate time to share the collection of resources that Caleb and I have found to be the most precious as we remember our beloved Freddie. My hope is that these links can be passed on to YOUR loved ones who have babies in Heaven and that they will help enable you to extend arms of compassion and care in those times when you don’t know what to say or how to help.

And if you yourself are one of the 1 in 4 who have a son or daughter waiting for you with Jesus, may these stories, resources, and remembrances touch your heart and remind you that you are not alone in your grief.

The cradle pictured above stands empty in our spare bedroom. We scored an amazing deal on it at an auction last summer, and my husband spent the entire day after we saw those two lines on that test refinishing and painting it. I may have only carried our baby for three months, but she turned our world upside-down. Our lives are forever changed.

We may not know the sleepless nights of the newborn stage or the messy days of the toddler years like so many of our friends right now, but we do know what it’s like to love someone who is a part of each of us more than we ever thought possible. And we do know the sometimes sleepless, sometimes messy ache of not being able to watch that child live and grow.

Raising awareness for the loss of human life, while still in the womb or not, is not about self-pity. Not only does it garner support and validation for the life-altering grief that yes, 25% of American women have experienced, but it’s also an effort for the advocacy of and education for safe pregnancy practices. To me it is one of the tiny slices of redemption that we have opportunity to participate in within this broken, weary world.

It’s for these reasons that I’ve gone pink and blue on social media this month, and that I’m looking forward to taking part in the International Wave of Light that will take place worldwide, in each respective time zone, at 7 p.m. tomorrow evening, October 15. If there’s a baby whose absence you’re feeling this year, I encourage you to light a candle in his or her memory, and let family members know that they’re thought of and loved. Ours will be lit for our tiny Freddie Joy, the luckiest little Fisher who got to be the first of our little family to meet Jesus face-to-face. ❤

Loss, Perspective, & Hope

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These little shoes were the first item we purchased for our firstborn. The hand-crocheted blanket, selected with love by Freddie’s daddy, was a memento gift from the kind people at the Lancaster Garden of Hope.

Those of you who also have experienced the complicated grief of losing a child’s life during pregnancy know too well the tousling, tossing succession of emotions that plague childless parents. Others who have known the sorrow of infertility identify with much of this as well. There is a cultural shift taking place in our generation, moving to an unprecedented place of openness with regards to the topics of miscarriage, infertility, and childbirth, that I believe is healthy and helpful, though still harrowing and hard.

I miss my baby. We miss our baby. Our “Freddie” (his or her in-the-womb name) would likely be just about four months old today. We feel sure we’d be three of the happiest people on the planet. The antique cradle that stands empty in our guest room would be at our bedside, likely smelling of fresh sheets and that unmistakable newborn scent, sporting a few more paint chips and maybe some stray drops of regurgitated milk. The desk I’m sitting at right now would be in a different spot to allow room for the changing table that’s upstairs holding extra linens right now instead of diapers and burp cloths. There might be a pile of baby laundry waiting for me in the dryer instead of the beach towels I used last week. I could be staring at this screen through bleary, teary eyes because I got a total of three hours of sleep last night, and only in 45-minute increments. And what’s more, I could have a cooing, or gurgling, or even screaming, bundle of joy making my arms feel like they’re going to fall off at any moment.

Instead, my arms ache with emptiness. I am fairly well-rested. My house is in order. I brought a paycheck home from work today. Caleb will come home soon to a quiet house and be kissed by a calm, unharried wife. We will eat dinner in peace, uninterrupted by the sounds coming from a baby monitor or the need to tend to a diaper blow-out. But oh, what we wouldn’t give for any of that.


Last week dear friends of ours who had sailed high on the wings of hope for a long-awaited healthy pregnancy were suddenly, cruelly forced to say goodbye to a tiny growing son or daughter…for the sixth time. SIX precious babies await them in Heaven. Caleb and I feel at times overwhelmed with anticipation for our one.


But, hope.

H o p e  :   a virtue.  Hope, associated with joy, peace, fulfilled longing. And this: When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory. Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain (1 Corinthians 15:4-58).

Our Jesus carries us, and He goes even further — giving us hope. He has promised to not cause pain without allowing something new to be born (Isaiah 66:9, NCV). And learning trust, with the reward of hope, is an understatedly beautiful thing.

Garden of Hope Memorial Service

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In early August of last year, Caleb and I were overjoyed to learn that a tiny little son or daughter of our very own was growing inside me. We immediately began addressing him or her as “Freddie,” though neither of us remembers exactly why or how. We were some of the most excited parents we’d ever met.

In September, just a few short weeks after we announced our delight to the rest of the world, we discovered that our little Freddie had opened her eyes for the first time to see Jesus’ face, instead of one of ours. (I say “her” because I just feel it was a baby girl, not because we actually know for sure.)

Though it was a devastating loss, we found solace in knowing that He is caring for her better than we could have here on earth, until we get to join them in Heaven.

There are kind, benevolent folks here in Lancaster, Pennsylvania who, softened by the grief of infant losses of their own, built a memorial garden as a ministry for families who’ve had to say goodbye to children before they really got to live. (Check out their Facebook page for more information.)

Today we attended the Lancaster Garden of Hope’s annual memorial service, which included special music, a reading of the babies’ names who have gone on before us, and releasing of balloons in their memory.

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Pregnancy loss is a complicated sorrow, one that is hard to understand unless you’ve experienced it personally. Caleb and I have been blessed to have been surrounded by compassionate, caring friends and family who have made the journey to healing much less arduous.

This afternoon’s service was a special time for us to remember the little one who made us parents, and to reflect on how her presence changed our lives forever, even though she’s not in our arms right now.

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