Thursday, October 15, 2009

October 15th is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day

Just One Hour . . .

Heartbreaking is one word that can be applied to the loss of a baby during infancy or pregnancy.  Unfortunately, I'm all too familiar with such situations (from a second-hand point of view.)  When I was an emergency room nurse some years ago, our large ER usually cared for at least one patient experiencing a miscarriage each day.  One of the saddest that I was personally involved in occurred when a middle-aged woman came in for an exam due to some "female problems."  She was in pain and bleeding, but suspected she was menopausal.  Her spouse was at her side, and they were both were shocked by the doctor's announcement that the lab tests confirmed that she was, in fact, pregnant.  This stunned couple digested the news, and even as the lady was prepped for a bedside ultrasound, they began to plan how they would fit an infant into their lives now that their other kids were grown and out of the house. Sadly the ultrasound soon revealed the cold fact that this early pregnancy was in the process of an irreversible miscarriage. Although aware of this pregnancy for less than one hour, the emotional toll on this wonderful couple was tremendous, nevertheless.

PG and Infant Loss Awareness
Since 1988 October has been recognized as  Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Awareness month.  Special worldwide observances are planned for October 15th each year.  Perhaps most notable among the planned observances is the "wave of light" that will sweep across the world for 24 hours in memory of the babies who have "gone too soon."  You can  participate in this symbolic gesture of remembrance by lighting a candle at 7 pm in your own time zone and keeping it burning for at least one hour.

It's only natural to seek support in times of grief.  Here are some suggestions:

Organizations providing support to bereaved parents
National Share, support for parents


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