Please hear from the heart of our Founder and Director, Kelly Gerken, about the virtual support options and information available from Sufficient Grace Ministries in the video below:
Virtual online or phone support is available from a certified SGM Comfort Doula. You can contact us at 419-278-7640 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for additional support if you do not find the information you need in the videos and text on this page. Find additional videos about how to use the Dreams of You Comfort Packages and Bathing a Fragile Baby toward the bottom of the page.
For families who are experiencing a stillbirth or neonatal loss…
This Difficult Time
Whether you are facing a life-limiting diagnosis for your baby or learning that your child will be born still this is still a precious time to look forward to, meeting your son or daughter. You are still going to birth this child into the world from your womb. You can still hold your baby, make memories, fill this time with gentleness and love. You can still honor and treasure this precious life, this little one you have longed to meet and hold.
Creating memories when a baby dies is not something we contemplate until we are faced with the painful reality. At first, you may feel strange taking pictures or spend time creating tangible memories with your baby. But most parents are grateful, in the days and years to come, that they spent the time holding their baby and celebrating the life of their precious little one. You may be scared that you will become too attached to your baby if you spend time creating memories and spending time with your baby. But as a mom, you cannot be more attached than you already are. Even if you feel uncomfortable, it is important for your healing to take the time to get pictures and make memories if you wish to do so.
Questions to Consider
While you are working through this challenging time, it is helpful to prepare your heart for what lies ahead. No matter the age of your baby at the time of loss or hospital policy, you will have forms to fill out. You will likely face decisions you never thought you’d be considering. If applicable, it would be good to discuss some of the possibilities with your partner. This will alleviate leaving one person responsible for making these difficult decisions. It’s important to understand and communicate your feelings to one another, even in the midst of this very painful time.
- How would you like to spend the time? Considering seeing and holding your baby.
- What kinds of mementos are available to honor your baby’s life?
- Will there be time to make tangible memories or to take pictures?
- If a comfort companion or remembrance photographer is available, would you like their support?
- What options are available as a final resting place for your baby?
Remembering Your Baby
Even if a baby’s life has been brief, there are ways to honor your child. Below is a list of ideas for creating tangible memories during the time you have to spend with your baby. You are still a mother…still a father. Your baby lived. Your baby matters. Your baby is worth celebrating…worth remembering.
This is your opportunity to fill a lifetime of memories into moments. Spend this precious time the way you wish. Don’t rush or allow others to rush you.
- Have a teddy bear to hold for comfort.
- Keep an ultrasound picture – Ask for one if it is not offered.
- Name your baby.
- Wrap your baby in a special blanket. Wraps and gowns are available, even for very tiny babies.
- Play a special song.
- Journal your thoughts, dreams, and feelings.
- Write letters to your baby.
- Take a lot of pictures of baby and family with baby.
- Pray together .
- Bring special jewelry or other items that you would like with you and/or your baby in a photograph.
- Read a book to your baby.
- Complete a special memory book. (Dreams of You Memory packages available from SGM.)
- If baby is not too fragile, take time to bathe and dress your baby.
- Spend time saying hello and goodbye.
- Get a family photo.
- Arrange for friends and family to meet and celebrate your baby if you wish.
- Find a remembrance photographer.
- Keep your baby with you as long as you like.
- Perform a Baptism, Dedication, Naming Ceremony or other ceremonies that are important to you and your family. The nurse can ask the hospital chaplain to help you with this.
If a remembrance photographer is not available to come in-person due to CoVid-19 restrictions or location, you can take pictures with your cell phone or digital camera. Ask the nurse to help you as well. Sufficient Grace Ministries will edit images for you. You can email us at email@example.com for instructions on how to get us your images.
CLICK HERE for remembrance photography tips and ideas.
Information about in-person and online support is available on our online Facebook Groups:
You can also email us to set up a phone conference or Zoom Meeting online for one-on-one peer support: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Request Dreams of You Comfort Packages here.
How to Use Dreams of You Comfort Resources and Memory-making Ideas
Bathing a Fragile Baby
If you are experiencing or facing the potential loss of a baby in the first or second trimester, visit our Miscarriage Support Page.