Why Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month is Important to Me

By: Crystal Webster

Let’s be honest, national holidays are all over the map these days. There’s National American Cheese Month {October}, National Train your Dog Month {January}, and National Novel Writing Month {November}…just to name a few. There’s a national holiday for just about everything out there. I’m sure if I looked hard enough, I could find a National Harry Potter Day, National Coffee Grounds Day, and National I Wish I Was a Mermaid Day…

The ‘market’ for holidays is so overcrowded and noisy that there is no possible way you could celebrate every single one. Can we all just all agree that ‘National Holidays’ that don’t readily offer presents, extra days off work, or candy are pretty much cr@p? …that is…except to the communities they serve…

Pregnancy and Infant loss effects 1 in 4 women. That’s 25% of women have been touched by the loss of a child.

Let me say that one more time: there are approximately 40 million women in the US that have lost a child during pregnancy or shortly after.

I will bet you a nickel that if you raise a finger for every one of your friends you know that has lost a child you won’t even need both hands…

Why is that? Statistically you ‘should’ be able to fill a trapper keeper with names and stories.  It’s because very few are comfortable talking about their ‘loss that was never really theirs to begin with’.

I’m here to say that’s absolute sh!t and will scream from the mountain tops that I grieve daily the daughter that I only had eight brief hours on earth.

That’s what Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month does to people – 31 days a year. It turns the mild-mannered soccer mom of 4 {er…I mean…3} that can barely remember to charge her cell phone {let alone where she put it, and why is it sticky now?} into an advocate for awareness, change, and community.

You can’t scroll through your Facebook Timeline or your Instagram Feed without seeing the blue and pink ribbon or the #1in4 hashtag in October.

While it’s a start, why do we (or should we) limit our awareness to just October. Obviously the ‘change’ part is important but I argue that the ‘community’ part Is MORE important.

Mothers of angel children often suffer in silence and isolation (may times self-imposed). Sometimes, they miscarried so early in their pregnancy they didn’t have the opportunity to share their exciting news – and it’s even harder to share something you’ve lost when no one knew you there was something to lose. Other times, it’s just swept under the rug.

There are not always pictures, things, and concrete memories of child loss.

Somehow that makes it less real to those that haven’t experienced it themselves. We mothers feel like we don’t have the right to grieve our loss – when in reality we’ve lost so much more than just a baby. We’ve lost our hopes and dreams, our future.

So, this year, I’m challenging you to be that soccer mom that shoves her {middle?} finger in the air and adds another ‘notch’ to her friend’s hand. THAT is the only way child loss (at any age) will become appropriate to discuss in polite company.  

Our angel children are just as much a part of our family as our living children.

About Crystal Webster

Crystal Webster is Madelyn Elizabeth’s mother and Founder and Chief Solace Officer of Sharing Solace. 

Madelyn died just 8 short hours after birth while still in her mother’s arms.  As Crystal grieved the loss of her only child she began to feel isolated and ill-equipped to handle her emotional journey. Vowing to honor her daughter’s brief life and support others from feeling as lost and lonely as she did – Sharing Solace was founded.

Sharing Solace’s patented concept brings together those grieving any type of loss by intersecting physical keepsake gifts INTENDED to be ‘paid forward’ to others with the online community and resources often neglected. View our mission here

More information can be found on our website SharingSolace.com and through Instagram and Facebook. And don’t forget your copy of our Mini Gratitude Journal + Mood Tracker here.

Remember. You’re not alone.

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