The leaves are turning red and orange, filling the air with their earthy scent. Pumpkins dot the doorsteps of our neighbourhood and the stores have their Halloween decorations out in full force. The air is thankfully cooler and perfect for colourful scarves and jackets, toques and boots. It’s October: the month of Canadian Thanksgiving, specialized pumpkin drinks from Starbucks, and those way-too-addictive boxes of mini-chocolate snacks.
It’s also the month for Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness.
In this next week leading up to October 15th (Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day), I am partnering with fellow loss mama, and author extraordinaire, Stefanie Tong, to help raise awareness and break the silence surrounding this important topic.
“When a child loses his parent, they are called an orphan. When a spouse loses her or his partner, they are called a widow or widower. When parents lose their child, there isn’t a word to describe them.”
— President Reagan
In the US alone, close to one million pregnancies end in loss every year. In 1988, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed October 1988 as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month and with that, the movement began. Since the early 2000’s, October 15 has been increasingly recognized around the globe as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. (For further history, read here and here.)
Over the next seven days, Stefanie and I will tackling daily journal prompts about grief and life after loss — and we encourage you to join us! Throughout both of our journeys with pregnancy loss, journaling has been an important outlet and coping tool for us. As we process our grief, putting words to paper helps release pent up emotions, and refines and clarifies thoughts. We invite you to join us in uncovering truths as we explore and work through the heartbreak that comes with pregnancy loss. You don’t have to be a great writer to journal, you simply need to be willing and honest with yourself.
Each day, the journal prompt will appear on MommyMannegren and ECEmom’s Facebook and Instagram pages – along with our own personal reflections. Use the hashtag #thismotherhoodstory to share your own thoughts and insights, and help us build meaningful conversations about the reality of pregnancy loss! In order to avoid missing any of these posts, so be sure to follow along on my Facebook and Instagram AND on Stefanie’s Facebook and Instagram.
To all my fellow loss mamas, this month is for you! Let’s raise our voices and help inform others about the reality of pregnancy loss. Let’s weep and mourn and remember and laugh together. These are our stories of loss and triumph. It’s October and we’re silent no longer. So grab your pumpkin spice latte and a cozy blanket, a pen and your favourite journal, and join us as we continue to break the silence surrounding pregnancy loss.