Thoughts on Miscarriage
I want to share some of the things I learned and/or thought regarding miscarriage, especially when there is a recognizable baby resulting. I understand that with some miscarriages, the parents do not get to see or hold their lost baby, but that was not my experience, so I will not speak to that, at this point.
I found a site that listed items in a kit one could purchase to use, and I copied the list, with the intent of making my own of most of the items. However, time ran short, and I didn't make most of them.
The list is below, with my comments.
- Memory Box - box painted or decorated - I did decorate a box in which to keep memories of my son.
- Burial Box - We used a check order box, but if it ever happens again, we want a wooden box. It would be sturdier and more fitting as a burial box, we think.
- Baby Blanket - hand-made blanket/Gown - hand-made gown - David was tiny, and much too fragile to dress. I was blessed with a hand-made pouch in which to 'dress' him.
- Stuffed Animal - a stuffed animal is meant to be included in pictures with the baby so later the family can have something to hold onto - We did not do this. I don't know if it's something that I would have wanted to do or not, but we did not. I'm sure it would be a comfort to some.
- Impressions Kit - air-dry clay for the nurses to take foot molds and possibly hand molds of the baby's precious digits, an opening in the box can be used to put a picture of the child or a data card - We did not do this. David was so fragile and "floppy" that it would have been difficult, if not impossible, to get a good impression. Perhaps something like this would be better for a later loss, and certainly for a full term loss, but not practical for an earlier loss.
- Camera - preferably digital, as I, at least, do not want to take a chance on someone at a photo processing place being "grossed out" by my precious child. Printers these days can usually print photo-quality - especially if you have photo paper.
Also, take *more photos* than you think you will want. Don't take the minimum. It won't be enough.
While this may sound odd, you *can* keep the baby in the refrigerator for several hours in order to preserve the baby and have more time to take care of making memories. Don't be afraid to do so. This is the *only* time you have with the child's physical body. Take your time, get all the photos and memories you will need before you bury the baby.
Don't be afraid to hold the baby. Do let family members see and/or hold the baby if they want to. Spend time with the baby - while you can.
- Necklace/Bracelet Charm - We did not do this. Yet. I still may.
- Journal - a journal to write thoughts and feelings, offers gentle prompts as a guide; and a Pen - We did not do this. However, I have my own web site, and dear friends, and so *I* did not need it. If one has a smaller support system, or no other outlet, one certainly may prefer to have a journal.
- Wisp Of Hair Card - a card to keep a snip of hair in - We did not do this. David had no hair to speak of, so it would have been moot anyway.
- Baby's Prints Card - a card to place foot prints and/or handprints (it is sometimes possible to get footprints off a baby as small as 13 weeks gestation) - We did not do this, but I had intended to. I hadn't gotten a card ready, and by the time I re-read my list, we had already buried him. I did get a good photo of his hand, so that sort of takes the place of this. However, I recommend having something like this ready and using it.
- Data Card - baby's name, weight and length - As David was so small and fragile, we did not weigh or measure him. The photos we took of him, though, are mostly with me holding him in my hand, so size is fairly obvious. This is another thing that might be more practical for a later miscarriage than for an earlier one.
- Pocket Kleenex - I carried a handkerchief. Less messy/no need for a trash can.