One thing that was really important to me after miscarrying was a physical reminder of my daughter’s existence. It sounds a little over dramatic, but it’s the truth 🙂 I have a few pictures – two previous sonograms and one bump shot – but I wanted something small that could be seen daily. When my son Carter was born I got a silver charm with his name and birthdate on it. Since we didn’t know we were having a girl until after she was gone, we had never named her, but she did have a birthstone. I scoured the internet until I found the perfect birthstone charm to hang alongside my son’s. And now it is nestled in between Carter’s charm and my six month old daughter’s charm on a chain I wear almost daily. A small but sweet reminder of the little angel of ours.
I have searched the Internet again, and found several more things that might be good gifts for a friend (or gifts to yourself) after losing a pregnancy or infant.
Puzzle piece charm – beyond a birthstone, engraved name, birth date, or due date, I have also seen a beautiful idea using a puzzle piece charm like this one. Some people use the puzzle piece as a symbol of the piece of their heart that is missing, but I prefer to think of my miscarriage as a part of my story, my identity, a small piece of the bigger picture.
Mama Metal – these are strong (but delicate looking!) metal necklaces that are perfect for little hands to grab and pull, but beautiful and meaningful pieces of art. Some sources: Silver Odyssey, Busy Bangles, Hatchling Handcrafted, Beadin by the Sea
Molly Bear – these teddy bears are specially made to weigh the same as the child that is lost.
Plant a rosebush or tree in baby’s honor – I pretty much have a brown thumb, so I won’t make any specific recommendations, but there are knowledgeable people at plant nurseries who can help! I have a friend who has planted a rose bush for each of her miscarriages, and another whose husband had already started the tradition of planting a tree for each child, so when she miscarried he planted one for that baby too.
Tattoos – I have been obsessed with sparrow tattoos after reading that Egyptians believed that sparrows carried souls to heaven. This is one of my favorites that I’ve seen.
Hope Boxes – a group that several of my friends are a part of is Hope Mommies. My aunt connected me with them last year, and after a couple of Facebook messages, a complete stranger dropped off a box of goodies on my porch! It included chocolate, tea, lotions, a Bible, CD, and a book about grieving. There are small local chapters who get together regularly, but they also do bigger events like retreats. This group is wonderful, and connecting a friend with them (when they may not feel like reaching out themselves) would be very thoughtful!
Annual remembrances – I know it sounds odd, but as a friend, write down the date and then that way you are able to send a card or something the next year. I have seen a lot of mommies sharing their stories and one thing that struck me was how many remember the exact date they miscarried. Knowing you are not alone in acknowledging that day is so special.
If none of these ideas strike a chord with you , Grieve Out Loud has a huge list of resources for remembrances, support, information, groups, photographers, and more here. Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep specializes in remembrance photography, but also has an extensive resource page here.