Saturday, March 28, 2009

Joining Baby Loss Mamas "Under the Tree"

Carly's latest "Under the Tree" prompts have already brought about many baby loss mama's to share beautiful tributes, thoughts, and healing meaning making. And her questions this week, have brought me to join them.

Do you have a special place in your home for your baby/ies? What is it like? Do you have any rituals that you perform in memory of your baby/ies?

We have pictures of Caitlin in our living room, work, wallet, and everywhere anyone with living children would keep pictures. In our home, I purchased a stand alone white closet that holds all of Caitlin's clothing, her toys, books I read and sang to her, her hospital combs, lotions, pacifier, and cards of congratulations and later sympathy. This is where I add other items that come to be Caitlin's. It's meaning for me is that she belongs in fabric of our lives, and this is one way I parent her memory. The closet also includes DH's things and some of mine. So, we use it on a daily basis.

The other special place is Caitlin's grave site. Her stone with her name on it is important to me and I go and visit when I need to be where her body is. I do have a ritual of sorts. I bring my iPod and play the "Caitlin & Mom" playlist of songs I sang to her, songs of healing, songs sung/played at her funeral, and songs since her death that help me think of her. I usually squeeze the toy to make funny sounds, because that's something I used to do for her in the hospital and she loved those funny sounds and followed the toy with such intent.

The toy still works, and some day I know it won't because of the weather or because it will get lost or taken--it happens I know. But for over a year now, I visit and squeeze and Caitlin and I listen to giggles, whistles, and bird tweeting. It used to make me cry because I miss her so terrible, but it also makes me smile because I remember her life.

At some point in my visit, I visit each of the other graves of those in the baby section, just because I know how important it is to remember our children. Before I leave, I touch and kiss her name, and I talk to her. Sometimes out loud, because it helps me to hear me say her name and feel the vibrations of my voice going to where her spirit is.

[I don't have enough energy to answer all the "Under the Tree" questions, but I'm grateful for the prompts to further healing for all of us who gather under the tree.]


  1. I love hearing about Caitlin and your love for your sweet baby girl. I especially love seeing her pink cheeks. What a beautiful baby. You are so giving, visiting others' graves. I think of you and pray for you often.

  2. Hello Caitsmom, I am so glad that I found your blog. please look at mine too. I have been looking and looking and I have found very few mommies of babies with Down syndrome. Thank you for "blogging under the tree". Julie

  3. Thank you so much for posting about "Under the Tree"! I am looking forward to joining in. What a beautiful service Carly is doing for us with such tender, aching hearts!
    I love Caitlin's closet--that is a beautiful idea. I also loved reading about your rituals when you visit her grave. It helps me to read your blog. Thank you for writing.
    Wishing you peace and nearness to your beautiful daughter.