Friday, November 30, 2007

Ways to get through the holidays

Here is a list of ideas that may be helpful to someone. These are from a monthly newletter I receive from Brief Encounters.

  • Begin making a special tree ornament for your baby. Cross-stitch or knit ornaments, angels, are all good ideas. Or engrave the name on a beautiful brass ornament.
  • If you are sending Christmas cards, consider signing your baby's name.
  • Write a love letter to your baby. Tell him or her how much you miss them and wish they were here. Seal it in an envelope and put it in a safe place.
  • Shop for Christmas gifts on a "good" day. Choose gifts from a catalog or have a good friend shop with or for you. Try to rest as much as possible.
  • Cook meals in double portions and freeze half for a time when you are feeling tired or overwhelmed. Use paper plates and napkins. Do things the easiest way.
  • Tie ribbons on a tree in memory of your baby. Blue for a son; pink for a daughter; white for a baby whose gender is unknown. Tie ribbons to denote how old your child would be now.
  • Adopt a needy child from an angel tree; maybe the same age as your baby would be now. It may help you to browse the toy or clothes department and purchase a gift for that age.
  • Think of ways you want the family to remember your baby during the holidays. Try to mentally prepare yourself for the many confusing emotions this season brings.
  • Plan to decorate your baby's gravesite. A decorated tree or wreath, small toys, snow blanket, flowers, gold or silver garlands work well.
  • You may wish to invite family and friends to bring an ornament in memory of your baby to help decorate a Christmas tree.
  • Let your children make a special ornament for their baby too.
  • If it hurts too much to use a particular decoration, pack it safely away for another year. In time, your heart will be ready to celebrate.
  • Decorate the altar of your church with a poinsettia or other flower in memory of your baby on Christmas Eve.
  • Display a photo album or scrapbook of your baby on the coffee table. Let your family know it's okay to talk about him or her. It's okay to share your tears too.
  • Record the family story of your baby; "Remember when...?" Recall when you learned you were pregnant, special memories of the pregnancy, etc.
  • Do something special in memory of your baby; light a candle; say their name out loud; hang an ornament; create a table centerpiece; give a gift; share your love.
  • Consider traditions. Are there some you want to keep? Some you feel you can't handle? Do something different this year. It's okay to make some changes.
You could order a personalized Christmas ornament with your baby's name on it here.

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