Today is international Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. A global 'wave of light' will be created as those remembering the souls of little lives ended too quickly light candles in windows across the world, from 7pm to 8pm in each time zone. I love the symbolism of the candle and its flame as a memorial to S, whose soft, flickering presence continues to gently light and warm so many of our days.
H recently read somewhere that the Inuit of Greenland believe the dancing, multi-coloured lights of the Aurora Borealis to be the souls of lost babies playing together in the heavens. I don't know if that's true, but I absolutely love the beautiful and playful image that it conjures. The idea that their waves of light are not just symbolic gestures that we as babylost parents make to memorialise our babies, but that those babies are the very filaments of the cosmos itself, colouring our skies, warming our lives and enveloping us in wonders.
It feels strange, but also appropriate, that just as fluttering hope and burgeoning love is developing for this new life inside me, there comes a special moment for remembering what came before, what brought us to this place. This juxtaposition will always be hard, but it will also always be my reality. Joy and grief and love are all wrapped up in each day and how we live them. I feel like this juxtaposition shapes my experience as a parent and as a human being. It isn't the first time I've been confronted with these inherent, messy, life-affirming contradictions.
This evening, as I do my best to nurture new life, I'll also be thinking of all those who grieve for the babies they never got to know. I'll think of their babies, but instead of just remembering them, I'll be imagining their ongoing presence and the beauty they bestow, up there whirling happily among the colours and the clouds.
|How's that for a brag-worthy baby pic? Source.|