Healing after loss is different for every parent, but one thing bereaved parents can all agree on, is that it is a challenge. Days get easier eventually and joy comes back into your life again, but life as you know it, has changed.
These are some of the things that helped my wife and I through the loss of our son, especially during the first year. These are practices that you can continue for life.
- Talking about your child to others, especially letting the people around you know it is okay to bring your child up.
- Writing to your child, or about your feelings, and chronicling the experience. Looking back and recognizing the pain from a year ago, and being able to see how far we have come, makes me feel like we are not defeated.
- Doing good in the name of your child.
- Self care and exercise. For me, it was yoga, massage, reiki, aromatherapy, grounding sessions at the beach where I dug my feet into the sand, lighting incense and a candle at my son’s altar and talking to him. For my wife, this meant running, and a lot of it.
- Listening to music, for me specifically his birth playlist, and feeling everything of those moments, even if it reduced me to tears.
- Taking breaks from the grief to have a night out with friends, watch a funny movie, or just enjoy time out and about with your loved ones.
- Seek a grief counselor or therapist, perhaps someone who understands the experience of child loss first hand.
- Spending time taking care of my loved ones, including our fur kids.
Online Forums and Magazines:
Glow in the Woods – an online community for ‘babylost parents’ who share their stories, and interact via an online discussion board
Still Standing Magazine – an online literary magazine for parents surviving child loss and infertility