October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance month. October 15 is the actual remembrance day, and in honor of our little Preslie we participated in "A Walk to Remember". Two months ago I was searching on the Internet to see if there were any walks going on in Michigan. I stumbled across "A Walk to Remember" in Lowell, Michigan. I immediately called Chris and asked him if he would want to participate this year. Of course he did! I right then and there registered, and paid our fees. I also volunteered us to help out, if needed.
We woke up this morning at 6:30am and got ready to go. The weather outside was rainy and gloomy. The drive was an hour, and when we got there the weather was still no different. Chris and I had the opportunity to work at the name badge table. They had such a neat system for everyone. You would write your name,and then the name of the baby that has passed. If it was your baby you would put a star sticker with a corresponding color signifying whether it was a boy, girl, or unknown. If you were walking for someone else's baby you would put a corresponding sticker only it would be a circle. The amount of parents and supporters were incredible. I couldn't help but feel my heart break for all of the families, and more especially the families with multiple losses.
We were able to receive these t-shirts that had all the baby's names listed on the back.
After everyone had a name badge and had registered, we headed over to a tented area where we were honored to hear from Michigan State Representative Kevin Green. He told us his story of his precious daughter Skyler, who was born into heaven 2 years ago. He talked of his grief, and how being a Dad he felt like he needed to fix the situation. However, he knew that there was nothing he could do. His cute family has a one year old Elliot and another baby girl on the way. As a grieving Dad in his position he was able to pass funding in Michigan for Stillbirth research. I feel so grateful we were able to hear from him.
After hearing from the Representative, we were handed out balloons and a marker to write something on it.
We then carried our balloons a short way through the park into this beautiful open area by a huge pond. The many many balloons brought tears to my eyes, to think of all the little babies that had been lost.
When everyone arrived at the destination all the precious angel babies names were read off one by one. When a baby's name was announced the family and friends would release their balloon or balloons. Right when the balloons started to fly, the sun starting to shine through the clouds. What a great tender mercy that was. When Preslie's name was read I couldn't help but cry. Watching her little pink balloon fly up towards the heavens was a lot more emotional then I had anticipated. I wanted to keep my balloon. I wanted Preslie to be with us here on earth. We watched her balloon fly higher and higher until it disappeared into the clouds.
Waiting to release balloons
Preslie's balloon taking flight
Climbing higher and higher
After the balloon release we walked a short 1/2 mile to a bridge. We walked the steps our children will never take, we walked for them today.
We walked back to the car feeling the love and loss we have for our precious daughter, and the gratitude we have that we were able to have her as long as we did. We are so grateful that we were able to take part in something to remember all the little babies gone too soon. For the opportunity to come together as parents and family, and to see that we are not alone. We were all touched and blessed by angels.