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5 Ways to Support a Friend Who Lost Their Baby

5 Ways to Support a Friend Who Lost Their Baby

“My friend just lost a baby and I’m at a loss of what to do or say. How can I be a support during this time? I’m often asked this question by caring friends and family members who know someone who has recently lost their precious baby. If you’re asking yourself this same question today I want to start by saying thank you. Just the fact that you’d ask shows that you truly care. The loss of a child is one of the deepest griefs to face and one of the most complicated to respond to. In those first few months after losing my newborn son I could hardly imagine what I needed, let alone articulate it to someone else. I’m so grateful for people like you who met us where we were at when we needed it the most. While there is no “one size fits all” approach, there were several things that my husband and I found especially helpful as we processed the loss of our newborn son. Don’t be afraid to talk about the baby. I love it when people ask me about Ethan, or when they say his name out loud. Simply start by saying, “I’d love to hear more about [baby’s name] sometime” and be prepared to hear as much or as little as they feel comfortable sharing. Your loved one hasn’t forgotten their child, not even for a moment, and hearing or speaking their name is one of the greatest gifts a bereaved parent can receive. Consider remembering their baby’s legacy alongside them by joining them at Forever Footprints’ Walk to Remember or...

Friendships and Loss

I will never forget the first time I felt it. I was sitting in a room full of women, who were all laughing, talking, complaining about their husbands, bragging about their children. It was five months after my son Joseph had died, and I thought I could do it. I thought I could join the world again. I wanted to feel normal. But sitting in that room—with a newly formed women’s group—I never felt so alone in my entire life. The sounds all became one, like a constant buzzing. My hands started to sweat. My heart started to pound. And I ran for the door. I ran from new friendships and I ran from my old friendships. I isolated myself from those who had children and babies. I couldn’t face my pregnant friends, because I was a reminder to them of what could go wrong. My friends’ worlds were moving forward, and my life felt as if it was standing still. I didn’t know how to be anyone’s friend. I was different. I had held my son and watched him take his last breaths. I watched his casket being put in the ground. I had gone home to leaking breasts full of his milk, an empty nursery, and a broken heart. And my friends would never understand that.     As the months after Joseph’s death turned into years, and I sought the help of support groups and private therapy to deal with my grief, I tried to repair old friendships and begin new ones. I started to accept this was the new me. And I began to see,...

A Mother’s Love

In October of 2009 we were shocked to learn that we were expecting triplet boys. The news brought the eventuality of bedrest, NICU, and the like. In spite of all the risks associated with a multiple pregnancy, we never even considered the possibility of a loss. We were in good hands, we were being watched carefully, and there was no reason to believe that something would go wrong. Until it did. At 32 weeks and 5 days, I went in for a routine check, and we were given the devastating news that Baby B’s heart had stop beating. In an instant our life changed. We went from anticipating the arrival of three beautiful boys, to mourning the loss of one, and praying like mad for the other two. Later that same day, all three boys had to be delivered. It was the most bittersweet moment of our lives. Hearing Adler and Cameron cry and seeing their tiny pink bodies was a joy, but feeling Boe being pulled from my body silent and still was heartbreaking. So many emotions and thoughts ran through my mind. How could the other two be here, be alive, and not Boe? How could we have made it this far for this to be the result? In the days that followed, we were so fortunate to be surrounded by family and friends-people who were there for us in our darkest days. We were also fortunate to be provided with amazing resources to aid in the grieving process. How would we parent the beautiful daughter we already had at home? How would we parent Boe’s surviving...

Thank you to our Memory Box Volunteers

Several years ago, Forever Footprints learned that families at many Orange County hospitals did not receive memory boxes. Worse yet, we heard stories of families being sent home with their baby’s precious memories in empty milk containers, torn paper bags, or used boxes. We immediately went into action, purchasing memory boxes and supplies. And an amazing group of volunteers has lovingly decorated more than 400 memory boxes that have gone directly to families who have had a baby die in pregnancy or infancy. Erin, Eve, Becca, Lindsay, we are so grateful for your dedication and love to Forever Footprints and all the families we serve. Thank you for all you do. If you would like to make a donation toward our memory box program, please visit Our Donation Website or email kvonrotz@foreverfootprints.org. We are in need of supplies to continue this program and would be so grateful for your financial...

Forever Footprints Programs

Support Programs Each day, hour, and even minute, a member of your community experiences a loss of a baby. Sadly, most areas are greatly lacking the support and assistance these parents, siblings, grandparents, and friends need in dealing with their heartache. Forever Footprints is working each day to fill that gap. Through our various programs, we strive to connect these hurting families to support that will offer them understanding and aid as they navigate through the journey ahead of them. Forever Footprints Support Groups The Balancing Life & Loss: Parenting After Loss Group is a free support group that addresses the needs of bereaved parents who, after a tragic loss, need to continue living and parenting their surviving children. The Coping With Loss: Helping Families With The Loss Of A Child Through Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and Early Infancy Group is a free support group for bereaved parents and families who have experienced the loss of a child and need a place to help process their  experience and be able to heal. Education and Support Books Program Our Education and Support Book Program allows us to donate books to families and hospitals. We offer several books specifically for mothers, fathers, grandparents and children or siblings. Journey to Remember Program The Journey to Remember Program is a perinatal comfort care program created to provide a safe and nurturing environment for families who wish to carry to term despite a life-limiting or fatal diagnosis. We provide sensitive care facilitated by a labor and delivery nurse trained in bereavement with personal experience in perinatal loss during the pregnancy, delivery, and follow up bereavement support...

Paloma Comfort Care

Ten years ago we were given the news that our firstborn son had Alobar Holoprosencephaly. As my husband and I sat in a dark ultrasound room, the doctor explained to us that our baby had no brain and would not survive. He scribbled the long diagnosis on a piece of paper, and told us to follow up with our regular OB. The days and weeks that followed are painful and a blur. We had so many questions—and no answers. We desperately needed support—and there was none. We needed someone to help us navigate this heart-breaking time—yet we were alone. Joseph was born on July 8, 2004. We got to hold our son for the short time he lived. And then we had to say goodbye. I cofounded Forever Footprints, formerly OC Walk to Remember, after Joseph’s death. And there has been so much support given to families who have faced a pregnancy loss or infant death. But in the past ten years, I’ve also met many families like me who were given the news that their unborn baby had a life-threatening or life-limiting condition, and more support was needed. The Board of Directors of Forever Footprints committed to create support for families who receive such a diagnosis. It began with a meeting one year ago with UC Irvine Medical Center in Orange. Within six months a framework was in place, and the Paloma Comfort Care program was born. The program helps such families on their journey from pregnancy to birth, and after birth in the Labor and Delivery Unit, Post-Partum Unit or Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). It promotes...