Whenever I’ve written here or on Facebook about pregnancy loss, I’ve heard a clear request for more support for Pagans experiencing loss, specifically support that isn’t overwhelmingly Christian in language and ideas. I think The Amethyst Network is one organization that can help. Their mission is to provide doula support and “to break the social taboo surrounding talking about miscarriage, and to support, advocate, educate, comfort, and share our stories of loss, grief, and hope.”
I find it promising that they have Paganism on their Spiritual Journey page, even though they don’t have anything to share about Paganism yet (they’re a pretty new organization so most of these sections are still blank).
So I decided to work on getting listed with The Amethyst Network as a loss doula, via their Ruby Path for people who already have doula training (did you know I’ve trained as a birth doula and an abortion doula?). My first step was reading After Miscarriage, which is a book full of useful information especially for people who have endured multiple miscarriages and want answers.
Today I want to share some of the ideas the book offers for ritualizing a loss or memorializing the baby. It might feel right to:
- Name the baby
- Get a special piece of jewelry, perhaps with the baby’s birthstone
- Plant a tree or other plant (trees are a popular idea, but consider what kind of gardener you are and how you’ll feel if your plant doesn’t thrive)
- Write a poem or a prayer or the story of your pregnancy
- Envision your baby as a person
- Donate to a charity, especially one that helps mothers or babies
- Get a tattoo
- Release balloons
- Light a candle
- Name a star
- Keep ultrasound pictures somewhere special
Or maybe none of these feels right. In many cases memorializing the baby won’t make sense and that’s ok too.
If you like what The Amethyst Network is doing, consider donating to the Indigogo fundraiser campaign they’re running for the next week. With this kind of work, a little bit of money can go a long way.
PS. Maybe you already realize that our own Molly is a founding member of The Amethyst Network, but she doesn’t know I’m writing this.