This weekend I have been busy working on the Angel Tree and it has been a very healing process. As I headed into the weekend, I had a list of things to get started on. I first had to find an angel tree topper. Check. Then buy crafts and supplies. Check and check.
I also was on the lookout for various items that reminded the moms of their children (e.g., bear, butterfly, angel, feathers, stars, hearts). I ended up finding a lot of these items that fit the bill perfectly. I was happy to find these because it will make these ornaments that much more special to my angel mamas. Another check.
Then while out shopping for ornaments at Target, I noticed several moms out shopping with their babies. After you’ve lost your baby, you notice babies are all around you. My mind automatically wondered what that would have felt like – – being out shopping for holiday decorations with my newborn. But here I was buying ornaments for my son and his friends who have been lost. The stark contrast between those moms and myself – two moms on polar opposites of the spectrum during this holiday, triggered a deep feeling of sadness inside of me.
( When I decided to write a blog, I told myself I would be real and true to my feelings, whether real meant writing about my feelings of happiness, sadness, pain, guilt, joy, or anything in between. So I share this with you because it is part of my story).
As I was debating over which of the two giraffe ornaments to purchase, I overheard another mom talking with her 3 or 4 year old daughter about which princess ornament she wanted. The way the mom talked with her daughter was so loving, caring and patient. I could tell she was just…content. Content to just simply be present with her daughter. Witnessing this interaction didn’t make me sad – – it actually made me happy and relieved. I was relieved that I wasn’t listening to a mom who was impatient, short, or mean to her child. When I witness that type of interaction, I try not to judge, but, I don’t think I could have taken that type of interaction at that moment. I was pleasantly surprised.
I paid for my items, made my way home and got started on the ornaments. Ever since I was a child, I loved to craft. I have always found crafting to be a calming process. As soon as I started making the ornaments, I felt a sense of peace. While I may not be able to go out and buy ornaments with my son, I was making these ornaments in memory of my son and all of his angel friends. I know how much these ornaments will mean to their moms. And knowing that gave me so much strength and energy. I was doing something that mattered to others.
I’ve made about 25 ornaments in two days. And it was an absolute pleasure to make them. At about 5 o’clock today we decided to put up the tree. The lights went on first with the angel tree topper.
Once the lights were on, we then started putting the ornaments up one by one. Here is Jensen’s ornament.
Here is his friend Theo’s ornament.
And Aria Noelle’s ornament.
And Janelle-Nicole’s ornament.
Putting them on the tree was powerful and beautiful. I wish I would have thought about finding an organization willing to put this tree up in a public place somewhere. I think it would be such a beautiful thing for others to see all of these names and honor their memory. We put all of the ornaments that we made so far up on the tree. You can find all of the ornaments in the gallery. I am just so humbled to be able to honor and remember these babies and children this holiday season. They are so loved.