Ronald Regan made it official 1988 with the following proclaimation:
Each year, approximately a million pregnancies in the U.S. end in miscarriage,
stillbirth or the death of the newborn child. National observance of
Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month offers us the opportunity
to increase our understanding of the great tragedy involved in the deaths
of unborn and newborn babies. It also enables us to consider how, as
individuals and communities, we can meet the needs of bereaved parents
and family members on work to prevent causes of these problems.
Health care professionals recognize that trends of recent years, such
as smaller family size and postponement of childbearing, adds another
dimension of poignancy to the grief of parents who have lost infants.
More than 700 local, national and international support groups are supplying
programs and strategies designed to help parents cope with their loss.
Parents who have suffered their own losses, health care professionals
and specially trained hospital staff members are helping newly bereaved
parents deal constructively with loss...
The Congress, by Senate Joint Resolution 314, has designated the month
of October, as "Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month"
and authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation in
observance of this month.
NOW, THEREFORE, I RONALD REAGAN, President of the United States of
America, do hereby proclaim the month of October as Pregnancy and Infant
Loss Awareness Month. I call upon the people of the United States to
observe this month with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-fifth day
of October in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-eight
and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred
United States of America
And each state governor has been petitioned to make October 15th the
official day of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness. The following website
offers state proclamation updates and can tell you if your governor has
heard you or not:
Each of the following websites offer information and opinions about why
this awareness is so important. Some offer ribbon banners that you can
add to your own site to raise awareness. And if you dig deeper into each
of the following, you'll find that the creators of the sites are themselves
bereaved parents who have personal missions for raising this awareness.
If you are a bereaved parent yourself, chances are you have encountered
at least one friend or family member who has tried to tell you to "get
over it" in one way or another. It is rare for people who haven't
suffered the effects of this kind of sudden death to understand that your
world is different forever. They often don't understand why you aren't
over it. They don't understand why you are still affected/effected by
it years later. The events happening around Pregnancy and Infant Loss
month and day are resources for you to find renewal, to look into the
eyes of folks who understand your commitment to this awareness, to find
support you might not be getting from family of origin or friends. Check
it out. Participate if you can. Do whatever you need to do.
Kara L.C. Jones is a founder of KotaPress and a grieving mother who lost
her first born son on March 11, 1999 at 4:47 p.m. She works toward healing
by doing her own writing and offering poetry therapy consults to other
bereaved parents. If you wish to contact her, please send email to firstname.lastname@example.org