Other > Scrapbooking Your Baby
How do you create a scrapbook for a child you never got to know? Maybe you experienced a miscarriage and early pregnancy loss. Maybe your baby was stillborn. Maybe your baby’s short life was spent in the NICU unit of your hospital. Often when families experience the loss of a child there are very few, if any, mementos.
However, it can be very healing to create a scrapbook for your child. Your baby did exist! And no child is ever forgotten who has a family to remember him or her. No matter if you got to hold your baby or not, if you have photos or not, it is important to capture your baby’s brief life in a scrapbook similar to any other scrapbook a mother makes for her child.
If you experienced an early pregnancy loss:
If your baby was stillborn:
If you have few hospital mementos, it is still possible to create some items to recognize your child. You can request a “Certificate of Life” from SHARE (nationalshareoffice.com). You can put an obituary notice in the paper. You can make announcements to send to family and friends including your child’s name and birth and death dates. You can write a letter to your baby and put it in your scrapbook. Is there a particular poem, scripture or song that has special meaning to you? Do you feel inspired to write a poem or song for your baby?
Memorial Services or Graves:
You can scrapbook how you spend anniversary dates. Did you attend a Walk to Remember? Is there a special piece of jewelry your purchased to remind you of your angel? Is there a service project you have done in honor of your baby? What do you do to feel close to your angel? Is there a special song that has new meaning?
Suggestions for Layouts/ Journaling Prompts
Pregnancy Pages: include doctors visits, pregnancy tests, sonogram pictures, how you told your husband/partner, surprise? or long await +, morning sickness, cravings, weight gain, proud papa, mama, getting ready for baby, decorating the nursery, maternity clothes, 'old wives tales', baby showers, advice you were given, boy or girl?, telling grandparents.
Problems/Complications: these pages won't be happy happy but it can be very healing to write all this down. If you'd like to keep it more private, consider putting your journaling in an envelope in your scrapbook. This is a part of your baby's story and deserves to be told. Everyone's loss story is different but this might include testing, finding out, family reactions, hospital visits, nurses/doctors, what helped most, what didn't , friends and family, living children, waiting for baby, preterm labor, advice given, difficult decisions, sadness, grief, shock, anger, searching, regret, love, venting
Meeting Your Baby: You may or may not have had a chance to hold or see your baby but you may be able to include layouts of footprints, handprints, who your baby looked like, your thoughts of how you spent your time with your baby
Changed Forever: support groups, walk to remember, friends met, traditions, kindness projects, awareness, how has your life direction changed?
Support from friends and family: include cards, flowers, messages that you received
Inspirations: signs from your baby, symbols that remind you of your baby, did you buy a special item of jewelry that reminds you of your baby?, include poems, words to songs, inspirational quotes
Anniversaries and Special Dates: write down how you spend these special dates. Maybe start a tradition of writing a letter to your baby each year
I wish you peace as you create your baby’s scrapbook and remember his or her life. I dedicate this essay to my son, Gabriel, stillborn 5/10/02 at 21 weeks gestation. With love, Emily
Please also see information about Emily's wonderful presentation "Family Traditions: Making Memories that Include Your Baby"!
About the Author
PregnancyLossRibbons.com has memory and awareness items such as bracelets, car magnet ribbons, caps, shirts and scrapbooking supplies. Information includes how to include your baby in family traditions, symptoms of grief, how to scrapbook without photos and how to help someone who has experienced a loss. We do custom design requests and sell items in bulk for support groups. Emily and Nick run this site in memory of their child, Gabriel, stillborn 5/10/02 at 21 weeks gestation.