|It's difficult to see, but our M.E.N.D. shirts have|
"Remembering Lydia Grace" embroidered on them
M.E.N.D. (Mommies Enduring Neonatal Death) has been an organization I have joined since we lost Lydia. Outside of family, I have received the most support from this Christian organization. Drew and I have both attended meetings and have found it to helpful and comforting. I enjoy talking with other mothers and not having the need to explain everything and how I feel. It's nice (in a strange sense) to hear other mothers talk about how life is a year...four years...eight years after the loss of their baby. No where have I felt as much support and understanding in a community. (Church should probably top the list here, but having been in church all my life, I have to say that I have not experienced the solidarity, support, shared experience, etc. with church members that I have felt with the women at M.E.N.D.).
Every year M.E.N.D. has a special event, a Walk to Remember. It was on Saturday, October 2nd. Over 500 participated in this event. Our family joined us to remember and celebrate our sweet baby. At the event, Rememberance tables were set out and I included Lydia's picture, her scrapbook, and her lamb.
|my youngest brother and I|
The service was very nice: prayer, songs, a message, recognition of the babies, and a balloon release. Every couple who had lost a baby were given an ornament. During the service, the name of each baby already in heaven was called. As the name was called the family came forward and hung their baby's ornament on the M.E.N.D. tree. I loved how every single baby was named by name. I feel like there cannot be enough remembering my little girl.
|Lydia's daddy hanging up her ornament|
|Lydia's ornament on the M.E.N.D. tree|
The service was concluded with a balloon release. every one received a balloon for each baby they had lost: pink for girls, blue for boys, white for miscarriages when the sex of the baby was unknown. We wrote on the balloons, then sang "Jesus Loves Me", tears preventing me to sing. Then we released our balloons.
|Balloons representing too many babies|