In October of 1988, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed October as National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. He said:
"When a child loses his parent, they are called an orphan. When a spouse loses her or his partner, they are called a widow or widower. When parents lose their child, there isn't a words to describe them. This month recognizes the loss so many parents experience across the United States and the world. It is also meant to inform and provide resources for parents who have lost children due to miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, molar pregnancy, stillbirths, birth defects, SIDS, and other causes."
How fitting that October is also Respect Life month.
October 15th has become known as "Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day" and today, people all over the world will be lighting a candle at 7:00pm to commemorate their lost loved ones. The founders of the day envisioned a day to support, educate, and celebrate about loss and love.
This is the first year I will celebrate this day and I will be busy running errands for most of it. Fortunately, my errands bring me to a Catholic church at precisely 7:00pm. And I will light a candle for our little Matthew.... and one more in memory of the beautiful children lost to our family and friends, but safe in the arms of Jesus.“Every year on October 15 the nation quietly pauses to remember lost babies. It’s a day that most people don’t even know about. You won’t find it marked on any calendar when you buy it in a store, or find cards for the occasion in even a tiny corner of Hallmark, but it’s an important day for those of us who have lost babies. The day has existed since President Ronald Reagan signed a proclamation in 1988 and serves to, among other things, “inform and educate the public about pregnancy and infant loss.”A tradition on this day is that at 7:00 pm in each time zone a Wave of Light will move across the country, and the world. All families who have lost a baby either by pregnancy or infant death should light a candle and leave it burning for at least one hour. The wave of light will serve as a reminder that there are those of us who still remember – and those who have not suffered a loss pause to surround us in love.