Editor's note: October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, and though we often spend time on this blog highlighting new, interesting, or funny things your library can do for you, we thought we'd also take a minute to show that the library has resources to help you in hard times. Our hearts go out to those coping with these challenges in their lives.
During my time as a librarian I have experienced 7 years of secondary infertility and 4 heartbreaking miscarriages. The thing that I discovered is that most people have either experienced a miscarriage themselves or they know someone who has and yet, at the time, I felt utterly alone. When I decided to look for books to help me heal emotionally and spiritually, I didn’t want books that dealt with the medical reasons behind these kinds of losses. I wanted something that would let me know that the emotions I was feeling were normal and that other women had experienced this and survived.
Here are some books and DVDs that helped me and by sharing them I’m hoping that they just might be able to help someone else.
INFERTILITY: HEALTH, HOPE & HEALING
by Kerstin Daynes
Kerstin Daynes experienced firsthand the heartbreak of finding out she was infertile. In this book she offers hope to other couples facing this trial through sharing many of her own personal experiences and helping to guide the reader through the unique ups and downs of grief associated with infertility.
FOR THEY SHALL BE COMFORTED: GRIEVING THE LOSS OF A CHILD
by Camille Whiting
The author shares her own experience of losing two children and takes the reader through her journey of anger, despair and guilt to being able to heal and find peace. This book comes from an LDS perspective and is able to offer hope to those in similar circumstances. There is also good advice for friends and family on how to best help those who are grieving.
JOY COMETH IN THE MORNING: A STORY OF HEALING FROM THE LOSS OF A CHILD
by Fran C. Hafen
This is a very inspiring and uplifting book. Losing a child is excruciatingly painful, but this book helps the reader understand that those feelings are okay and even normal and it doesn’t mean that you lack faith. Again, this is written from an LDS perspective and it shows how grief can evolve into healing through the gospel.
EMPTY ARMS: COPING WITH MISCARRIAGE, STILLBIRTH, AND INFANT DEATH; SURVING THE FIRST HOURS AND BEYOND
by Sherokee Ilse
I actually didn’t read this book as I was experiencing my own struggle, but it would have been very helpful. It offers guidance on the decisions that have to be made after the death of a baby. Another very helpful part of this book is how to handle anniversaries, holidays and the birth of other babies in the parents’ close circle. Each of these things can bring on a whole new wave of grief and often times it is very unexpected.
THIS THING CALLED GRIEF: NEW UNDERSTANDINGS OF LOSS
by Thomas M. Ellis
This book is not specific to the loss of a child, but it does an excellent job of walking you through the crazy ups and downs of grief.
FOOTPRINTS ON OUR HEARTS: HOW TO COPE AFTER A MISCARRIAGE, STILLBIRTH OR NEWBORN DEATH
by Charity Hamilton
When a baby dies the agony can be complex and intense. You may experience misplaced guilt, hurt and deep sorrow. Babies aren’t supposed to die and this DVD shows ways to cope with the many feelings you will have as you grieve during the days and weeks that follow such a loss. Mothers and fathers who have suffered a loss share words of hope, understanding and encouragement for the future.
AT A LOSS FOR WORDS: HOW TO HELP THOSE YOU CARE FOR IN A MISCARRIAGE, STILLBIRTH OR NEWBORN DEATH EXPERIENCE
by Charity Hamilton
One of the hardest things to figure out is what to say or do when someone close to you experiences a loss. This DVD teaches you how to help those you care about if they experience a miscarriage, stillbirth or newborn death.
OTHER GOOD BOOKS
Here are some more good books that were very helpful to me. Unfortunately they are no longer in the library catalog, but you may want to find a way to read them if you are looking for more books on the subject.
MISCARRIAGE: WOMEN SHARING FROM THE HEART by Marie Allen and Shelly Marks
GONE TOO SOON by Serri Devashrayee Wittwer
LOST CHILDREN: COPING WITH MISCARRIAGE FOR LATTER-DAY SAINTS by Rachelle.J. Christensen