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This is a place for anyone who has felt the loss of a child. Treat this as a communication haven regardless of how or when you felt your loss. My definition of loss: miscarriage at any stage, still birth regardless of week gestation, infant death at any month, and loss of a child even if your child was all grown up. For me they all hold the same root of devestation. None are more profound or more "easily" dealt with than another.

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Saturday, December 13, 2008

Show And Tell - An Angel Tree

Christmas arrived three months after Emma died. I still hadn't resurfaced into the world. As many parents of angel children do - I emotionally boycotted the holiday. It was empty, devoid of cheer. I saw no reason to acknowledge the lifetime rituals and traditions ingrained in me. Just glancing at a storefront trampeled my heart with "Baby's First Christmas" onsies. I went inward.

Annually, my affection for Christmas crept back. As we welcomed another child, and then another - it seemed we were committed to celebrating - for who can deny a small child the delights of a first Christmas?

(random side note: Bear's first Christmas she suffered with a fever of 104.5 and threw up all over the floor of our neighbor's house. We came home -immediately)

However, I had one requirement. The holiday must include Emma, just like every other part of my life. My everyday had been permanantely altered by her absence, so this special day must be equally touched by her presence - her spirit.

We began buying Emma an ornament, every year. Some have her name on them - some have the year, but all have angels. Bear and The Comedian come home from school bearing bright primary colored home-made ornaments. I love them and will proudly display all the products of their brilliant little minds for as long as they bless our home.

But, I love the idea of my angel tree. Someday, when Bear is an architect who dabbles in fashion design on the side and The Comedian is hosting her own talk show, making people laugh every day, they will each take a box with them labeled: ornaments.

I will be left with a box too. Emma's Ornaments it will say. It will hold 25 years of angels, each unique, a representation of how her memory integrates into our family as time passes. I will have an Angel Tree.

Our collection - so far. Some are gifts. Some I chose. But, my favorite, by far, is the green angel below this text. J picked it out last year.

What are you showing and telling this week?


Kara said...

Beautiful, really quite beautiful!

Kristin said...

Those are beautiful. I also have a few angels on my tree that are dedicated to the babies I lost.

Cassandra said...

What a wonderful tribute. My favorites are the ones with the seashell skirts -- I've never seen that before!

Another Dreamer said...

Beautiful ornaments.

I love the idea of buying a angel every year. I recently bought an ornament for my loss. I'm not putting a tree up this year, so I can't put it out... but when I am ready to enjoy the Holidays again I will.

k@lakly said...

I love the idea of buying a special ornament each year. We bought two for Caleb last year but I hadn't thought about making it a tradition for him. Thanks for the inspiration.
Your angels are beautiful.

Wishing 4 One said...

More than beautiful...what a great thing to do for emma. My mother loves angels and uses them as a reminder of her my mother, my Oma who passed away in 2005. She took all her angels that she bought for her and made an angel garden in tribute to her. Thanks so much for sharing....

'Murgdan' said...

So sweet. What a beautiful idea.

Cara said...

Cassandra - the seashell skirts are from a sweet little shop in Chatham, Cape Cod.

They make a new one every year and when we buy them, the proceeds go to a charity. Win-win...yes?

We bought Emma's 08 ornament last night. So gorgeous. I'll post later.

Sam said...

oh what a lovely way to remember Emma. The ornaments are just lovely.

Martha said...

That is lovely, how appropriate for Angel Emma. Thank you, Cara.

Michelle said...

That is so beautiful!

battynurse said...

Beautiful. I know what you mean about checking out on the holidays. The angels though are a great way to remember and honor Emma.

CLC said...

Beautiful ornaments, and great idea. My nieces and nephews surprised me today with many angel ornaments, so I think we will always have an angel tree now too.

WiseGuy said...

So beautiful...not just the ornaments, but also the underlying thought!

JamieD said...

What beautiful ornaments and a beautiful way of celebrating with Emma. I love them!

Mrs Woggie said...

So lovely Cara. My cousin's do this for their mother who passed away when they were only 4,3 and 18 months old. They collect little elephants for her.

I'm looking forward to seeing this years ornament.

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