October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. We’ve been pretty open about our story of losing Alexander from the very beginning. This week, I’ve shared statistics and the causes that we are supporting in Alexander’s memory. In addition to those things, and perhaps more than anything else, we want to start the conversation.
When you’re a parent, you want nothing more than to talk about your kids. That doesn’t go away when something terrible happens. We don’t get to walk around the neighborhood pushing Alexander in a stroller. We only have a handful of precious photos from the day we got to spend with him. But we love him more than anything, and we miss him every single day. And we still want to talk about him.
We also want to empower other people to talk about Alexander and to ask us about Alexander. We want to share our story in hopes of helping others. Because while we would never in a million years wish this on anyone, we know that it will happen.
So, in order to raise awareness for pregnancy and infant loss and to share our story, we made some wristbands. Because while we can’t push Alexander around the neighborhood in a stroller and talk about him, we can walk around wearing our matching wristbands in hopes of raising awareness and sharing our story.
We’ve been waiting (impatiently) for the arrival of our wristbands for the past week, and they finally arrived last night. Just in time for a full and heavy week of milestones. So, here we are with 400 of these babies. And we can’t wait to start seeing them on people’s wrists. We can’t wait to continue sharing our story, carrying Alexander in our hearts and on our wrists.
Each wristband says “#AlexanderScott / Pregnancy & Infant Loss” on the outside. The inside says, “Read our story at erinhaligowski.wordpress.com.” It is our hope that the wristbands might also lead people to this blog so that they can read more about Alexander and gain more awareness about pregnancy and infant loss.
Scott, being the amazing dad that he is, decided almost immediately that he will always wear two wristbands. That way, he will always have one to keep and one to give away if he gets a chance to share our story and talk about Alexander. (Maybe he can start by heading back to Great Clips and giving one to the woman who cut his hair last week.) He is seriously the best dad to Alexander. He doesn’t care that the colors for pregnancy and infant loss awareness are girly. He just wants to talk about his son.
I may not wear two, but you can bet I’ll be keeping a few in my car, and at my desk at work, and in other random places where they can be passed along and given away.
We’ve already started handing them out. Last night as we walked Hiro through the neighborhood, we stopped by some friends’ house and dropped some off for the whole family. Less than an hour later, I got this picture in a text message. Oh. My. Heart.
Alexander has taught us so much about community and friendship in the past three months. And this right here is proof. Friendships we had have been strengthened. New friendships have formed in surprising and wonderful ways. We are so thankful for folks like these who are walking alongside us through every bit of our grief, inviting us with intentionality, and carrying us through prayer and presence.
We can’t wait to see more pictures of people wearing Alexander’s wristbands. We can’t wait to share our story, and to see Alexander continue to inspire people through his short life.
We’ll have them at Alexander’s memorial service this Sunday, and we’d love to find ways to get them on the arms of friends all over the country.