May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face, and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again, May God hold you in the palm of His hand.
-Irish Blessing

Sunday, December 11, 2011

12 Days of Christmas With You in Heaven

Over the last eight years, our family has begun many Christmas traditions to honor our son Wyatt, which we will continue this year with the addition of our son, Eli. The first Christmas after Wyatt's passing we ordered special Winnie the Pooh ornaments through Lenox which bear Wyatt's name and his birth year.
We purchased one for ourselves and one for each family within our immediate family to hang on their Christmas trees in his remembrance each holiday season. (Eli's ornaments have been ordered for this Christmas.) Some families even display theirs year round. The ornaments serve a dual purpose, to remind our families of our missing sons and to remind them of our ongoing grief which is especially poignant during the holiday season. For the years of 2003 and 2011 they also served and will serve as holiday gifts to the families because of the cost involved.

Our second or third Christmas after Wyatt's birth brought healing and crafts. This time we poured our hearts into a very special memorial, a homemade stocking. We purchased a Bucilla felt stocking kit. My husband and I cut, embroidered, stuffed and sequined each tiny detail into this beautiful stocking (every single piece of felt is hand cut and embroidered onto the stocking from the tallest tree to the tiniest paw). No sewing skills are necessary prior to beginning this project but it is quite time intensive and there is a slight learning curve if you are not familiar with embroidery. I figure if my husband can do it, anyone can.

We purchased and began Eli's stocking last year while I was pregnant with him but before his Potter's Syndrome diagnosis. After the diagnosis, it was packed away. Here is a picture of the progress we made.

I hope to finish Eli's stocking before this Christmas Eve and have it look like this with Eli's name embroidered on the banner instead of "Santa's Sweets". All our children's stockings are hung proudly in our living room each holiday season though sadly two will always remain empty.

Every year since Wyatt's birth we have participated in a giving program such as the Salvation Army's Angel Tree and chosen an anonymous boy about Wyatt's age to purchase and donate a gift for. This year we will do the same for Eli too. We would have spent much more money and time on Christmas for Wyatt and Eli if they were here so it feels good to honor that and them by donating something for another child their age. It also serves as an annual reminder of how much they would have grown and what we have missed. It is a gift of heart and a time of reflection.

We also purchase the boys small gifts to leave at the grave for Christmas and place a small decorated Christmas tree at the gravesite. When we began doing this we would carefully wrap a string of battery powered Christmas lights in plastic and take them out to the cemetery Christmas Eve. Last year however, dawned a new age of Christmas lights for us with an LED battery powered set. We found the set still fully lit days after Christmas so this year our boys will have a lighted tree for much longer!

These holiday ideas are inspired by our sons, Wyatt and Eli, imperfectly formed and lost due to Potter's Syndrome but perfectly loved and remembered by our family which includes three beautiful rainbow girls born in between. My blog is the story I began writing while carrying Eli to term which details my Potter's Syndrome journey beginning with Wyatt and our life beyond.

1 comment:


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...