I am inspired to give because Sweet Grace Ministries gives with a huge heart! Sweet Grace Ministries isn't your average non-profit. They provide support for the couples who are grieving the loss of their baby. They give 100% to see those families don't go home empty handed, broken hearted yes but the love that goes into the baskets helps provide a small light of comfort. It also opens the door to a whole new family waiting at support group with open arms.
Review from #MyGivingStory
6 babies, 4 in Heaven 2 in our arms!
From the time that my husband and I got married we wanted to start a family. After 7 years of waiting and wondering if we would ever have kids we got our first positive pregnancy test. We were so excited. When we went to the doctors to confirm the pregnancy we were told that I was in the process of having a miscarriage. We were told that it is very common in the first few weeks and everything was fine. We were devastated. However we decided to try again. With in the next 6 months we miscarried 2 more babies. I didn't know what to do.
When we found out for the 4th time that we were pregnant we were scared! We went to extra appointments did every thing they told us to do but when we were 30 weeks we found out that we had lost our sweet Abby!
This was when we were introduced to Sweet Grace Ministries. I was sent to the hospital to deliver. The nurses brought in a basket filled with all kinds of thoughtful items to help us during this hard time. It also helped realize that we were not alone. I will forever be grateful for everything that was in the basket, but especially a stuffed pink bear that I was able to hold. My arms were so empty with out my baby but I could hold onto this little bear and it helped me. There was also information that led us to a support group with other couples just like us. The love we received when we walked into that room was amazing. I don't know where I would be with out my Sweet Grace Family.
My story doesn't end here. Our lives go on day by day. We continue to love and support each other in our losses and everything else in our lives because we are a family. They were there for us as my husband and I went on to have 2 amazing rainbow babies. So when people ask my 'How many kids do you have' I tell them 6! 4 in Heaven 2 in our arms.
Review from #MyGivingStory
Going Home Empty Handed
For most people, getting a positive pregnancy test fills them with joy and excitement. Right away you start thinking about whether that new bundle of joy will be a boy or a girl. You and your significant other start tossing around names and nursery colors. You nickname the baby 'bean' or 'squishy' or some silly little thing that floods your heart with warmth each time you say it. You fall completely in love with a tiny little being that you will not meet for another 9 months.
For me and my Sweet Grace Ministries family, it is a quite different experience. We are family of Mommas and Daddies who never got to take that little baby we loved so much home. Our stories are all different, yet they are all the same. Loss. Deep, deep loss.
My story is mild compared to some of the ones shared at Sweet Grace's monthly support group. I lost my first three pregnancies in the first trimester. For me a positive pregnancy test means calling doctors, ordering medicine, weekly doctor appoints, extra ultrasounds, high risk doctors and an obscene number of blood draws. There is not the floating joy that most people feel. There is worry. There are walls built. There is fear. Fear that you will not get to bring this baby home from the hospital either. That you will leave empty. Empty handed. Empty hearted.
I traveled my journey of losses alone. I did not know about Sweet Grace until I was pregnant with my fourth pregnancy, my first successful one. Through a friend's loss of her precious baby boy just shy of 20 weeks gestation, I started following Sweet Grace Ministries on Facebook. So when my mom called me and told me that my brother and his girlfriend had lost my nephew full term, I reached out to them. I'm not sure how to explain the pain I feel as aunt who lost her precious nephew before she even got to meet him. I cannot fully explain what it is like sitting in a dark delivery room all day watching your baby brother and his girlfriend prepare to deliver their first child knowing they will go home empty handed. I'm not sure how to explain what it is like to see a tiny little casket with a tiny spray of flowers get lowered into a tiny hole in the ground. As a family, we had huge holes punched through our hearts. Where do we go from here? How can we possible go on after such great loss? I'm not sure I could have answered these questions if it was not for Sweet Grace Ministries.
Sweet Grace offered us a photographer to come to the hospital and take pictures of sweet baby Axel. It is the best gift anyone could have given us. We have beautiful, professional portraits of my nephew to cherish and remember him by. When the photographer came, she also brought a basket that Sweet Grace gives to parents who are leaving the hospital empty handed. It included some books on the loss of a baby, a soothing candle and tea, a precious handmade blanket and hat, a lovely remembrance bracelet (one for baby and Momma) and a plush teddy bear among other things to help honor the precious baby that never made it home.
Sweet Grace not only gives baskets and photography, they offer grief doulas, miscarriage bags, resources, and most importantly they offer a family. A family of other parents who have experienced miscarriage, still birth and neonatal death. A family who meets once a month to be raw with one another. To share our grief with people who truly understand. To share our deepest fears and thoughts. To carry a little piece of each other's pain. A family to walk this journey of grief with.
Sweet Grace Ministries is a nonprofit that I wish did not have to exist, but I am so glad it does.
You can check out Sweet Grace at http://sweetgraceministries.com/ to learn more about what they provide, to see their heart, and to hear the story of how Sweet Grace was started.
Review from #MyGivingStory