Friday, March 13, 2009

From hadquarters

Every little stitch…..

How long does it take to make a memory? A
moment? A lifetime? Sometimes the moment IS the
lifetime and that becomes the memory to grasp.

The young mother sat in the rocking chair holding
her precious daughter in her arms. The tiny
infant was wrapped in a soft, pale pink blanket
with a shell stitch. As the mother rocked her
child, she sang the song that mothers have sung
for generations…”Lullaby and goodnight…” At the
same time, she traced the tiny features on baby
Danielle’s face and hands -- perfect fingers,
tiny button nose, rosy mouth that looked like she
had been kissed by an angel. Eyes closed,
motionless, silent. Tears rolled down the
mother’s cheeks as she sang and rocked and looked
at her newborn daughter - the daughter she had
anticipated and loved before she was even conceived.

She expected to be rocking her baby in her newly
decorated nursery, not a funeral home. She
expected to be welcoming family and friends to
meet little Danielle, not greeting them at her
wake. She expected to be choosing between
onesies and a full layette of pink outfits
perfect for a petite newborn princess. None of this was to be.

Instead, she held her daughter whose dreams would
not be fulfilled. Her daughter whose life ended
before it even began. Her daughter would never
wear those frilly dresses and bonnets. Her
daughter was swaddled in a blanket hand made by
another mother…perhaps a mother who knew the
heartbreak of loss. She noticed a small blue and
white tag sewn inside the blanket – Project
Linus. How kind that someone she had never met
would take the time to make such a beautiful
blanket, the only one Danielle would ever know.

When it was time to say the final goodbye to
Danielle, the mother chose to keep the blanket –
the only thing her daughter had ever touched. It
would become one of her most cherished
possessions, the only thing she would have left besides her memory.

Thanks to the generosity of Project Linus
volunteers, Hansen Mortuary in Phoenix, Arizona
provides bereavement blankets for families whose
dreams have been shattered with the death of
their child. The families who received these
blankets are moved beyond words to have one
thing, one precious thing, to keep that once held their baby.

To the volunteers who make these special
blankets, you have your own story as to why you
choose this particular mission. Many of you have
losses of your own or are close to someone who
has experienced this unique grief. For some of
you, this is your way of paying it
forward. Thank you for the humble healing
mission you have chosen. You will never know the
depth and breadth of your gift.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

This story is so sweet and tender. It made me cry. What a gift to give to a family that has lost so much. A cherished memory of holding their child in one of these gifted blankets. I can't imagine the loss these parents feel. I have 8 children and would hate to loose one of them. I can't imagine the pain. I am sure having a blanket to hold on to would be a comfort through all of the pain. Everyone who donates their time and talents to provide a blanket of comfort is in the service of God our Father. When we serve others we are serving God.

4:56 PM  

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