Thursday, November 11, 2010

Story of HOPE

Jessica ~ Artist 
Riley - Miscarried 2/11/10  
Peyton - Miscarried 8/19/10
Riley was a missed miscarriage at 6 weeks and Peyton was a missed miscarriage at 10 weeks.  In order to work through my grief I began creating art to help others remember their angels.  It has helped me see my children all around me.  Seeing their names brings them further into my life.  This has helped me to process my grief and to understand that hiding my feelings was never going to help me. 
My journey through grief was just that . . . a journey.  Creating art helped to calm me and to learn to live with the sadness in a healthy way.  Each time I create a piece for my angels I feel closer to them and it calms me to think that, as I create art for others to remember their angels, it may help them feel closer to their angels.  
My inspiration came slowly as I realized ~ while reading other women's blogs ~ that mothers LOVED to see their babies names.  There were pictures all over their blogs of creative ways that other baby loss mommas wrote their child’s name(s). So with that in mind and the fact that doves remind me of my angels I created "Heaven's Doves" as a free memorial site for moms to request pictures for their babies.  While this is simplistic in nature it is a pretty reminder that our children are above us, watching us, free from all pain and full of love!  More recently, I created a store called "Too Beautiful for Earth: Memorial Art."  It contains art for those that have lost a child.  I have a variety of custom items.  My goal is to help bring peace to others' lives through their loss in whatever way that I can whether it be a free dove, picture or artwork.  
I never thought that I would be so outward about my loss.  While I am not a quiet person  by nature ~ miscarriage is a touchy subject.  When I lost Riley I was not so vocal about it, but when I lost Peyton it was like I started grieving both of them.  I was doubly filled with pain and after realizing so many other women had blogs about their journey I started blogging away.  I never would have thought I could freely be so honest about my feelings.  I never thought I would meet so many wonderful women.  I never thought that I would start creating art for people that had lost their children.
So far my inner critic has stayed quiet for the most part.  But I am sure ‘she’ will come out and play soon enough.  I am a perfectionist.  I am my own worst critic.  For now, my critic is happy to watch me make art for others :)  
I also supports others in grief and create artwork for others through a pen pal program that I am a part of.   I have made and sent a variety of things like artistic cards, pins and bracelets.  I receive such beautiful reactions from every person about how it means so much to them to have their child's name honored and for me to be so thoughtful.  I hope that I can continue to bring these feelings into others lives.  I myself have gone from no reminders of my babies to a lot of jewelry, plaques I painted, and soon to be framed sonograms.  I want to be surrounded by my babies because they are my only children and I will speak of them and love them as long as I live.  They will always be my children.
I have been impacted by every blog I have ever read.  It is sad that there are so many.  I follow a lot of blogs and have been touched by all of these women.  Reading their journey has truly helped me on my long road of grief.  I read one story of a woman who decided to name the baby that was miscarried too early to know its gender.  This baby was real, and by naming it ~ it helped her connect to her child.  This impacted me greatly as we also had not named our children as we did not know their sex.  So I got to thinking we should choose unisex names and give our children a more concrete space in our lives.   
I am trying to pay forward the support and inspiration I have received by creating doves for others and being as honest as I can be through my journey of grief.  We all feel so alone through our loss and I want to make it clear to women that they are NOT alone!
Two quotes that I would like to share that help me is:

"Grief cannot be hurried. It cannot be forced. It doesn't go away just because the rest of the world thinks there is a certain number of days to finish it up or because tears at odd junctures are unsettling. Grief has its own timeline, its own rhythm."  & "I tell you the truth, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy." - John 16:2


Giveaway: Please click on the link below for Too Beautiful for Earth and leave a comment.  The winner will receive a customized angel plaque! 

You can read more about Jessica's story on Faces and also on her blogs:   
Too Beautiful for Earth


Trena said...

Jessica, you are such a beautiful person inside and out and believe me, you inspire so many people. I love those those quotes. So very true. ♥ Keep doing what you do, you are amazing!

Mary said...

You have been such a blessing to me. I treasure your friendship, the dove you made me and the beautiful plaque you sent for Micah. I am so glad that our babies brought us together. I just love you, Riley and Peyton so much. It is so sweet that Micah's story is what led you to name Riley and Peyton. I can't tell you how much that touches my heart. To know that Micah's short life made a difference to someboby in this world does my mommy heart good. There is nothing better anyone could ever do for me. Thank you for that! You and your angels will forever have a place in my heart.

I encourage anyone who is reading this to get to know Jess. You won't regret it! She is one of the most kindhearted and down to Earth people you will ever meet. She has a heart bigger than the Pacific Ocean and invites us all in.

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