Crafting is very therapeutic and even more so for those on a grief journey. It is now September and my Facebook feeds are full of those showing off back to school creations and wreaths for the upcoming holidays. I enjoy seeing pictures of these creations.
Before my first child, Cameron, passed away I had never used a glue gun, painted and decorated a picture frame, made a ribbon pin, or made a bracelet. My loss was in November (almost six years ago) and the following May I met the ladies who formed “Mothers of Angels,” which was the predecessor group to The Still Remembered Project. By then I was desperate for another baby and needed a distraction from trying to conceive again. It is amazing how creative you can be when searching for a healthy and productive way to channel the thoughts of your grief.
While the glue gun and I never got along that well (still not so much six years later!), making bracelets became my “thing.” Once I finally got the positive pregnancy test, I immediately started to worry about every single thing that could go wrong. Some nights I literally couldn’t sleep – so I made bracelets for our memory boxes. I scoured Joann Fabrics, Michael’s, and Pat Catan’s for deals and different supplies. One Saturday, I remember making my husband stop at each Joann Fabrics and Michael’s we were near in a “different” part of town (They all carry different inventory, right? That was my story.). It may seem odd to others, but to new parents without a baby to lug around it was a good day for us.
Then our first daughter was born and a second. Life became full and busy. I told myself that I didn’t need to be as involved with the group and that I was entering a new phase of my grief journey. Once the girls got older, I realized there was something missing and it was these crafts . They connected me to Cameron. I can’t put him on the bus to Kindergarten this year, but I can make a bracelet set for a mother and baby to honor his memory.
My daughters love to assist in their own way. They ask about the moms and babies and we talk about Cameron. While I enjoy making these bracelets, I am often saddened by the reason I need to make them. I wonder if the moms will wear her bracelet every day, sometimes or never. Will she have her baby wear theirs? I hope the bracelet set and the other memory box items gives her some comfort and she knows she is not alone. After all these years, it still gives me comfort to make them…