Author Archives: Danyelle and Eric

Capture Your Grief 2016 Day 31: Sunset Reflection


#captureyourgrief Day 31: Sunset Reflection. This day once again brings Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month to a close. This is the 3rd year I have participated in this grief project, and I believe that each year I have learned something new about myself and my grief journey. This year I actually feel relief that it’s over. This has been such a heavy time of year since 2014… The twins’ birthday followed quickly by loss month, and then a myriad of holidays…. It makes it a difficult time of year for loss parents because holidays and family events bring heavy emotion and such obvious light to what (and WHO) is missing in our lives… October may be over, but another cycle of holidays without Rylie and Avary is underway…. Oh please be gentle on my heart this year…

Thank you to every single person who took the time to read my posts this past month and who remembered R&A with us…. Each of you are truly helping to heal my heart

Capture Your Grief 2016 Day 29: Give Away Your Love


#captureyourgrief Day 29: Give Away Your Love.
Dear Loss Momma at Brookfield Zoo today,

I want you to know that I saw you. I want you to know that in the chaos of holding my honeybee rainbow baby as she pulled at my hair, I saw you. First I noticed the pregnancy and infant loss blue and pink ribbon on the front of your hoodie. And then as you and your significant other passed, I turned to look at you once more, and noticed in small font across the back 2 names in pink and one in blue, all with a birthdate of March 2014…

Momma I want you to know that I saw you. That even though we didn’t speak, in that moment I felt connected. For that moment the chaos and hundreds of people around us just melted away…. I know your heart, loss sister, and I know that you know mine as well…

Loss mama, I want you to know that for a moment I contemplated running after you to give you a hug. To tell you about my beautiful daughters. To tell you that you are not alone as you struggle this Halloween (like every other holiday) to get through it without your babies…

Sweet Momma, I want you to know that I saw your sweatshirt. That even though I do not know you or your babies, that today they were remembered. That today I thought of your children, and how in an alternate universe somewhere perhaps we would have met on the playground at the zoo today, all 5 of our missing babies in tow, and become fast friends…

Brave Momma, I want you to know that even though I didn’t physically reach out in the chaos of today, you and your babies have been on my heart and mind all day. I want you to know that you are never alone. And I want to thank you for wearing this outward symbol of your loss today, so that I didn’t feel alone… On such a hard day when all 3 of my girls should have been dressed up in their costumes riding the carousel, you helped me to not feel alone…. Thank you Warrior Mama

Capture Your Grief 2016 Day 28: Self Compassion


#captureyourgrief Day 28: Self Compassion. I’ll be honest, I am not very good with this… A lot has fallen by the wayside for me since Rylie and Avary died. I do not do a lot of things for myself that I should because, well, I just don’t care enough. But I try to be patient with myself. I try to give myself a break when I just don’t feel strong enough. And I try my best to always do what I feel is right for my heart. For now, I think that’s enough….

Capture Your Grief 2016 Day 27: Family is Forever


#captureyourgrief Day 27: Family is Forever. This picture is different than the family of 5 photos I had always imagined… But it’s all we’ve got… Eric and I hope to continue to expand our earthly family over the next years, but nothing will ever change the place Rylie and Avary hold in our hearts, or in our family. They will forever be our first children, and all of their siblings’ big sisters 

Capture Your Grief 2016 Day 26: What Heals You

#captureyourgrief Day 26: #whathealsyou. What heals me? I think it depends on the day you ask, the mood I’m in, how heavy my heart feels on that particular day. Overall, it heals my heart to hear/see/read things that make me find a little peace for a moment. Something that makes me KNOW that I will in fact see my sweet girls again one day… Something that makes me feel without a doubt that they are ‘here’ with us…. Something that makes their existence feel real to someone other than just me…

I have been watching the show ‘This is Us’ with mixed emotions for the past several weeks. Reviews say things such as ‘exactly the feel-good show we’ve been needing’ and ‘each week is better than the last’. And my thoughts-particularly as a loss mother- has been ‘what’s ‘feel-good’ about this?!? About losing a child? About struggling with difficulties of adoption (for both the parents and the child)?? About struggling with alcoholism, obesity, finding and losing a biological parent??’ I feel like I’ve been watching each episode with my breath held,
waiting to see how they handle each of these difficult, real life situations. And then last night’s episode ended with a monologue about life, death, and family- comparing it to a painting of random, messy lines, all piled on top of each other with several different colors- a picture that appears to have no beginning and no end to it…. And listening to it…. I found one of those rare moments of peace I so desperately seek to heal my heart…

“People will die, people that we love… The fact that just because someone dies- just because you can’t see them or talk to them anymore- it doesn’t mean they are not still in the painting. And I think maybe that’s the point of the whole thing-there is no dying. There’s no ‘you’, or ‘me’, or ‘them’- it’s just ‘us’. And this sloppy, wild, colorful, magical thing that has no beginning, has no end- it’s right here-I think it’s us” -This is Us, Episode 5

Rylie and Avary are a part of our ‘us’. It doesn’t matter that you cannot see them, that we cannot hear them, that they died…. They are us. There is no distinction between those who live and those who don’t. We are all a part of this beautiful, sloppy, wild, sad, colorful mess that is our family, our life, our ‘us’….



Capture Your Grief 2016 Day 24: Consciously Becoming


#captureyourgrief Day 24: Consciously Becoming. I am consciously becoming an infant and pregnancy loss advocate. I am consciously living my truth in honor of my girls. I am consciously breaking the silence and stigma sounding loss. I am consciously raising awareness and funds for research to combat infant prematurity. I am consciously saying what I know so many loss momma’s are feeling, and are too afraid to say out loud… I am consciously becoming a voice for the #1in4

Capture Your Grief 2016 Day 23: Sounds, Seasons + Scents


#captureyourgrief Day 23: Sounds, Seasons + Scents. These yellow flowers started to bloom in our yard right after we returned from the hospital after Rylie and Avary were born. This is actually the bouquet we picked to display during their memorial service a few weeks later… R&A’s nursery was gray and yellow, and so as soon as these flowers bloomed, we knew it was them and that yellow would always be ‘their color’.

Rylie and Avary were born the first year we were in our house and so all summer we watched as these ridiculously tall unattractive stalks grew literally across our entire back and side yard, not knowing if they would ever even flower. It was within days after their deaths that these tiny yellow flowers finally bloomed….

Fast forward 2 years to this fall. We have since removed all these stalks, built a garage, re-fenced the yard, applied sod and new landscaping and added a paver patio. After all of that, 1 stalk somehow survived, right outside our living room window. It bloomed last week, with only 2 small yellow flowers… Coincidence? I don’t believe so… This one ugly stalk that blooms 2 beautiful yellow flowers- this one will get to stay 💛🐝💛🐝

Capture Your Grief 2016 Day 22: Pearls of Wisdom


#captureyourgrief Day 22: Pearls of Wisdom. You will never stop grieving because you will never stop loving. That is okay. You will not go back to being the person you once were. That is okay. The loss of your precious child(ren) has forever changed you. That is okay. You will learn to laugh again, despite the pain. You will keep living, even when you don’t think you want to. Your grief, just like your love, is a part of you. Wear that proudly, for it is through your pain and your strength that the world will remember your precious child(ren).