Miscarriage ceremony ideas / how to honour pregnancy loss

A miscarriage ceremony is simply a ritual or practise done to honour your baby. It really isn’t what you do that matters, but how you do it. When done with intention and reverence, a ceremony to honour your pregnancy loss can be deeply healing. A ceremony can help to validate your feelings about your loss and can give you a practical, tangible thing you can do with your grief.

For a long time I resisted having a ceremony after my 3 losses. I remember it felt too hard, too sad, too overwhelming. Eventually though, I realised I could create a ceremony in any way that I wanted.

A miscarriage ceremony doesn’t have to include lots of people, or even anyone else if you don’t want. It doesn’t have to involve words, or knowing the right thing to say. Your ceremony can include anything that is meaningful for you. I hope the ideas in this post help you to design a ritual that honours your baby in the way that feels right for you. (Scroll to the end if you prefer to watch the video version)

miscarriage ceremony ideas

7 miscarriage ceremony ideas

miscarriage ceremony

Create a nature mandala

A mandala is a geometric shape that is used by many traditions to focus attention in a practise of spiritual mindfulness. You can create a nature mandala from anything that you can forage around your area. It works well with flowers, shells or even different coloured rocks.

Creating a nature mandala is also a great way to include children in your miscarriage ceremony. It can be a beautiful family activity that you can do together to say goodbye to their sibling.

miscarriage ceremony

Candles

Lighting candles plays an important role in a variety of traditions. They adorn buddhist temples as symbols of respect. Christian rituals often include candles to signify smoke carrying prayers to God. They’re used throughout the year in ceremonies within the Jewish tradition. It’s no wonder that lighting candles creates a feeling of reverence for many of us.

You could use candles as one part of your ceremony, or they could be the entire ritual. In the past I’ve asked my community to light a candle for my baby after each loss. Each time, I was inundated with photos of candles being lit around the world. I can’t even tell you how much these expressions of love meant to me.

You could ask your family and friends to light a candle for you and your baby. It’s also a really lovely way to include your loved ones and give them something practical to do, when they don’t have the right words to say.

miscarriage ceremony

Light a fire

Fires have been included in rituals and ceremonies throughout history. Gathering around a fire with a close circle of friends and family can be a beautiful way to say goodbye to your baby. You might want to say some words, play a meaningful song or take a moment of silence.

You could also write and then burn a letter to your baby during a fire ceremony, as a private way to say goodbye.

Scatter ashes (or flowers) in a meaningful place

Not everyone who loses a baby gets the opportunity to scatter ashes. If you have a D&C or a late stage miscarriage in hospital, you can always ask to take home your baby’s remains. But many women miscarry at home, and this option isn’t really one that they want to consider at the time. If you don’t have ashes you might like to scatter flowers instead, as a way to symbolically release your baby.

miscarriage ceremony

Release your babies ashes in a place that is meaningful to you and somewhere that you can go back to when you want to feel close to your baby. We scattered Orion’s ashes where the yellow flowers grow in the dunes near our house. I’ve found that I often want to return to this place on anniversaries and special dates. Coming back here helps me feel close to him whenever I feel sad.

Plant a tree

Many women choose to plant a tree in memory of their baby. Popular memorial trees include Magnolias, Flame Trees, Cherry Blossoms and Jacarandas (although make sure you choose a tree that will suit the area you live in.) Just like scattering ashes, planting a tree creates a significant place that you can come back to, which can be so helpful when so much of grieving a pregnancy is invisible and intangible.

Write or journal

Writing and journalling has been a really important part of my healing after my losses. It’s why I included a whole section in my book devoted to writing prompts. You can include writing in your miscarriage ceremony by asking for others to write words of hope for you, or you can write a letter to your baby to say goodbye.

Create an altar

An altar is a collection of meaningful items that is often used as a centrepiece for a spiritual ritual or practise. After each of my losses I created an altar in my yoga space. Each morning I would spend time here in meditation, journalling and practising yoga. It meant I gave my very raw emotions time and space each day, just to be. I found it helped me to feel like I could get on with the rest of my day, after having released some of my grief each morning on my mat. If you’d like to practise a yoga class for healing after miscarriage you can try this one here.

miscarriage ceremony

I hope these ideas have helped you to start thinking about a ceremony that will help you say goodbye to your baby. It won’t be the end of your grief, but it will be the start of you stepping towards healing. If you’d like to be guided through a miscarriage ceremony with me, I have created one in my Online Yoga Circle. You can join us here.

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