The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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May 8, 2013

Remember bereaved moms on Mother's Day

April 14, 2012, our son Samuel was born. He lived only four hours.

At 15 weeks gestation, he had been diagnosed with a fluke and fatal condition. We were told he would not be able to live. We carried him with love for as long as we could, but our love was not enough to save him.

Now, we are left to pick up the pieces of our broken hearts. He will forever be our baby and we miss him dearly every single day.

As a bereaved parent, Mother’s Day is especially hard for me. It’s such a reminder of what should have been.

Mother’s Day is a time to celebrate motherhood. For a woman with children, it’s a day to feel proud and recognized. To be doted on, presented with gifts, and to soak up the appreciation of our families for the work we’ve done. But for the many women who have suffered the death of their child, this day is often the most difficult day of the year.

To the person who never experienced the devastation of child-loss, it may not be obvious why this day is so painful for those of us who have. They may not realize how the constant reminders of Mother’s Day in every store, restaurant and advertisement brings a deep hurt into our hearts that cannot be ignored.

Mother’s Day was officially founded by Anna Jarvis, who created it as a day to honor her own mother who had experienced the death of seven children.

This Mother’s Day, let’s celebrate all mothers. If you know a woman who has suffered the loss of her child, please remember her this Sunday. Say her child’s name and let her know you care.

RaeAnne Fredrickson

North Mankato

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