Today is the Feast of Pope St. John Paul II. Very cool day and very cool saint. But what makes it so significant in our house is that it is the name day for the baby we lost last year at 9 weeks gestation. And since October is baby loss awareness month, I would like to make a tribute to our little one.
He stopped growing around 6 weeks. But it was not until Divine Mercy Sunday (2014) and the day that Pope St. John Paul II was canonized that my bleeding began. It took a few more days for him to fully pass.
We had already been thinking about naming the baby John Paul, and the canonization date so close to the day the baby passed from inside me made it so much more significant. I still think about our little lost baby a lot. And I do pray to him, especially for his little brother.
These days I feel surrounded by the saints, especially the newly canonized St. Zelie Martin. This is what she said about her children who died in infancy:
“When I closed the eyes of my dear little children and when I buried them, I felt great pain, but it was always with resignation. I didn’t regret the sorrows and the problems I had endured for them. Several people said to me, “It would be better to never have had them.” I can’t bear that kind of talk. I don’t think the sorrows and problems could be weighed against the eternal happiness of my children. So they weren’t lost forever. Life is short and full of misery. We’ll see them again in Heaven.
Above all, it was on the death of my first child that I felt more deeply the happiness of having a child in Heaven, for God showed me in a noticeable way that He accepted my sacrifice. Through the intercession of my little angel, I received a very extraordinary grace.”
And today is our little (can I still call him little?) John Paul’s name day. And like all name days around here, we made chocolate cake.
Pope St. John Paul II, pray for us! And little baby John Paul, we love you, and entrust you always to the mercy of God!