Monday, December 10, 2012

Faith's Lodge

This past weekend, Bryan and I went away to Faith's Lodge. It's a beautiful place for families affected by babyloss, childhood illness, or the loss of a child. It's amazing and I'm so glad we went.

We had been thinking of going for the past few months, and things just came together for us to go this time. We arrived on Thursday and left on Sunday. As I'm sure a lot of other people who go say, it wasn't long enough. I wish I could just move in for a few months. 

There are so many things to say about it. First, it's just beautiful. It's very rustic-looking and has been decorated from top to bottom with beautiful things from nature. There are leather sofas and wooden tables and photos of flowers and animals every where you look. There are fireplaces in just about every room and you can tell they really took the time to make every person's stay as comfortable as possible. Every family has a private suite with a fireplace and a beautiful view of the woods/lake.  Here are some photos:

The view from the woods

The library

the massive deck overlooking the lake

the living room

living room (the craft room is through those open doors)

the lake

another view of the lodge
It's really hard for me to put into words what this weekend was like. There were three other couples there with us. Each one lost their first and only baby. Two of the couples had also carried a baby with a fatal condition, and the other couple lost their baby unexpectedly at birth. I can't really describe the emotions of being with people who just get it. You feel so normal and comfortable with them because they instantly understand what you're feeling. They know what it means to miss and love their baby. They know the horror and pain of hearing the news that their baby will not live and you don't have to explain a thing. There is such a peace that comes from being in a safe environment like that. You don't have to worry about your reactions/tears/etc because they get it. It's good to feel safe in that way. Simultaneously, you hate being in a place that was made for this purpose. You hate that you would never know these people if your baby had not died. It's so comforting to know you're not alone, but horrible that these precious babies did not live. Like we all said, we hate that this place exists, but we're so glad it does!

We spend much of the weekend talking with the other couples, sharing our stories and our sweet babies with one another. There is a special table in the common area for each family to share special photos and other things from their baby. 
Our things for Samuel <3

Faith Rose <3

Kadence Love <3

Gabriel Thomas <3
I imagine our babies meeting up in heaven and looking down on us together. I love to meet the parent's of Samuel's friends <3.

During the stay, you can do whatever you'd like. You can participate in arts/crafts, you can watch movies, play games, talk, read, nap, take a walk, whatever feels right to you. We all painted birdhouses, rocks, and made stepping stones. The men made wooden signs. We all talked and worked and ate together. It was so good. (We did all joke about how silly it sounds for adults to sit around doing little craft projects, but it just worked for us. It's good to keep busy and be creative.) It's a very laid back environment. 

our stepping stone

Bryan, working hard at his sign

me, painting our rock

Our rock <3

The almost finished sign (he plans to stain it)

There is a Bridge of Hope near the lake where everyone who comes to Faith's Lodge sets the rock with their baby/child's name. It's a way to honor and remember all the children missing on this earth. It's both beautiful and sad to see all the rocks.

We found our friend Erin's babies, and put Samuel's rock near by. (I actually made two rocks. I made the one with him on it first, but loved it too much to leave behind. So we made another one to leave with the others).
Hannah and Charlie <3

The second rock for Samuel <3

Leaving our rock with all the others. (it was snowing)

We had to clear the snow to find the perfect spot.

In every room, there is a journal of all the stories from every guest who has stayed in that room. It's heartbreaking to read all the stories. So many babies/children missing <3. On the last night, Bryan and I went off alone to think about Samuel and write out his story.

our Little Love story
Overall, it was a very meaningful time for us. I just kept thinking, "I wish you could just move in to a place like this for the first year after your baby dies". It's like a little bit of heaven. It's very peaceful and healing. I loved it.

I hope we can go back again someday.

(Here are some photos from our walk.  Just for fun.)


  1. It looks amazing there. However, I really got a lot out of professionally-guided programs here. Could you comment more on how it worked for you not having a program, schedule or guide?

    1. Actually, there was an itinerary for each day. We got it in the mail before arriving. You could pick what things you wanted to do - any or all - and do them. One of the days, there was also a group counseling session with a Psychologist. I think our group was extra laid back because there were only 4 families instead of the typical 8. I don't think I would want something super structured right now. you just never know how you'll be feeling and I don't like to be rushed when I'm trying to do something special for Samuel. There was a host couple and the director there to make us meals and set up the crafts and clean up. They were awesome because sometimes you just need to be taken care of. I really liked it and would recommend it for every family who has lost a baby/child.

  2. This was so beautiful, it definitely brought tears to my eyes to see the many children represented in the pictures of the rocks. I am thankful there is a place like this out there, I wonder what the story of how it was started is? It looks like a gorgeous place!

    1. I wish I would have taken a photo of all the rocks (well, it would actually be several photos). There are so many.

      The people who created the lodge lost their first baby, Faith, to an umbilical cord accident just before birth.

  3. I'm so glad you guys had such a great time! And I love (and hate) that you all had such similar stories. When we went, we all had SUCH different experiences.
    Awesome pictures, too. :)

  4. RaeAnne, I'm so glad you had a good time at Faith's Lodge. So much of what you said is true for me too... I found it so comforting to be around other BL parents and to finally feel "normal", but at the same time it was so hard to hear the stories of each of the babies. I really love all of the beautiful crafts you made in memory of Samuel <3


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