Review: Loved Baby by Sarah Philpott, PhD.

November 10.

It was my due date the first time I was pregnant. Only I never made it that far. Shortly after finding out I was pregnant, I miscarried and my world shattered.

Even now, nearly four years later, I still grieve that day. More often than not, I burst into tears on November 10 as soon as I realize what day it is. This, despite the fact that I now have a thriving 2.5-year-old daughter for who I am exceedingly grateful.

Even so, I mourn the baby I never knew. I mourn what might have been.

After miscarrying, I did what I always do. I ran to Amazon to try to console myself in books. Only, I quickly learned there were none. Eventually, I found some books that I found helpful, especially An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination by Elizabeth McCracken – a memoir about Elizabeth’s experience with still birth.

As helpful as An Exact Replica of a Figment of My Imagination was, it wasn’t actually about miscarriage. I quickly realized there was a hole in the market; Nothing was about miscarriage.

For that reason, I was excited to read Loved Baby: 31 Devotions Helping You Grieve and Cherish Your Child After Pregnancy Loss by Sarah Philpott, PhD.

Loved Baby

To be clear, I wish this book wasn’t needed. But with as prevalent as miscarriage is, it definitely is.

Since Loved Baby is a devotional, its chapters are short, something I think is helpful for grieving moms who may not be able to stomach anything longer in any one sitting.

What I appreciate most about Loved Baby is its scope. Sarah covers everything from Searching for Why to mourning your baby to dealing with hurtful words following your loss to grieving fathers to honoring your due date, celebrating the baby you lost, and choosing joy over fear during future pregnancies.

Each devotional is practical, but it’s also filled with stories – both Sarah’s own as well as those of others who are part of the Loved Baby community. Additionally, each chapter is filled with relevant Scripture passages. Each devotional ends with an activity called “Soul Work”, which includes some sort of thoughtful journal prompt to help you continue thinking about that devotion’s theme. Many grieving moms will find these prompts helpful, if not therapeutic.

To be clear, even though Loved Baby’s subtitle indicates it’s for anyone who’s suffered a pregnancy loss, I think this book is really geared for those who have experienced miscarriage.

That said, any Christian woman who's experienced miscarriage will find Loved Baby: 31 Devotions Helping You Grieve and Cherish Your Child After Pregnancy Loss to be an extraordinarily helpful resource. Every church library / bookstore should carry it. Although it’s geared for women, spouses might also find it helpful to better understand their wife’s experience. Loved Baby would also be a helpful resource for a support group to work through together.

As Sarah says, “There is no way around grief.” That’s certainly true of miscarriage. Yet, those who have experienced it will find Loved Baby to be a helpful companion for traveling through grief… I know it was for me, even four years after the fact.

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If you, or someone you know has experienced the heartbreak of miscarriage, first, I'm sorry. Secondly, comment here for a chance to win a copy of Loved Baby. A winner will be chosen at random on Wednesday, November 8. 

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Disclosure: I received a free copy of Loved Baby from The Blog About Blogger Network in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Jen Bradbury on Youth Ministry

Jen serves as the director of youth ministry at Faith Lutheran Church in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. A veteran youth worker, Jen holds an MA in Youth Ministry Leadership from Huntington University. Jen is the author of The Jesus Gap: What Teens Actually Believe about Jesus (The Youth Cartel), The Real Jesus (The Youth Cartel), Unleashing the Hidden Potential of Your Student Leaders (Abingdon), and the forthcoming A Mission That Matters (Abingdon). Her writing has also appeared in YouthWorker Journal, Immerse, and The Christian Century. Jen is also the Assistant Director of Arbor Research Group where she has led many national studies. When not doing ministry or research, she and her husband, Doug, and daughter, Hope, can be found traveling and enjoying life together.

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