My friend Niki asked me back in August if I'd be interested in coming to share, and I said I would be honored to. Her church was gracious enough to welcome her planning this event for this special Remembrance Day. I'm so glad it worked out. This is one of the few times I've been asked to speak locally, rather than in another state. I told her when she asked me if I could share that it's easy... all I need to do is get in the car and go! haha. It was a blessing to have my family and a couple friends come too.
Niki and I have been friends on social media for the past 5 or so years, and even though we live in the same area, we'd never met in person before! Niki and I connected because we both lost our precious babies at or near their due dates. Her son Nathan is also with the Lord. It was wonderful to see her and hug her and I was touched by what she shared about our friendship. Unfortunately, I don't have any photos of Niki and I together. :( I was occupied and didn't think of it until later.
Each person who wanted to light a candle for a lost baby who they carry in their hearts was invited to do so. This was my candle for Lily that was on the table where my family and friends sat. They gave this adorable little lantern as a gift to me to take home. :) I will keep this as a memento from the evening, as well as the bulletin for the event (I keep each one from wherever I speak as a keepsake and a reminder of what God has done).
This was the area for everyone to light a candle. The Fall theme was beautiful! The ladies did an excellent job decorating. I love the Willow Trees too because I collect them myself.
Here's the table with all the candle lit.
Candles for Lily Katherine and my Aunt Rachel Ross are in there.
Other precious babies honored and remembered.
Those are Niki's son, Nathan's, darling little feet, with his candle.
Niki had a table for me to set up to share some Lily keepsake items. I took several of my favorite things. And I myself was wearing my PAIL Awareness gear. ;)
The evening started off with people sharing praise reports and prayer requests. Then everyone was invited to enjoy some yummy food and beverages. My family liked that! ;) Everyone sang a few hymns that were selected by me. Niki was so sweet to ask if I had any in mind. I chose three that I thought suited the evening and my story - "Lily of the Valley," "I Surrender All," and "It Is Well With My Soul."
Here is the podium where I spoke, next to the table before it was decorated with Lily's things.
I then shared my story. Each time I share, I feel so at ease and this peace washes over me, knowing this is what I am called to do. God meets me at the microphone, as I've heard it said before. The speech was tailored a bit for this specific event. Someone snapped this photo of me. :)
At the end of my talk, I was able to share Lily's song with a video.
It is an honor and gift to talk with people one-on-one after sharing. When you open up your heart and share from a raw place, others who you don't even know feel like you are a safe place and that they can share their pain and rawness. That is one of my favorite parts when I speak... hearing the stories of others and entering in.
Here is part of the room with the tables for the event. The church members were warm and welcoming and it was a cozy, intimate setting.
The sign outside advertising for the event. :)
A beautiful house of the Lord.
Silly me, I forgot to share about my Lily's Legacy Comfort Boxes. So if you were at the event that evening and want to learn more, click here. :)