There’s a new movie set to come out in 2014 starring Minnie Driver called “Return to Zero,” about a successful couple who lose their first child in utero. Its award-winning writer/producer/director, Sean Hanish, has teamed up with ReconceivingLoss.com to help break the silence surrounding the topic, calling for submissions of stories, essays, poems and other artistic expressions about this type of loss for a digital archive intended to help foster healing, with the best being featured in the Return to Zero Story Archive here.
According to the press release, it is estimated that 25% of pregnancies result in loss annually; in the United States, the number of stillborn babies, estimated at 36,000, is equivalent to the number of automobile-related fatalities each year. If you’ve been affected by these numbers in some way, you can submit your story for consideration in the Return to Zero Story Archive here. Below are three short excerpts from featured selections in this Story Archive:
Miscarriage lays an odd kind of grief on the table. My body, once buzzing with hormones that announced an undeniable presence, now echoes like an empty mausoleum. One moment I was pregnant with the future, the next moment that future disappeared in the shades of gray image on the doctorâ€™s sonogram screen.
– from Cheryl Dumesnil’s ReconceivingLoss.com submission “Ex Utero, A Post Partum Notebook“
Thatâ€™s what still trips me up: I learned to be thankful because I lost Liam. I donâ€™t have the regret of not having taken advantage of our time when he was in utero. That regret would kill me, but I only have this appreciation because I donâ€™t have Liam. I donâ€™t want this lesson. I want one moment with my son. I want to know the color of Liamâ€™s eyes.
– from Nancy Mendez-Booth’s post “With Deepest Gratitude“
I cannot shake the sense that someone existed, something beyond myself, beyond my hopes and fantasies, even if it was just the slightest phantom of a person, a shadow of a ghost. He has a name, he has a grave. We saw his face. These things were real. He has left his trace on me, like a fossil embedded in my flesh. He never existed â€“ but he still exists. I have nothing to remember, and yet I canâ€™t forget.
– from Michael Ravitch’s submission “The Neverknown“