International Wave of Light 2023: A Pregnancy & Infant Loss Remembrance Event

hands holding candle lamp

As the seasons shift and a chill graces the air, October brings me back to one of the most bittersweet moments of the year: the International Wave of Light. This ceremony is an integral part of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, and it holds a sacred space in my heart and in our community.

The Wave of Light is a special ceremony that takes place on October 15th at 7pm local time to honor all angel babies–those lost to pregnancy loss, TFMR, stillbirth, and infant loss. You can participate in a formal ceremony, like our Virtual Wave of Light 2023, or you can participate by silently lighting a candle in the comfort of your own home.

If you’re wondering whether yours or someone you love’s baby “counts,” let me assure you: they do. Whether the loss was early or late, whether it required an agonizing choice, the parents and baby both matter and deserve to be honored if it feels supportive to the parents.

Whether you’ve navigated this heart-wrenching journey yourself or you’re here to offer your support, know that the Wave of Light serves as a beacon for us all, illuminating the love we hold for the babies we’ve lost but will never forget.

In this article, you’ll discover:

  • What the Wave of Light truly represents,
  • How you can effortlessly participate,
  • Why this ceremony is a cornerstone of healing and remembrance,
  • And where to find commemorative candles to make the event even more special.
A square image with a photo of a woman's hands holding a candle. On top of the photo, there's a text box that says Wave of Light, October 15, 7pm EST, hosted by Undefining Motherhood and The Miscarriage Doula

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What is the Wave of Light?

The International Wave of Light is more than an event; it’s a sanctuary of collective remembrance and support. It honors babies lost too soon to miscarriage, termination for medical reasons (TFMR), stillbirth, and infant death. It can be an especially supportive events for parents and loved ones grieving their beloved babies.

Originating from President Ronald Reagan’s 1988 proclamation of October as “Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month,” this ceremony provides a formal space to honor angel babies. Think of it as the poignant closing ceremony of Baby Loss Awareness Week, celebrated every October 15th.

How Do I Participate in the Wave of Light?

Participation is simple and flexible.

Light a candle at 7pm local time and let it burn for an hour.

In these virtual times, you can also share your light on social media using the hashtag #WaveOfLight. The choice is yours, but the collective impact is immense.

Join Our Virtual Wave of Light 2023

Our virtual ceremony will take place on Zoom. Want us to honor your baby by speaking their name aloud? Submit your baby’s name here.

A square image with a photo of a woman's hands holding a candle. On top of the photo, there's a text box that says Wave of Light, October 15, 7pm EST, hosted by Undefining Motherhood and The Miscarriage Doula

After you submit a name, we’ll send you a Zoom link for the event at 7pm EST on October 15.

Share photos of your candles and tag us using #undefiningmotherhood.

You can also post photos of your own candles and tag us @undefiningmotherhood or using #undefiningmotherhood.

Social Media Templates

We’ve created special graphics for you to use to show your candles and honor your little ones. Add one of these to your Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook feeds.

Please tag us in your stories so we can support you.

Stories Templates

To add a photo to your Instagram or Facebook stories, consider using one of these graphics. Please tag us in your stories so we can support you.

Why is the Wave of Light so Important?

The Wave of Light is a cornerstone in breaking the silence around miscarriage and infant loss.

It offers a sense of community and reminds us that we’re not alone in our grief. As the wave travels globally, it reinforces the idea that grief is a burden too heavy to carry alone.

Wave of Light Candles

If you’re looking for commemorative candles, here are some of our favorites:

Angel Memorial Candles

Angel and Dove “In Loving Memory Candle”

Sweet and delicate. It has a light vanilla scent and is made from environmentally-friendly soy wax.

If you’re a family member or a friend of someone who lost a child, you can also have it gift wrapped and sent to your loved one.

Sentimental Keepsake Candles

Not religious or into angels? No problem.

White, Porcelain Candle

Uses a (secular) Gandhi quotation to perfectly capture how loss parents often feel: “There are no goodbyes for us. Wherever you are, you will always be in my heart.”

Personalized Candles

Want personalization? You have plenty of options, and these personalized candles can be so healing.

Angel Baby Personalized Candle

Include your child’s name on the candle. We love the quotation included on the candle’s label: “Precious. Loved. Remembered.”

What is your favorite way to celebrate the International Wave of Light?

Pink Rectangle with text on one side that says Wave of Light at 7pm EST on October 15 on Zoom. Hosted by Undefining Motherhood and The Miscarriage Doula. Click Here to Submit Your Child's Name

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