Mending Invisible Wings was written by a doula, whose first birth she attended was for a dear friend whose labor was wonderful and her birth, tragic.

As a doula, a birth witness, we find ourselves on the outside of care. The Mama and Dad of the baby receive emotional support, the nurses, docs, midwives have circles of support, and the doula finds herself lost, spiraling, grieving wholly, without support.

Mending Invisible Wings is written for mothers who have lost a baby. It is also written for doulas and childbirth educators and nurses and midwives and docs and anyone who loves and supports women in the childbearing years. Mending Invisible Wings gives a gentle, private outlet for grief.

If you are in need of gentle healing after witnessing the death of a baby or supporting a mother through her loss, please know that Mending Invisible Wings: Healing from the loss of your baby, is for you, too.

with love,


October 15 is National Infant Loss Awareness Day.

If you, or if someone you love, has lost a baby, show your acknowledgment of this loss by lighting a candle at 7pm, your time wherever you are.

There will be a wave of light blanketing the earth, a world-wide reaching out and showing of support for those infants lost.

May this be a gentle night,


Ahh… December has been a lovely month for beautiful words written by amazing folks. Read what Jennifer Rokeby-Mayeux of International Doula (a publication of DONA-Doulas of North America) wrote:

I had the pleasure of reading Mary Burgess’s book Mending Invisible Wings; a Healing Journal for Mothers. The spiral bound journal style book is full of affirmations, activities and exercises to assist mothers as they heal from the loss of a child due to miscarriage, stillbirth or infant death.

The journal is divided into four parts, each with many exercises that lead the mother through a variety of activities that engage all the senses. Each exercise includes an action, affirmation and self-nurturance activity. This journal boasts plenty of space dedicated to journaling, writing and drawing, so everything can be contained in one private, personal space.

This book could be just the right gift to give to a mother who is dealing with the death of a child. The journal will allow the mother to work through her pain and grief at her own pace, guiding her through this difficult process.

Mending Invisible Wings: Healing From the Loss of Your Baby
By Mary Burgess with Shiloh Sophia McCloud
Palm of Her Hand Publications

(see Purchase section for more information on purchasing Mending Invisible Wings)

Oh, my heart is singing! To open up the latest edition (Winter 2009/10 Number 92) and see a wonderful review of Mending Invisible Wings by Midwifery Today founder, Jan Tritten. Here it is:

Mending Invisible Wings: Healing From the Loss of Your Baby, by Mary Burgess. 2009. (Healdsburg, California: Palm of Her Hand, $29.50, 175 pages, spiralbound.)

From the beginning of this sensitive journal and spiced throughout are lovely black and white drawings. Even if a mama is too grief-stricken to read or write words at the beginning of her grief journey, she can still take in the insightful drawings. Phyllis Klaus provides a gently loving Foreword. The journal moves parents along through the healing process with poems, tender words and places for the reader to write her own affirmations and to tell her story. This is an interactive journal and remembrance of the baby with many places to tell the baby’s story.

This book adds just what is needed to the healing realm of birth loss. Our resources in this area are so much richer because Mary Burgess took the time to help us through this difficult area of life and death.

This book can be purchased through http://www.palmofherhand.com.

Jan Tritten is the publisher and editor in chief of Midwifery Today magazine.

Thank you, Jan!

Babylost Holidays

There are many emotions spurred during the holiday season, and for the woman who has lost a baby, holidays can be a tender, emotion-filled, and difficult time.

Have you, or has someone dear to you, lost a baby to miscarriage, stillbirth, or within the first year of life? Were you the midwife or doula to someone who lost a baby?

If so, consider this lovely journal for yourself or this babylost Mama: Mending Invisible Wings – a healing journal for mothers who have lost a baby.

Within its pages are writings from others: mothers, doulas, a midwife, a father… each of whom have traveled this path. There are gently guided Healing Expressions, encouraging the reader to acknowledge, honor, and release her emotions surrounding this loss, plus an entire section of healing ceremonies. Poetry is woven throughout, like a golden thread. There are many illustrations on thick paper – to color, paint, write in, scribble on, decorate… illustrations that speak to a grieving woman’s heart. There are lots of blank spaces and room to think and write and draw and cry on and dream. There are visualizations and affirmations and suggestions for honoring the woman’s body, that she may so deeply feel has let her down.

There is no more difficult journey than to lose one’s child.

It is hard to find the words to say.

A gift of Mending Invisible Wings is a lovely place to start.

with love, m.

Hi – Just wanted to share a site that is offering a free book giveaway of Mending Invisible Wings: Good luck to you!


And Emily’s site is a wonderful place to visit and know about. Enjoy this contest.


October 15 is the National Infant Loss Awareness Night, and the world-wide candle vigil, Wave of Light, happens this night, everywhere at 7pm local time. Those who want to honor, acknowledge, and remember babies lost are invited to light a candle, or candles. Here are mine for tonight:

7pm, Oct 15, Candles

7pm, Oct 15, Candles

Candles, Oct 15, 7pm

Candles, Oct 15, 7pm

w/ Mother of All painting

w/ Mother of All painting

These candles were placed beneath the Mother of All, a painting created by Shiloh. Do you know the story behind this painting? If not, here is an excerpt from Mending Invisible Wings…


The painting is entitled: Mother of All, Send Your Angels to Protect This Holy Soul, and she has an amazing story…

While being painted, somehow the painting got punctured. The canvas actually tore through, in the area just below her right breast. I was devastated. I had no idea what to do.

My mentor and family matriarch, Sue Hoya Sellars, used the painting to demonstrate the technique of mending a painting.  You cut a piece of canvas and from another canvas, and gesso underneath and many layers over the back. The whole process takes some time, and while I was doing it, I felt the healing journey in myself as well.

You cannot see the tear on the front anymore, although there is a slight dimple.  She has healed, but on the back is this wonderful little band aid, created with so much care, which taught me to do a technique of curing paintings that I have had to do many times since.  I feel a sense of affection for that spot on the painting now – and the whole painting took on another layer of energy.

My husband was on a trip when I was working on healing it and finishing it, and as soon as he got home, he said he had to have that special painting in our home. It hung in our house for over five years.  I made prints of it, which became bestsellers,
with the caption, Protection for this Woman.

When Mary and I were working this book, Mending Invisible Wings, this painting came to mind as WHO needed to be cover. Mary agreed and so I designed the whole theme around her opalescent blue and purple palette. Then after the cover was completed, I spontaneously asked my husband if I could have the painting back – and he agreed, reticently. I said that I thought she had another life to live, where others could see her. I hung her up in my studio.  Now, she belongs to Mary Burgess, the Author of this book, and it was through sharing with her the story of the painting, that this little writing got included as one of the last pieces in the book.
Mary and I both see the deeper meaning everywhere, and are always and ever eager to share the medicine just beneath the surface.

She has always been a guardian for women. She is very rich… her colors are opalescent and have lots of shimmer. She is totally at peace, and she is not the one wounded, but the one protecting, whom the Mother of All sent for us. She is a Guardian, a Protector. The painting is a prayer, and the prayer itself is written in the lower left hand corner.

She did take that one wound, but I feel, for our sakes, she endured it and healed to show us all how to heal our wounds. She is a sign of protection and of healing.

Mother of All, Send Your Angels to Protect This Holy Soul


This is such a lovely site – and a beautiful way to create a memorial for your baby…


The heart breaks and breaks and lives by breaking. It is necessary to go through dark and deeper dark and not to turn.

~ Stanley Kunitz, from The Testing Tree