Yesterday, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar gathered together with friends and family members to pay tribute to their 20th child, Jubilee Shalom, who was stillborn after Michelle suffered a miscarriage in her second trimester of pregnancy. By all accounts, it was a lovely event that helped the family find some peace in their tragedy, but it's some photos from the event that have people talking.
After the miscarriage, the couple had some creative pictures taken with the baby's body. There are pictures of them holding her tiny hands and feet, which they distributed at the memorial, along with messages such as: "There is no foot too small that it cannot leave an imprint on this world."
The comments after TMZ posted the pictures were harsh. Everything from, "This is wrong. SO wrong" to "That is disgusting!"
I see nothing disgusting about them. Sure they are hard to look at and imagine the life that never will be, but there's nothing easy about miscarriage. It's one of the most heartbreaking things a family can go through, and unless you have been there yourself under the exact same set of circumstances, you have no right to judge.
The pictures aren't gruesome, even though TMZ put a huge yellow warning across the slideshow stating: "WARNING: IMAGES MAY BE DISTURBING." What's disturbing about a parent wanting a reminder of the life they carried and dreamed about for months? How are these any more gruesome than an open casket at any funeral?
Seeing this family grieve so openly through the service and pictures is also comforting for many women who haven't done so for their own miscarriage losses. Many of us just suffer in silence as the world moves on without the babies we once dreamed would be in it. As Michelle said of some of the women who had suffered miscarriages and showed up for the memorial:
They told me, "I felt like this was a service for my little one, I needed to be here today." I am so thankful that God brought us together, they were hugging me and telling me it reached their hearts for their own babies.
Best wishes to the Duggars as they continue their grieving process ... in whatever way helps them get through this trying time.
What do you think of the pictures of Jubilee the Duggars shared at the memorial service?
Image via TLC