Oct. 15 is not usually a date I forget.

For many moms or parents who have experienced miscarriages or infant loss, there are dates that are forever etched in their minds. It might be a due date that was never met, the date of an ultrasound where there was deafening silence without a heartbeat, or the day a baby was born — or lost.

For me, there are several dates, but one has always served as a personal, silent reminder of my experience through miscarriages: Oct. 15, which is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day.

Only this year, I forgot.

I was reading the morning news last week about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s pregnancy announcement (Yay! Another royal baby!) when I scrolled across an article criticizing the couple’s announcement on such a somber day, a day dedicated to the parents who are grieving the babies they lost. It was then that it hit me what the date actually was. To the Duke and Duchess’ credit, I’m not sure they knew what Oct. 15 represented, nor should they. Still, I’m sure it was painful news for some people, as is any pregnancy-related news when a loss is still new and raw.

Around one in four women experience a miscarriage or pregnancy loss in their lifetime. It’s something incredibly common, but all too rarely discussed. In 1988, then-President Ronald Reagan declared the month of October as National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month.

People say that time makes things easier; that you never forget the baby or babies you never got to hold or to raise, but that as the months and years go by, life happens and the pain subsides. In the heartwrenching, gutter of depression immediately after my first miscarriage — I’m not sure I would have believed it to be true. But it’s been eight years since that first loss, and almost five years since my second. There are times I’m reminded of what could have been, or what was. We planted three trees in our front yard after our neighborhood in the April 27, 2011, tornado, taking down all our mature oaks. In their place, we planted two Willow Oaks, representing our oldest son and daughter, and a red oak, for that first baby we lost. Sometimes I look at that red oak, especially during the fall when its leaves turn flaming red. And I remember.

But then, we never planted any more trees, not for our second miscarriage or after the birth of our youngest daughter. Not enough yard, I suppose. Time went on. We got busy with soccer games and first days of kindergarten, with homework and Cub Scouts. Life is funny, that way.

Whether it’s Oct. 15, the entire month of October, or any other date, it’s important to recognize the impact that miscarriages and infant loss have on people’s lives. For so many moms like myself, a miscarriage or pregnancy loss scars you forever. It’s an experience that never fully goes away; it’s always with you.

And yet, time does heal old wounds. And sometimes, you do forget.

— Lydia Seabol Avant writes The Mom Stop for The Tuscaloosa News in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Reach her at lydia.seabolavant@tuscaloosanews.com.