Thursday, May 24, 2012
Pushing Forward For My Bug
At first when I lost my son I was scared to tell people his cause of death. I just wanted to say that it was SIDS. i was scared that people would judge me, or call me a bad mom. I realized within the days following my son’s death that that wouldn’t do me any good, do his memory any good, and it wouldn’t do any good to the children in the world whose parents don’t know the dangers of unsafe sleep. I decided to tell people the truth, hoping that they would be affected by it, that they would learn from it, and share it with others, and they would change their unsafe practices for my bug. It has since been my goal to spread the word about the importance of safe sleep practices, hoping that each child saved would forever carry a little piece of my bug in their heart forever, weather they know that his story saved their life or not. I have searched high and low and done a lot of research about what to do and what not to do to keep your child safe. I have found a lot of groups that have pulled me through this, showing me that I am not alone, that my child is not the only child lost this way, and in knowing that I am not the only one who is going forward in honor of their child. I have met so many moms who have been where I am, wishing they had done something different, wishing they were more educated, wishing they could change the past. Finding these groups has been an amazing form of support. I also was connected with an organization in my local area who works with parents like me who have lost their child suddenly. They do such wonderful things, like educating new parents and caregivers, and even donating cribs to struggling families who would otherwise bed-share or put their child in an unsafe environment to sleep. They do so many amazing things and we are even working on plans to organize an event in honor of my bug. I have decided to do a motorcycle run in his honor, and raise money to help educate parents on safe sleep practices, the dangers of unsafe sleep, and the facts that this does happen. My son is the proof of that, he is gone because of it, because i had him in my bed to feed him, he is gone forever. And not just the risks of bed-sharing, but the risks of cuddling up with you baby on your chest on a couch, bed or recliner, the risks of having teddy bears and crib bumpers, and the dangers of blankets with your baby. There is so much that I thought I knew, and I am realizing so much that I was wrong. And now I am making it my life-long goal to tell every parent I can about the risks that I was unaware of, the things that I didn’t know, the things that cost me my baby. Last week I was given the opportunity to speak at my old high school about safe seep practices and how they can save lives. It was an amazing opportunity to be able to reach parents and caregivers so early, before they even become parents and caregivers. A lot of the kids were surprised at how much they didn’t know, and how wrong they were about a lot of things. A lot of them had some really good questions, and were very touched by my message. I visited one of my old teachers when I was there, a teacher who didn’t even teach any of the classes I spoke too. (she is a science teacher and I spoke to the child development and advanced child development classes) She informed me that the kids in her class were talking about me and my message and my sweet bug too, a few days after my visit. That was such an amazing feeling, knowing that I touched them so much that their conversation topic turned to my story a few days later, amidst all the drama that comes along with high school, they weren’t thinking about who was kissing who under the bleachers, they were thinking about me, and my bug, and how they can save the life of a child. It was such an amazing feeling knowing that I made a difference, just a step in my journey to save lives for my bug.