I often think about how lucky some people are. They get pregnant easily, multiple times, they have healthy pregnancies, picture perfect births and then directly after, they bring their newborns home to begin their lives together. To those people, it’s just the way it’s supposed to be.
In my life, my experience has been something different. My niece was born at 32 weeks, my nephew had a collapsed lung, both of my children were pre-mature and had to be intubated to help them BREATHE, my sister lost a baby at 22 weeks and also at 17 weeks and then, we lost James and Jake at 19 weeks.
All of these losses and all of these difficult beginnings are impossible to understand. Especially when you are surrounded by people who have not only never experienced anything “abnormal” but who also have no idea how lucky they really are.
Ariel and Racecar both had a scary start to their lives, both were intubated and in the NICU for the first few weeks of their little lives. With both of our babies, we left the hospital with an empty car seat, fastened securely in the back seat, while our babies were in the care of a NICU team.
Without the March of Dimes, their research and their commitment to bringing healthy babies into this world, we just aren’t sure where Ariel and Racecar would be without them.
Losing James and Jake, combined with Ariel and Racecars’ troubled start, we can’t help but feel like the March of Dimes NEEDS us, just like we needed them. After losing James and Jake, the March of Dimes reached out ot me in a very thoughtful way, offering their resources and support. I can tell you from experience that this organization is vital and needs thoughtful, caring people, just like you and me, to help continue it’s mission.
We have these things that James and Jake touched. They PHYSICALLY touched. Even though they could not feel it and even though the moment was so brief, we have these items to hold forever.
We have this box of memories, which I open only when I can handle the darkness and the depths of our grief. Which is very, very rare.
We have our love for them which is bigger than you could ever comprehend, even though we never spoke, we never looked into each other’s eyes, we still loved so much, we still connected. We still had our dreams.
And we have this drive to make sure that our children, our grandchildren and our great-grandchildren never, ever have to experience the pain that we’ve endured in our lives.
I often think about how lucky people are, that they never had to experience the complications and difficulties that pregnancy and motherhood can bring. But more so, I think about how lucky I am that I know the difference, that I know just how lucky I really am. And because of that, I’m going to give back.
Please don’t wait for something to happen directly to you or a loved one. Become an advocate for our future. Please make a donation, even $5 makes a difference. Our team goal this year is $5,000, we are halfway there.
If you live in Northwest Indiana and would like to walk on Sunday, April 26th, we would be honored to have you walking with us, in honor of James and Jake, Lydia Grace, my niece and nephew and a fellow walker’s beautiful daughter, Allison Jane. And Maddie.
Sometimes, you’re the lucky one. And sometimes, you’re not.