There is no larger fear than the thought of losing a child. I remember not sleeping the first week I brought Little Man home and I just watched him all night long in his bassinet to make sure he was breathing. After that first week, I thought “ok, he’s ok, sleep when the baby sleeps like the books tell you” (yea, right). I talked myself out of buying the crib monitor that detects movement and has an alarm. I told myself that he’d be just fine. Then came the extra long naps during his growth spurts, and I’d find myself checking, double checking or sometimes just watching him sleep. It’s my worst fear that he’ll just stop breathing. From the other mom blogs and Facebook groups out there, I began to realize this fear was normal and I should relax. My Little Man is happy, healthy and strong. I should stop wasting energy on such a silly fear. My fears are just things that happen to the people in the SIDS brochure or on the news on the other side of the country.
Until it isn’t. And it happens to someone you know and love.
This summer I learned about SUDC – Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood. According to SUDC.org, SUDC is “the sudden and unexpected death of a child over the age of 12 months, which remains unexplained after a thorough case investigation is conducted.” It’s heartbreaking and life changing and the most terrible, unfair, devastating thing that could possibly happen. Most day’s I still don’t believe it happened to friends I love, to a two and a half year old little girl I had just played with two weeks prior. It still doesn’t seem real.
I’ve felt useless and helpless to make anything better, because, frankly, there’s not much I can do, other than be there; be supportive; offer help or assistance with the little things; give hugs, send text messages (which I still need to do more often); pray. It’s made me both more protective and less protective as a mother. I’ve become aware that I cannot control everything, even if I wanted to. I cherish and am thankful for each and every morning and the start of a new day with Luke. I both celebrate every day and am sad everyday that I get to do something with Little Man that my friends will never get to do again. I am aware each day how fragile our world is and am more present in the moments I spend with my son. If we are not guaranteed a tomorrow, I’m going to make today count – in every little way.
And since I feel like there’s nothing I can do in the big picture to fix anything, I’m putting energy and effort into a small thing to help, even if its just a little. Many of you know I’ve started making custom onesies. The Oktoberfest ones I made were a big hit and it got me thinking… I could do this. I could make all sorts of them and maybe people will buy them. And if people are willing to buy them, then it should also be for a good cause.
And so the Sea of Support collection was born! Its inspired by and dedicated to the life of a beautiful, fun, innocent little girl who loved the ocean more than anything and who wanted to be a mermaid. The collection is made up of happy and fun sea creature friends, including a blonde little mermaid and a red head mermaid, a narwhal, a whale and a dolphin.
A portion of each one sold will go to http://www.sudc.org to support their mission and programs. The first donation will be made in December on her birthday. If you would like to make a donation of your own, or learn more about the SUDC Program, please visit their website www.sudc.org. If you’d like to order a onesie or toddler T, please click here.
Thanks for reading.