When my son was assaulted 10 years ago, as many of you know, I had not really heard of Shaken Baby Syndrome. After hearing my son was assaulted and suffered from Shaken Baby Syndrome, then I remember hearing about Matty Eappean that had been shaken and murdered by the British nanny. I remember watching it on television and thinking how horrible, how vicious.
It never crossed my mind that the man I was married to would do such a thing. This was a very hard time for me. After my son was released from the hospital and we moved in with my parents, I was suffering horribly from depression and really wanted to talk to others that knew what I was going thru. But there was no one I knew that had been thru what we had. I looked around our area, but nothing. I talked with the District Attorney Victim Advocate , they referred me to some local domestic violence resources, but it just was not the same.
So I took my search to the internet. I was lucky to find a group of family members that had children that were victims. Both angels and survivors. It was a email support list, and it really was very helpful for me. I was able to talk with people that had been where I was, had lived thru this horrible crime, and those who suffered terribly with the loss of a child.
I reached out to family members, and they reached back. I cant say thank you enough to all the family members of SBS victims out there for providing support and lending an ear, and for helping others.
As we neared the trial, everyone was very supportive, and they all celebrated with me when there was a guilty verdict. For sentencing, many members of my extended SBS family actual wrote on behalf of Kyle to the Judge who was sentencing the child abuser. The stories that these families provided, the letters of support for an exceptional sentence, I believe were vital in getting an exceptional sentence for my sons abuser.
In the years since, I have continued to try and raise awareness like so many of you, and have tried to turn our sadness into some good for others.
Although I have not “met” in person most of the SBS family I have made, I do feel that they are my friends, they are my extended family. I love and value each one. I am so thankful for all of you. Thank you for sharing with me. Thank you for being happy for me that my son survived. Sometimes I feel so guilty that I am one of the lucky ones that not only has a survivor, but a highly functioning survivor. And so many families lost their babies, or have survivors who have many more challenges then we face. I will try not to feel guilty in the future, and I hope I never hurt anyone while talking about Kyle, his survival and the challenges we face. I am very thankful to still have him.
Thank you all for your support. I hope to be of support for others here. I look forward to making more friendships and to hopefully be able to go to the vigil this year to meet you all. I wasn’t able to attend last year, going to try my hardest for next year.
Thank you for the friendship we have, or yet to have as we travel this road together!