What is Shaken Baby Syndrome?

Each year in the United States alone, medical treatment is sought for an estimated 1,400-1,600 babies who have been shaken. Don’t let your child become just another statistic! Tell everyone who cares for your child “Never shake a baby!”

Sunday, April 25, 2010

4th Annual SBS Vigil News Story

The vigil was a great time for family and friends affected by SBS to gather in support of each other and their children. To watch the news story and read the article on the vigil please click HERE

A big thank you to all of the families and organizations for your support of this event. Here is to next year! Location to be announced June 2010!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

5 years from your passing..

I don't tend to say too much this 36 hour time period because the void that is forever present in my heart remains, and the wound remains open and fresh.. Sometimes I feel I should be positive, and give hope, but today I do not come to you with any of the such. There is nothing worse than loosing your child to murder. Though the situations surrounding could worsen, as I could not have the support that I have beside me.. My mind never wanders far from the day that Madi passed nor the moments or months prior, that include so many feelings... and the memories are forever in my heart..

This is a blog of inspiration, so I feel I must say this. If forgiveness of whom hurt your child or loved one is a burden on your heart and a weight on your shoulders that you can no longer bear, bring the one above in and allow him to handle your heart.

Often times I wish there was much more I could say or bring forth to comfort those in their time of need. It is in a helpless state that I may find the right words, and other times shield my pain by offering a smile to a complete stranger.

For the past 5 years I have learned to "deal" with the fact that Madilyne is gone, and gone forever. I have learned that you never move past the loss of a child, that you only learn how to cope with the grief on a daily basis. It is because of her that I have learned to grow beyond anything I could have ever imagined, and it because of her that I have been blessed with the comfort and love of all of you.

Everyday is a great struggle to keep going, but I have my faith in my heart, and the support of all of you to keep me walking down this path of healing. So on this day I want to say thank you..

On April 14th 2005, Madilyne was pronounced brain dead at exactly 9:50am.. I asked if the doctors were to unhook her from the machines, they would do so and hand her immediately to me.. If she was to take a flight home, I wanted to be as close as I could in that moment to comfort her that I would NEVER let go..

Heres to Madilyne, a little girl that brought so much love and joy into so many lives, and as her legacy lives in, the awareness she brings forth to those in trying times..

All my love to all.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Putting Things In Perspective…

This time of year is particularly difficult on me. Although Spring is just around the corner, and with this season brings the promise of things new and fresh, the anniversary of my daughter’s attack is also accompanying it. I cannot enter into this time of year without reflection on the past, and continued hope for the future. I remember Riley three years ago…playing carefree in the snow on our days off, licking cake batter from a mixer, staying in our pajamas all day, dancing to her songs, coloring and playing play doh. I think about how much our lives have changed in the past three years…our once seemingly carefree lives have been traded in for one engrossed with plans, appointments, and follow-ups. There is always something on our agenda…a letter to write, a phone call to make. We no longer drop things on a moments notice and go…any outing takes careful planning and preparation, even a trip to the store. Some relationships have sadly diminished over time…with our lives “normalizing” (as much as it can be considered “normal”), and the “drama” of the attack and trial fading, some relationships have ceased. I think it is hard for people to understand that we cannot be same people we used to be, because our daughter, and family, takes precedence over everything else. We physically and mentally cannot always be there for others, because everything we have to offer always goes to Riley first. Luckily, we still have wonderful people in our lives that offer us support, understand, and accept this reality…
Even though it is painful to think about who Riley once was, and how our life used to be, in the same thought I realize how lucky we are. Our daughter is still here, and she has made some amazing progress in the past three years, far exceeding the expectations of her doctors and therapists. She never fails to surprise us, and continues to be a source of inspiration, strength, and perseverance. I feel that I have grown as a person and I have accomplished things that I never thought would be possible because of her. As a result of this experience, I feel that I now have a true purpose in life. I am full of hope, and believe in miracles, because I have witnessed one first-hand!!! It amazes me that Riley’s story has touched so many lives, I am so proud and blessed to be her mother!!!
This was not the life we imagined for ourselves when we became parents- the commercial variety, complete with the white picket fence. But, for some reason, this path was chosen for us, so we will embrace it and move forward. My hope for those who know Riley’s story and read my blogs is simple- always appreciate your children, continue to have hope, and know what is important in life. Life can change in an instant, as I experienced first-hand three years ago. Each day is a gift...take each moment and challenge as it comes, and make the best of it.