June 16, 2006, Newsletter Issue #116: A Personal Story Part One

Tip of the Week

After August 30, 1996, my life would never be the same. That is the day that the world played a cruel joke on me, the day that my son died. He was ten weeks old. I was nineteen years old when my life was devastated by Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. The next day, as I was making funeral arrangements to bury my son, I turned twenty.

When I close my eyes, my mind replays the day that left me weeping, with empty arms. My son and I were on a two hour trek to his orthodontist appointment. He was born with a cleft lip and cleft palate and wore a retainer for corrective purposes. Five minutes before we entered town, I looked into the rear view mirror. I saw a beautiful baby boy looking back at me, and smiling.

We reached our destination, and I went to get my son. By the look of him, I knew something was terribly wrong. I grabbed Zachary, clutching him to my chest, and ran into the pediatric center for help. Zachary was taken from me by a young nurse. The doctors and nurses there tried to bring my little boy back to me as I spoke to a policeman. My little baby boy was ambulanced to the ER of the local hospital. The policeman gave me a ride, and when I arrived, I received the news of my sonīs death.

I was in shock. I immediately started to sob, scream, yell, and deny that this was happening. It couldnīt be. Things like this didnīt happen to me, they happened to other people. After one of the kind nurses calmed me down some, I heard a baby cry. IT WAS ZACHARY! IT HAD TO BE! Then, they told me another child had just come in. I felt the initial pain all over again. I waited at the hospital for my brother to pick me up. I was in no shape to drive.

(as told by a friend, part 1)

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