I’m always inspired by stories of people taking the very worst situations and turning them into something good. That is the case with today’s organization.
In 2005, Cheryl Haggard gave birth to her son Maddux, who had a condition called myotubular myopathy. He wasn’t able to breathe, swallow or move on his own and after six days, Cheryl and her husband made the impossible decision to take him off life support. Before he was taken off the machines that sustained his life, the Haggards called in photographer Sandy Puc to take some photos. Sandy took photos of the couple with their son while he was on life support and after he had all the tubes and wires removed.
The Haggards cherished those photos as a reminder, not of their tragic loss, but of the time they got to spend with their beautiful son. That is when Cheryl and Sandy decided to establish a non-profit organization that could provide the same service to other families dealing with infant loss. They called their organization Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep, after the children’s bedtime prayer.
This cause hits me particularly close to home because my best friend suffered the loss of her first son when she went into labor prematurely. She went through hours of labor and delivery and only got to spend precious little time with him. I didn’t know her then and I didn’t go through that experience with her, but we have talked about it a lot and not a day goes by that I don’t think of her son. He is a part of her family even though he’s not here with us now and I’m so sad that I will never get to know him.
My friend has no pictures of her son. She didn’t want them and I can understand that. But I can also understand people who do want them. I can understand how seeing those pictures could help you heal from a loss so horrible that I can’t even imagine it. And that is why I think NILMDTS is so great.
All the photography services are provided to the families free of charge. Your donation to this organization allows them to continue to provide this invaluable service to people who might not be able to afford it otherwise. It also helps them get information about their services to hospitals and medical staff who can then pass it along to families in need. Please consider making a donation today to help continue this great work. And if you are a photographer and are willing to donate our time to this excellent cause, please visit the website to find out how you can help.
I wish no family ever needed this service, but I think it’s wonderful that it is there for those who do.