Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Amazed and Astounded

I am absolutely overwhelmed by the response to my post "A Letter to My Doctor". In less than two weeks, it has over 46, 000 views. It has been shared by several organizations on Facebook including the pages of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth, Kaleb Kares, The Sweet Pea Project, Brona: A Memior, The Florida chapter of the TEARS Foundation, and Footprints on Our Hearts. I have been contacted by countless doctors and L/D nurses who would like to share the letter with their staff, and I have been asked to speak at a few places as well. The Florida chapter of TEARS would like me to help them start a blog. Last, but certainly not least, I have been contacted by Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep. That development is still under wraps, but I am really excited about it!

It is amazing how quickly your life can change in such a short amount of time. Clearly, my life has been drastically altered since that Monday afternoon in February of 2013, and since that terrible day, I've known I needed to keep Kenley's memory alive. It is my job as a mother to make sure my children make their mark on this world. Since Kenley isn't here to do that, it is my job to do it for her.

When I first lost her and began looking around for support, I found several moms who had started non-profit organizations on behalf of their child. Cherishing the Journey, The Brianna Marie Foundation, and Avery's Light are all charities started by the women I have met on this road. I often thought about how I would start a non-profit. What could I do? What would my organization take care of? I knew I was passionate about being vocal about stillbirth and getting information into the hands of the people who can make a difference during delivery, but I didn't know where to even start.

When Allison asked me to give my input to the presentation for the VCOM medical students, I jumped on it. This was my chance to educate a few people about a cause close to my heart. When I shared it to my loss group, the response was immediate and intense. It struck a chord with everyone. They shared it with their friends. I posted it on my page and it was shared over a dozen times in an hour, and then it just spiraled outward. In my little corner of the world, I went "viral", and I still cannot believe it.

Maybe I don't have the organizational skills to start a charity, but I do have the skills to write. With the help of social media, my message has been seen by over 46,000 people. 46,000 people have been touched by my words. 46,000 people will bring that message into their own circle. I am in awe of what has been happening since that first upload.

To keep the momentum going, and to add to the impact, I am in the process of creating a video of the original post. I have recorded myself reading the letter and have asked for, and been recieving pictures of, our sweet babies. As of right now, I have over 60 women who have emailed me their pictures. Some are ones I know and some are complete strangers who read the letter and heard about the project. 60 families (and counting) who have been touched by infant loss who just want their story told and their baby remembered. So, I will tell it. I will remember them. I will make sure this message finds its way into the hands of the people who need to hold it, and into the hearts of the people who need to feel it.

This is what I can do. This is what I will do. I will do it for them...I will do it for her.
Kenley Evelyn Wood, my dear, darling Little Ninja, this is your mark.

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