I'm going to take you on a little journey to explain what this cause is all about.

Imagine you are in the shoes of my friend Natalie, it took you 5 years to become pregnant. 5 YEARS! But you finally got pregnant with a precious little boy. You are extremely excited and decorate his room beautifully with all the trimmings. You have a scheduled c-section because of a fibroid that is blocking the birth canal. The day before your scheduled c-section you go in for an appointment, the doppler could not find a heart beat.

Imagine being told that your baby is not alive....

then being sent home only to come back the next day to have the c-section. Having to spend over night knowing that your baby was not alive inside of you. THEN to find out that the cord was wrapped around his neck SIX TIMES! All of this would be heartbreaking to say the least.

Time goes on and your heart begins to heal, it never goes away, that ache inside, but you learn to live with it.

About 10 months after all this you find out that you are pregnant again. Hooray! It didn't take 5 years this time. What a relief! Now everything is okay right? WRONG! Every second, every minute that goes by you are deathly afraid you will lose this one too. If it happens to you once, it could happen again. You can't sleep because you are having nightmares of your baby dying. The next 9 months are going to be unbearable.

But...imagine there is something that can help, something that would bring you the peace of mind you need so badly. Something that will make the next 9 months not a living hell. Its called home monitoring and its a service that a phenomenal doctor in Louisiana provides. Dr. Collins has done extensive research into cord accidents and is a huge advocate of raising awareness of cord accidents.

He has found that if you have cord issues once there is a higher chance of having cord problems again, whether the outcome is the same they don't know but are you willing to take that risk without doing everything you can to prevent it?!........No.

You would do all you could to make sure it doesn't happen again.

Dr. Collins has you come to his office in Louisiana and he does an extensive ultrasound that analyzes the cord specifically, where it is and whether its wrapped or knotted. The reason you have to go all the way out there is because there are few doctors that know how to look for the cord and have the necessary experience. After the ultrasound Dr. Collins sends you home with a home monitoring system that looks something like this:

Every night you strap this on and it measures the baby's heartbeat and any contractions you may be having. You monitor for half an hour and then the machine sends the information to Dr. Collins where he receives it on his PDA, the results can also be sent to your local doctor. You and your baby are constantly being monitored and if there is ANY indication that there is a problem you go straight to the hospital at the first sign of trouble. Not later when you haven't felt the baby move for a while and its too late. If there is a significant drop in heart rate you will know right away and go to the hospital. And if you have any worries or fears you can just strap that baby on and be reassured that your baby is doing fine. Can you even begin to imagine the relief this would bring to you? The SANITY that it would bring to both you and your poor husband who has to live with you?

This service is legit. If you don't believe me...let the news and the moms who have gone through it tell you...

End of story.

What I've just told you about isn't a fictional story, it is unfortunately a very real reality for my friend Natalie. She lost her sweet Branson last June and she needs our help.

You see, this service described above isn't cheap. While it would be nice if it could be offered free, the equipment and time of the doctor does cost money.

Its $2,000.

$2,000 that most people at this young age don't just have lying around. Especially not after your husband just graduated, leaving lots of student loans to pay off, and you just made a major move like Natalie and Rob.

So...what can we do to help?

We can donate to the Peace of Mind Fund. Even if its just $5, it all adds up if we can get the word out. Please consider donating and sharing the word with anyone you know. Feel free to post about this on your blog, website, facebook page, wherever! The more that know the better. If you would be willing to post the button you see on the right on your blog that would be wonderful too.

Also, many of you know that I (Amy...Alexis' mommy) sell hairbows and clips and headbands in honor of Alexis and to benefit Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep. Well, after the 10% that goes to NILMDTS, the rest of my proceeds will go to the Peace of Mind fund until we've raised enough. Now, you have to go to Louisiana for the ultrasound between 28-30 weeks. Natalie is 18 weeks right we have about 10 weeks to get enough money!!!! I have seen the power the blogging world has, how the word can be spread, and how people rally around eachother. Well here is our chance. Let the donations begin! :)


Brittanie said...

Wow, this is somehting I wish I could have done myself (as I lost Cora to a cord accident as well). You're so sweet honey! I'll have to see if I can scrape something together for her.

Gruwells said...

This is awesome, Amy! I'll spread the word around here! Love you......

Mesha said...

count me in.

Devin Anderson said...

Thank you for doing this for my sister. God bless you!

Shauna said...

I do not know either of you personally but I am so touched by your story and your heart to help others in the midst of your own recent loss. I pray that others will to see your good works and support this cause. "By there fruits, ye shall know them." You have shown us your fruit, and it is good. I pray for you and this cause. Thanks, Shauna

Sara said...

What a wonderful website! I found this through kellyskornerblog link for prayer requests. I just donated and wrote a blog entry to get the word out. I also posted the link on facebook. I live in Louisiana relatively close to Dr. Collins and am a labor and delivery nurse. Please let natalie know she can email me anytime!

Steph*MD said...

I lost my son to a cord accident in my 9th month, 9/11/99. I was pregnant 4 mths after we lost Joshua. It was the some of the darkest times of my life - I was still grieving our son & I was pregnant again which is what I wanted, but so scared to love this new baby because of the possibly of loss, wanted to love it so much, so worried that it could all happen again - I was a nut case. I got a new dr with the 2nd pregnancy and he was wonderful, he was able to label me as high risk for the insurance company, therefore have non stress tests every week & sonograms every 2 weeks after my 28th week. At 37 weeks I had what had become a routine sonogram & the cord was around my daughters neck! (the risk is increased once it has happened previously) Within hours I was in the hospital for an induction and monintoring. She was born healthy & without any problems during the birth. We are blessed to have her. She is 8 1/2 years old now! I truly know what they are going through & I hope that my small donation can help this family since they do not have the pleasure of insurance or being labled high risk like I was. Praying for a safe delivery. God Bless.

chadlaurie said...

I found your site from Kelly's Corner and when I read you were going to see a specialist that deals with cord accidents..... I was HOPING,PRAYING it was Dr Collins! We lost our son Jayce at 32 wks to a cord accident in Aug of 2007. We also found Dr Collins and because of him we had our rainbow baby Kaitlyn in 2008. I can not say enough AMAZING things about him and the services he offers. Please feel free to email me if you have any questions about the trip to see him or the monitoring itself.

MasonTripletsPlusOne said...

I have lost 3 babies, but none full term, I can not even begin to imagine the pain. I am now the mother to a four year old and 11 month old triplets. Money is very tight around here, but I read you blog and was very happy to donate $5.00. I hope it helps bring you cloer to your goal!!!


Amber Schmidt said...

Hi Rob and Natalie! This is Amber Schmidt. A friend of mine sent me the link to this site because she said she knew in light of other things that have happened she feared that people would become weary of giving to bloggers. First off I have to say that hearing that you are 18 weeks pregnant literally brought me to tears! I just did a NILMDTS session yesterday and was thinking of you because I was wearing branson's little booties on the bracelet.

My friend said she knew that she had seen a "Branson" on my fridge (birth announcement- and YES its still there...) and thought WOW ... that is an original name. Turns out that this and the little angel on my fridge are one in the same.

I actually have another friend, Blair, who has been to Dr. Collins after her sweet baby James died of a cord knot. I am praying that he will be as much comfort to you guys as he was to her!

So... this is my note to all reading... PLEASE open your hearts. Rob and Natalie are a REAL couple, I have stood in their hospital room and shared a precious few moments with them and their beautiful angel branson as a part of the team of photographers who had the privilege of creating their NILMDTS portraits. My heart still aches and I will never forget them. Every single day I stare at my kitchen wall at a beautifully framed piece of art that says "Family... a journey to forever." I know that Rob and Natalie will be reunited with their sweet boy again some day but for now I pray with ALL my heart that their arms will be filled with a sweet warm baby and that they can expand their family with as little worry as possible.


T Sharee said...

Just wanted to let you know about the blog fundraiser that my new ETSY friend, Leslie, and I are doing for Natalie and Rob. Please check out my blog for all the details!

Ashley said...

Hi, i would love to help out. I do personalized shirts (applique and embroidery) and if you need another item to add to your list i will gladly donate an item...My shirts are custom orders only, but i would love to work something out with you to help out your cause. i have a two year old that was born emergency c-section because his heart rate was rapidly droping....come to find his cord was not wrapped just VERY short. They said if i had came in to the hospital 5 min later i could have lost him. They said it was just a "fluke" This is terrifying to think about! I will be praying for Natalie and her little one. I wish them the best! God bless -Ashley from Under The Polka dot Tree

MamabearMills said...

wow that is amazing! i am donating right NOW!