Heaven's Hummingbirds

Heaven's Hummingbirds Heaven's Hummingbirds

 

 

A DREAM FOR EMPATHY

When we were in the hospital facing this unbearable pain and impossible decisions, we so desperately wanted to talk with someone who had been through this unimaginable circumstance we were facing. But everywhere we asked, we were told, there was no one.  We had many wonderful doctors, nurses and social workers who provided us sympathy, but none had been through what we were facing. What we needed, what we so desperately yearned for was empathy….

Out of desperation, I asked my dad if he’d be willing to share his story.  My dad had experienced the loss of his first son, Joey. But he never spoke of it…! All I knew was that he had a son, his name was Joey and at 2 1/2 months old...he died.  I fully expected my dad to say no; but, when I asked, he paused...and in that moment, it was 47 years earlier and my dad was right back there again walking through the grief, immersed in that experience with Joey.  

And then something absolutely incredible happened...as my dad shared his story, he was healing as he was helping my husband and I receive the empathy we so desperately needed.  We were hearing from someone who had been through it and survived. We were looking into the eyes of someone who knew the intensity of the pain and the overwhelming feeling that you don’t believe that you will endure this.  Who knew intimately the part of you who believes wholeheartedly that you will die too, right along with your baby, and even the part of you who wants to. 

Connecting with someone who had been there gave us hope that we might endure this...gave us a small light in the darkness, and reminded us that we were not alone. And neither are you…. Heaven’s Hummingbirds seeks to be a safe haven where those who are suffering can run and be heard, be seen and their babies be honored.  Together...we can experience healing in the hope...peace in the pain and hope, through empathy. 

2021 Annual Priorities:

There are three important initiatives for 2021

  1. Providing Empathy -  We are here, ready to connect with you and let you know that you are not alone. Through our support group and its expanding reach, Heaven's Humminbirds seeks to provide parents who are facing the loss of a baby with access to other parents who have been through this experience. All parent and/or nurse facilitators have gone through a vetting process, completed training and education on grief support, been certified as a grief counselor through Hospice of the Valley, and have completed their own grief work. As a bereaved parent, you can reach out directly via email or through our Facebook page anytime. We also have a private Facebook group run by bereaved parents for bereaved parents as well. * Please note in person support groups will not be offered during the COVID-19 pandemic and will occur via virtual video meeting. 
  2. Strengthen the Bridge from Hospital to Home - This project provides continuing support on your grief journey through our Resource Guide for Families. This is an online, central resource with up-to-date information, links, shared and a platform for parents to connect. Our goal is to help bridge the gap between the support received in the hospital and being at home solo, where people can feel very isolated in their grief. We will include everything from grief support and counseling contacts to funeral and burial support to financial support for medical bills, as well as memorial events and keepsakes.  
  3. Financial Support Connection - We help to fill this gap in two ways: first, through ensuring that parents are connected with the organizations that are already offering financial support. This includes ensuring that hospitals and those on the front lines can provide parents with application forms and other required materials to receive financial support. Second, we will partner with a local funeral home to receive discounted rates on burial expenses and have set aside funds to support families from CRMC and MGMC, especially at year’s end when other organizations have run out of funding.

Would you like to help or partner with us in these priorities?  We’d love that! Please email us at heavenshummingbirds@dignityhealth.org or message us on Facebook.

 

 

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