Monday, December 15, 2008

What Can I Do In Honor or Memory of My Cherub?

"What can I do?" - we get asked that almost every day. Parents of survivors feel the need to "give back" for the blessing of having their cherub still here. Grieving parents feel the need to honor and remember their cherubs' lives. Having a baby born with Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia is hard, very hard - no matter the outcome, it is not easy by any means. But with the need to take care of, protect, and advocate for our children comes a great responsibility to help others who will follow in our footsteps. Most parents who have dealt with CDH feel this way. Sometimes, deep in grief or deep in doctors appts and hospitalizations - just thinking about helping others can feel so overwhelming when we are barely keeping our own heads above water.

We understand this at CHERUBS. This is why our organization is a group made of ALL of us. A group. An organization. A collection of more than 1 person working together for a common goal. Helping families of children born with Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia.

Every member helps in their own ways:

* Sharing their stories.
* Sharing photos.
* Being there for other members to lend a shoulder or an ear.
* Adding research links to our site.
* Participating in medical research.
* Donating to help fund services or research.
* Dropping off CHERUBS brochures to their hospitals.
* Raising awareness on the internet through their sites and blogs.
* Promoting awareness through wearing our ribbons or awareness items.
* Signing the Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia Awareness Trademark petition.
* Protecting other CDH parents by informing them.
* Standing up to those who wish to take away rights to raise CDH awareness in honor / memory of our children. Standing up for our children!
* Volunteering at CHERUBS to help with any number of events or fundraisers.
* Participating in events.
* Holding events such as bake sales, blood drive, awareness walks, balloon releases, car shows, formal events, sports tournaments and more.
* Donating items to Gabe's Gifts
* Donating baskets to the Angel Ball
* Being involved in the CDH community
* Taking a stand against CDH

We are all strong, all of us. No matter the outcome or circumstances. We all have something to offer the CDH families who come behind us. We are all responsible for helping them in some way. Informing new / expectant families. Protecting them from misinformation or being taken advantage of during the hardest times in their lives. Making sure they have all the information they need about CDH. Making sure they have support from people who have been there and understand - no matter where their journey leads - we understand.

"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" - GOD

We owe all the new and expectant parents an easier path than the ones we had before us. If each of us makes it easier, maybe someday we can remove the path altogether.

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