From the moment Jen found out she was pregnant she was in love. It was this love that helped sustain her though what could easily be called the most challenging time in her life.
Jen and her husband Patrick found out early on in the pregnancy that their son Dylan would have many challenges. Jen’s response was, “even if I only had minutes or days, I would be carrying my baby as long as he’d let me. He deserved that much.”
That attitude of persistence continued through her pregnancy until at 36 weeks she was taken in for an emergency c-section. On August 14th, 2011 Dylan was born. He let out two cries to let his parents know of his arrival and was rushed to the NICU at Wisconsin Children’s Hospital.
Dylan was born with a clift lip and palette, an omphalocele and eyes that were not fully formed and did not function. There is no diagnosis for Dylan's condition, so doctors have labeled it only as 'Dylan Syndrome'. With all of these challenges, Jen says, “Dylan knew love, and that's all he knew. And it poured out of him to you.”
All throughout Dylan’s short life, Jen did her best to provide the best for him. The best attitude, never was there any sorrow or anger in Dylan’s NICU room and of course Jen provided him the best nutrition; her breast milk.
After Dylan’s passing a nurse at Wisconsin Children’s Hospital reach out to the Indiana Mothers’ Milk Bank about the possibility of donating Jen and Dylan’s excess milk. IMMB has received 2,444 ounces from Jen and Dylan.
“Donating my milk was just the right thing to do. If I can help one baby, I feel like I did something special. And in all honesty, it's really Dylan helping those other babies. He was a very special baby and I am reminded of that daily“, Jen said of her reasons for donating.
Jen and Patrick started a team for March of Dimes named Devoted to Dylan. Currently they are the number one team in Wisconsin and one of the top 10 in the United States. They have raised $20,000 for the March of Dimes. Their goal was $750. “If that doesn't tell you how special Dylan was and is, I don't know what will.”
We here at IMMB are so touched by stories like these. If you have a story you would like to share with us, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.