Where we’re at

More waiting. We met with the BloodCenter of Wisconsin about Owen’s donations/gifts. Filled put all kinds paperwork. Was asked all kinds of family medical questions. (which ironically I found humor in the questions). I’ll be able to hold Owen one last time, without any tubes or wires. I just wish that when I wrap my arms around him, finally, I’ll be able to magically bring him back.

His swelling has gone down and he looks like himself again. My sweet chunky little man. His eyes look like themselves … Still lifeless. He looks like he is sleeping and not so sick. It’s harder now to look like him. I find myself screaming inside to just wake up. Come on Owen, open those eyes, wake up from your long nap.

We took off the EEG things that have cluttered his head. His head was covered in oils and nasties from the glue. The nurse and I washed his head and combed his hair. While as a mom, it was a sigh to finally care for him and clean him, it’s harder to look at him. He’s as I remember him. Peaceful and resting. No longer sick and fighting.

Doug and I have a lot of decisions to make and aren’t really sure where to start. I guess a funeral home is the first step. Then things like what will he wear, what music will we play, photos to put out, verses to read. We should have food and snacks. What car will we drive there, who will watch the babies.

My hope is to have a place to be with him. A park, a path, a bench. Just something that has a plaque. His name, birthday, and death. To continue his story … Even of people don’t know of this blog or what happened on that saturday in may, they will read his name and wonder who he was. Maybe even think of who he might have been, who he could have been.

Like with Owen’s miracle, there will be answers with time. Time for answers. Time for healing and time for peace. Time for crying. Time for anger. To to scream and throw a fit.

My roots are deep in my family, kids and faith. I stand unwavering in the winds of tragedy. My leaves will begin to fall as time wears on. My branches will be bare and small twigs might break off. But as the seasons change and time endures, my leaves will come again. This tree will bloom. Flowers will decorate my branches and my Owen will have a place to perch.

Time. It’s the only part of me that keeps moving without any thought.

Love, Mel


  1. You are simply amazing, like Owen. I hope that one day I can be half the mother you are and have half the faith you have. You are my inspiration. Thank you. I will keep Owen and your family close to my heart for a long time to come.

  2. Hi Melissa,

    You do not know me but I know Melissa Rogers Foley who I believe you knew in IL or who knows someone that you know as well. She posted your blog on her FB page and I have been reading it on a regular basis since yesterday when I first came across her posting. As a Mom to a 2 year old little girl, I can’t imagine the pain you are going through and am beyond words at the moment. I can only hope and pray that Owen will be at peace and that time will ease your pain.

    The reason I am posting this, apart from what I just said is in regard to what you mentioned about having a place with a plaque to Owen. I have two girlfriends who have both lost little boys as infants. One was 3 years ago tomorrow and the other was only 2 months ago. My friend whose little boy would be 3 now has a tree in his memory at the Morton Arboretum here in Lisle, IL and through our playgroup, we have purchased and given to our other friend a tree along the DuPage River whose son would now be 2 months old. Both of the trees have plaques with the names of the boys and the dates of their birth-death. Both of them have said that the trees bring them so much comfort as they can go to them with their other children and as it is a living/breathing thing, they feel that their little boys continue to thrive and grow. I am not sure where you live but wherever it is, I am sure that there is an area that does this sort of thing as well.

    Even though we do not know each other, I will continue to check your blog and keep your precious little boy in my thoughts and prayers.
    Toni Matteson

  3. JoAnne…took the words right out of my mouth. Your faith, Mel, is simply amazing. So many of us call ourselves Christians, but you exemplify the word. I am praying for your strength in the days, weeks, and months to come. The story of your Owen will stay in my heart always. God bless.

  4. Melissa,
    They read the same story of the falling leaves and rebirth at my sister’s funeral seven years ago. There is not a season that goes by that I don’t recall how seasons change and time endures. Still thinking and praying for you and your family Melissa.


  5. I find it so unfair that you are comforting me in a time when I should comfort you. Your faith and beautiful writing has truly comforted me. I was not there that night but wished I was just to offer you and Doug support. Now I am 600 miles away and still can’t be there for you. You have all of my love, support and prayers still. I’ll help you any way I can. Especially if you need an understanding ear.

  6. Mel,
    I am just so sad for you. I will be praying for you over these next few, unbearably difficult hours. I too keep thinking he will wake up, but I know he is no longer there. He is with Our Father, hearing songs from the angels. Today is a day for tears and for hope. Owen’s life had such amazing purpose.

  7. There is an organization that specializes in taking photographs of families and their children. It is called ” Now I lay me down to sleep.” It is a group that provides professional photographers who volunteer their time to photographing the end of life for babies. It may sound morbid but I have seen an example of their work for a friend whose newborn lived for 4 hours. The photos are beautiful and tasteful and she’s glad she has them to look at and share. You can google them to contact someone who could get a photographer to you- asap. You may be glad you did it. Someone at Children’s must know about this too. I pray for you in these last moments with Owen.

  8. I’m so sorry to hear about your precious little boy. He will always be an angel looking over you and your family. Time heals all….so does faith.

  9. Sweet baby Owen…for such a short life you certainly are a huge hero. God had big plans for you…and you didn’t let him down! Now if only that didn’t mean your family had to hurt so much! I’m proud of you, your fight, and your mommy’s undying faith and strength!

  10. Melissa—I second what Teri said. I wish I was closer and could help you out during this time, but unfortunately I am 1000 miles away! Please be sure to ask the nurses about this—there are a number of great photographers in the Milwaukee area. Here’s the website. http://www.nowilaymedowntosleep.org/locate_photographer/
    The hospital should be able to coordinate everything and just have the photographer arrive. Sending precious prayers for strength and comfort during this time!

  11. I can’t pretend to understand what you and your family are going through. I have and will continue to pray for your family. I wish there was something I could do to help your family through this tough time, to support you, and to change the news you have recently learned over the last few days. Your family is strong and you will get through this. Owen will never be forgotten and the gift that he will share will always be a special part of another child. I know this is not fair, but this is God’s will for baby Owen. I will continue to fight for a miracle for Owen. Please let me know if there is anything I can ever do to help your family! My mother lost a child to SIDS when he was about 8 months old. If you ever need someone to talk to, please feel free to reach out to her. Love, faith, and strength go out to you all!

  12. I am sure that it is hard to hear talk about peace and angels and heaven when you’ve got a big hole where your heart used to be. I cannot begin to imagine, but pray for you and wish so badly that you did not have to say good-bye to your sweet, sweet Owen. You do not need to stay strong…let us hold you and lift you up. We are all here for you ready to catch your fall!

  13. My heart hurts so much for you ,we planted 2 bleeding heart bushes for my sweet baby boys and they bloom beautiful i also got a tattoo with angel wings and 2 halo’s ,and every year we have there birthday we sing and eat cake we also let balloons go and we all write them a message ,i have a poem that i got from someone and it is so true because it has been a year since my secong loss and i still go back and forth full of emotion .are babies will be playing together and will always know love and warmth in GOD’S hands …Ingredients Experienced:
    14 days of numbness, wishing it was all a dream
    A dash of phone calls & emails to inform others of your loss
    1 week of memorial planning
    1 day of smiling
    2 days of feeling guilty for smiling
    6 months of adjusting to your new normal
    9 months of a roller coaster ride through grief
    3-4 weeks of Anger
    5 months of Tears
    1 month of asking Why Me?
    2 weeks of Anxiety
    3 days of Denial
    3 months of Depression
    A little laughter, then back to sad again
    Just before the 1st year Angel~ Versary, grab 1 month of Depression
    Now that you’ve made it to 1 year you may have had
    Several months of Sadness
    A few weeks of Fear
    Time to gain Compassion
    A few months to find Acceptance
    And an Unlimited amount of missing your angel
    With the above ingredients you can now start preparing for Healthy Grieving
    Mix in many months of counseling and/or talking with those who understand. Blend in being able to share your story without becoming teary eyed. Set aside moments for brief meltdowns, and then stir in the strength to get up and keep going. Add in the possibilities of having more children, knowing your angel will never be replaced. Throw in a pinch of fear to try again. Mix in the realization that there will be no crawling, first steps, first day of school, or graduation. Add the comfort that your angel will never know sickness, rejection, or the pains of this world. Set aside both happy and sad tears and know it’s still ok to cry. Mix in life without your angel then sprinkle in precious memories. Cover with hope that your faith will provide you the strength to continue into progressive healing.
    Progressive Healing is a constant process, so hold on to your memories, cherish your keepsakes, and never be uncomfortable to say “I Have My Very Own Angel’s”..i hope this helps it sure helped me ,i am praying for you and your family ,dont know yall but baby Owen has a place in my heart .

  14. As a mother of 8 month old triplets my heart is just breaking right now for you. You are such a strong person and the fact that you are going to give beautiful pieces of Owen to other families speaks volumes about you and your husband. My thoughts are with you and your family as words are not nearly enough!

  15. You are an amazing writer Melissa. I hope you keep doing this to help you through what lies ahead. You are right. Good things will bloom again and we will all hold Owen in our hearts and our memories. You will find a special place for him in your daily lives and his brothers will know him through this and your memories. You are an amazing, like a strong tree. Even strong trees sometimes need some support to hold them up during particularly windy days. I am a phone call ( or text if you prefer) away. Even when you don’t know what you want to say but know you need someone…just call. Love love love love love to you.

  16. ugh right now I am screaming inside..screaming why did this happen to such a beautiful family & a sweet lil boy..Losing a child is never easy and you have so many questions as to why. My sister lost her son 2 years ago and just hearing his name makes me so sad inside but I hide it from my sister…Because at the time we didn’t know why he was taken but now we do..Had he not have given his life–his sister would not be here..You see my sister had I/C and at 22 weeks her cervix couldn’t hold him and he was stillborn 10 months laters my beautiful niece was born had it not of been for him she wouldn’t be here. There are no right words I’m sorry all day long isn’t going to make you feel better. I will be praying for you all. One last thing my sister had GOD SPEED LITTLE MAN played for my nephews funeral its a very good song.

  17. This is a beautiful song written and recorded by Mandisa. SHe wrote this song for a women who lost her baby.


    All you saw was pain
    All you saw was rain
    But you should see me now

    Moments filled with tears
    Lasted all those years
    Disappeared some how

    You never said goodbye
    On your knees you cry
    You’re still asking why

    But blue has never been bluer
    True has never been truer
    Honey never tasted so sweet
    There’s a song in the breeze
    A million voices in praise

    A rose has never smelled redder
    The sun has never been brighter
    If I could find the right words to say
    If you could look at my face
    If you could just see this place
    You wouldn’t cry for me today

    What you think you see
    Isn’t really me
    I’m already home

    You’ve got to lay it down
    ‘Cause Jesus holds me now
    And I am not alone

    Your faith is wearing thin
    But I am watching Him
    And He is holding you too

    And blue has never been bluer
    True has never been truer
    Honey never tasted so sweet
    There’s a song in the breeze
    A million voices in praise

    A rose has never smelled redder
    The sun has never been brighter
    If I could find the right words to say
    If you could look at my face
    If you could just see this place
    You wouldn’t cry for me today
    You wouldn’t cry for me today

    Oh what may seem like years
    Will just be a moment
    Oh the day will come
    When I’ll show you where you’re going
    I can’t wait to show you

    And blue has never been bluer
    True has never been truer
    Honey never tasted so sweet
    There’s a song in the breeze
    A million voices in praise

    A rose has never smelled redder
    The sun has never been brighter
    If I could find the right words to say
    If you could look at my face
    If you could just see this place
    You wouldn’t cry for me today
    You wouldn’t cry for me today

    You wouldn’t cry for me today
    You wouldn’t cry for me today
    You wouldn’t cry for me today

  18. Mel, you are an inspiration. Your faith is so strong. God’s love is amazing and HE will guide you through what lies ahead. While never having met Owen or the rest of your family, your story has touched my heart. I know that you will miss Owen but take heart in the fact that he will live on in others. We will continue to pray for all of you.

  19. My heart breaks for you and your family. Saying prayers for you. And wishing you strength & peace.

  20. Hi Mel! My name is Carol. I got your website link from a friend of mine on facebook and reading your story just broke my heart. You sound so calm and rational to be going through such a hardship. However please don’t give up on the power of our amazing Lord. Don’t speak of Owen as though he’s already gone, if he is alive, then Hope is still alive. “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.” God bless and I’ll be praying for you and your family! With love, Carol

  21. My heart is heavy as I read your entry Mel. I am praying for you, Owen and your family- Owen’s body may not be with you for much longer BUT his spirit,joy, love and laughter will remain with you now and forever-Owen will not be forgotten- he will live on through you, Doug and his brothers- May God show you peace in your heart in your time of need- love from a Mom in Massachusetts

  22. Praying for you right now & I will continue. May God hold you & your family very close through the coming days/weeks/months.

  23. Mel,
    We have never met but a friend of mine posted your blog on Facebook.
    As a mother, my heart and soul ache for what you are going through.
    As a Christian, I am amazed by your strength and your ability to see God even in this storm.

    Thank you for sharing your story.
    You are obviously an amazing woman and your children are so very fortunate to have you as their Mommy, a woman of strength, a woman of faith, and a woman overflowing with the love of God.

    I am inspired by you and I will keep you and your family in my heart and on my tongue as I pray. There will be healing for you…

  24. Melissa, reading through your posts, it is very obvious what a great Mom you are. And that you have a great family. Then, reading through all the comments it becomes so crystal clear what a special little angel your Owen truly is. He has brought so many people together. People near and dear to you and your family, as well as strangers from all over the world. He has touched all of our hearts and that is a rare and wonderful gift! His story will continue. It will continue through all of our prayers, through the extra kindness we extend to others while thinking of your heartbreak, through his precious brothers, through your memories and your fighting spirit. I have no doubt that you will find many ways to celebrate Owen and honor his legacy for the rest of your life. Owen, know that you are loved by so many people you have never met and that we are all praying for you and your family!

  25. Mel, I am so sorry that you and Doug and the rest of your family are going through this. I am here for you! I feel as though you all have become part of my family. I have laughed at your stories about Jaden, and have cried with the things going on now. I read this last blog entry to my fiance and he was crying. He and I are crying for you.. And knowing that Owen will live on in other children will make us smile again. God is holding Owen for you until you can again someday! Lots of love to you!

  26. You do not know me, but we have a mutual friend and she put this on her FB page. I have prayed over and over for you and your family. I am so heart broken for you all, so I can not imagine the pain and anger you are feeling. Your baby angel Owen is on my mind all day long!! I am so deeply sorry for your loss, but I thank you for writing this as it showed me how precious my boys are too me. I promise to you I will take the extra 5 minutes in the morning to hug them a little longer and tighter and make sure to kiss them every chance I get! You all will be in my prayers today and always as you go through this very difficult time.

    Many Prayers and lots of love!

  27. I’m praying for you and your family. I’ve read through the events of the last few days and my heart is breaking for you. Let God give you the grace to get through these days.

  28. Dear Melissa and family,

    I don’t know you except through your website, but I wanted to tell you that my family is praying for you during your heartbreaking journey. Your strength and faith is amazing.

    “Godspeed (Sweet Dreams)”

    Dragon tales and the “water is wide”
    Pirate’s sail and lost boys fly
    Fish bite moonbeams every night
    And I love you

    Godspeed, little man
    Sweet dreams, little man
    Oh my love will fly to you each night on angels wings
    Sweet dreams

    The rocket racer’s all tuckered out
    Superman’s in pajamas on the couch
    Goodnight moon, will find the mouse
    And I love you

    Godspeed, little man
    Sweet dreams, little man
    Oh my love will fly to you each night on angels wings
    Sweet dreams

    God bless mommy and match box cars
    God bless dad and thanks for the stars
    God hears “Amen,” wherever we are
    And I love you

    Godspeed, little man
    Sweet dreams, little man
    Oh my love will fly to you each night on angels wings
    Sweet dreams

  29. I pray for you, Mel. I am brought to tears with every entry I read. I hope you can find some comfort in knowing how many people are out here thinking about you and your little guy. May you be surrounded by God’s Angels tonight and the days to come.

  30. I am so sorry that little Owen will no longer be with you in the flesh, he will be with you always in spirit. I can’t begin to image what you and your family are going through. It is very apparent that you are a much loved family, now is the time to let your family and friends step up and help you make the decisions you now face. It’s okay to go numb to the world right now and to focus on your faith and your family. God bless you and your family, I know he already has blessed little Owen.

  31. As a fellow angel Mom, I feel for you. I don’t know exactly your feelings as my baby boy was born sleeping so I never got to know him. I can’t imagine getting to know him like you did Owen. You have a long road ahead of you. I know that the pain never fully goes away, you just learn how to deal with it and function on some sort of normal level. I hope it helps you to know that there are many people out there that will think of you often. Owen will ALWAYS be in my prayers. I am sure that my Quincy is up there welcoming Owen to Heaven. Hugs to you.. Also one of my favorite books that someone gave me when I first lost my son was “Mommy please don’t cry” I recommend getting it. It is a story from the child to their mom.

  32. Mel! If you feel you are losing strength, look to all of us around you to give you the strength and carry some of that weight! If the strength you need is to laugh, to cry, to yell or to be silent, look to all around you who love you and are here to hold you up. Owen (with Grandpa Tickley Bear) is smiling down on you and your family, so proud of his mom and how brave and strong you are. His place is right there with you wherever you are! My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family through your loss. Love you hun!

  33. Mel,
    You don’t know me, but Rachel (another triplet mom in Milwaukee) shared your story with me. I’ve been praying and will continue to do so. I wanted to share that as I was driving home from work yesterday, the song “Shine” by David Crowder came on and as the words went to “Shine your Light so I can see” Owen came to my mind and a tear to my eye. The words are beautiful and every time I hear it, I will think of your sweet baby Owen and pray for your peace and comfort in the days ahead.
    Send me a sign
    A hint, a whisper
    Throw me a line
    ‘Cause I am listening

    Come break the quiet
    Breathe your awakening
    Bring me to life
    ‘Cause I am fading

    (Surround me) with the rush of angels’ wings

    (Chorus 1)
    Shine Your light so I can see You
    Pull me up, I need to be near You
    Hold me, I need to feel love
    Can You overcome this heart that’s overcome?

    (Verse 2)
    You sent a sign
    A hint, a whisper
    Human divine
    Heaven is listening

    Death laid love quiet
    Yet in the night a stirring

    (All around) the rush of angels

    Oh, the wonder of the greatest love has come

    (Chorus 2)
    Shine Your light so all can see it
    Lift it up, ’cause the whole world needs it
    Love has come, what joy to hear it
    He has overcome
    He has overcome

    Mel, I pray that you would know the love and the peace that God gives. I pray that you would crawl on His lap and let Him hold you when all you can do is cry in His arms. To God be the glory….somehow….somewhere.


  34. Mel, Laura mentioned Rachel, another triplets mom…I am Rachel’s mom. She got the word out to so many people when she first heard the news that Owen was fighting for his life. Many prayers were prayed for little baby Owen. And now, as I’ve read your blog and the beautiful words you wrote to your precious little boy, I know he is more alive than ever in the arms of our Lord. You have encouraged me in my faith when yours has been tested so drastically. You and your husband and family have my deepest sympathy. I pray God’s comfort over you and that in the coming days and months HE will grant to you that comfort that HE alone can provide, that peace that passes all understanding. Please know there are many who are praying for your sweet family right now. Blessings to you. Deb Payne

  35. I just saw a link from a friend on facebook, and read through your journey, with tears running down my face. You are so strong! I can’t imagine what you are going through, but I am praying for you and your family. My parents are musicians and played and sang for many funerals in our church, and I remember a song that they used for one for a very young child called “Visitor from Heaven” by Twila Paris

    A visitor from Heaven
    If only for a while
    A gift of love to be returned
    We think of you and smile

    A visitor from Heaven
    Accompanied by grace
    Reminding of a better love
    And of a better place

    With aching hearts and empty arms
    We send you with a name
    It hurts so much to let you go
    But we’re so glad you came
    We’re so glad you came

    A visitor from Heaven
    If only for a day
    We thank Him for the time He gave
    And now it’s time to say
    We trust you to the Father’s love
    And to His tender care
    Held in the everlasting arms
    And we’re so glad you’re there
    We’re so glad you’re there

    With breaking hearts and open hands
    We send you with a name
    It hurts so much to let you go
    But we’re so glad you came
    We’re so glad you came

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