Our Story

After a perfectly healthy pregnancy, nine days before Lincoln’s due date at a routine appointment, we heard these three words— “There’s no heartbeat”.

We were in shock. My husband sat there, not fully registering what had just happened. He asked her, “What did you say?” The sonographer repeated, “there’s no heartbeat.”

We were in disbelief and completely devasted, not understanding how this was even possible. Up to this point, Lincoln and I hadn’t experienced any complications. After all, his room was ready for him and his clothes were hung in his closet. Our bags were packed for the hospital and we simply had two remaining routine appointments until David and I and our families would get to meet him. Instead, we sat in the ultrasound room and discussed what had just happened with our doctor. It seems so obvious to the observer, but in the moment, as the doctor relayed, I would still need to deliver Lincoln.

We left our doctor’s office and headed home to get our bags. We already had Lincoln’s car seat in our car, anxiously awaiting his arrival. Before we left for the hospital, David took the car seat out, as we couldn’t fathom coming home from the hospital with an empty car seat.

Once at the hospital, as I was checking in, David called our families. They knew Lincoln was due soon and were perhaps anticipating this call was the good news. Instead, David shared that Lincoln had gone to be with Jesus. As tears flowed, they all said that they were packing their bags and would head to the hospital, several hours for all of them.

I was given the option to have a C-section, but I wanted to give birth to Lincoln as planned. After 12 hours of labor, I gave birth to our beautiful little boy on April 13th, 2018 at 8:09 am. He was 9 pounds and 22 inches. By this time, our families were next door in a family suite. My sister-in-law recalls knowing that Lincoln had been born, because instead of hearing him cry after he was born, she heard me cry. He was born still, but still born.

I continued to weep as they put Lincoln on my chest. I wanted to hold him forever. Once they evaluated Lincoln, they brought him back to us in a bassinet on wheels. They explained to us that this was a Caring Cradle and would give us three days with Lincoln. This gave us time with Lincoln that we would never get back. We had three days to love on him, swaddle him, sing to him, get pictures with him, check on him during the night, and time for our families to do the same.

As we learned within our hospital stay, we were the first family to use this Caring Cradle and it was the first of its kind in Ohio. Taylor Cottle, whose precious daughter, Hadley, was born sleeping two years prior, had donated this Caring Cradle to Miami Valley South. She had also put together a box of items and letter that would help us through our hospital stay. Before we left the hospital, we knew that we wanted to create a non-profit in Lincoln’s name, donate a Caring Cradle to another local hospital, and donate comfort packages to each family whose children were born sleeping.

With the help of so many generous family members, friends, colleagues, and friends of friends, we donated a Caring Cradle in Lincoln’s name to Miami Valley Hospital in August of 2018. We also drop off 10 comfort packages at a time to the hospital that each family receives as they use Lincoln’s cradle. Lincoln’s bedroom in our home was bunny themed, as an April baby, so we naturally decided on Lincoln’s Bunnies as our non-profit. We also now mail a Lincoln’s Bunny and personalized card to families around the country and world that have experienced infant loss.

At Lincoln’s Bunnies, we believe that no parent should leave empty handed. Our humble attempt at including a Lincoln’s Bunny in comfort packages and mailing them to families that reach out, is an attempt to allow families some comfort as they hold this soft bunny and head out into the world without their child in their arms.

To date, we have placed a Caring Cradle and 40 comfort packages in Miami Valley Hospital and have mailed 93 Lincoln’s Bunnies and personalized cards to families as far west as California, as far east as New York, and several to Canada. We continue to raise money to place a Caring Cradle in another local Dayton hospital and for comfort and care packages.

For there is no footprint so small that it does not leave an imprint on this world. Lincoln’s length of his life does not measure the significance of his life, and while his earthly body isn’t with us, he is still very much with us. There’s not a day that goes by that we do not think and talk about him.

Simply put, our goal at Lincoln’s Bunnies is to remember every child and to bring hope and joy to grieving families who experience infant loss.

“Every good & perfect gift is from above…”
– James 1:17