I count my blessings.

29 Jul

Friday, July 29, 2011

My baby Jordan would have turned 2 this past June. And I find it amazing how time flies by so quickly. The summer months are filled with highs and lows for the Connell family. We celebrated or third child’s first birthday this past weekend with family and friends. And on August 21st it will be 2 years since we lost Baby J. As I type this I am filled with emotions of daily life.

I met a lady who is interested in helping us raise funds for the foundation this morning. She made a comment about how strong I am and how easy it is for me to talk about Jordan’s death. What I wanted to tell her is that I am not nearly as strong as I appear. I am very good at putting on a poker face when it comes to emotions. When I talk about how we lost her I hope that it will continue to raise awareness and put her story on the hearts of everyone. Hopefully they will pass on that information and tell every mother they know to place their babies on their “Backs to Sleep”. Telling her story does require strength but I feel that Jordan’s angel gives me the courage to talk about it and tell her story.

I titled this blog post “I count my blessings”. I have so many things in my life to be thankful for and at times it seems easier to dwell on the losses. I have also included a link to a song that has recently spoken to me and has really touched my heart.

– I am thankful for a God that is with me every day…
– for my family
– for the short 9 weeks that we were blessed with Baby Jordan in our lives
– for my smart and funny son who is 4. He wears our M.B.J. SIDS bracelet on his ankle in memory of his sister.
– for the beautiful baby girl we named Hope because she fills me with that every day
– for the ability to have a job that on some days allows me to rock my little Hope to sleep and lay her down for a nap.
– for a mother who taught me how to love and how to be a mom. The same mom who is also in Heaven holding my baby girl.
– for a church and a pastor who provides great wisdom and a place to worship. We have a great church family at Community of Faith
– for KSBJ, our local Christian Radio station that somehow knows the right song to play to lift my spirits.

I could be up all night listing every tiny thing that God has given me to touch my life.

We are praying that our 501 (C) 3 application currently in the hands of the IRS gets passed quickly and we are able to use that to work towards continuing to raise awareness of SIDS and safe sleeping practices.

Posted by Jaime Connell at 9:38 PM  

My new normal

24 Feb

My new normal is taking it one day at a time. It is amazing to me how much people talk about kids. I find myself doing the same thing. The posts that I make in Facebook are often photos or comments about my kids. I receive an email every week on how my kids are developing and what milestone the may be achieving this week. They are the center of my world.

The hard part for me is when I mention one child, there is always that question that I still have trouble answering. “How many kids do you have” Hmmm….well I think to myself and try to find the right answer, the one that they want to hear. I have given birth to 3 beautiful children. But if I say “3” then the question that always follows is “how old are they”. Well that is another tough one. Chase is 4 and a great little boy. Hope is 7 months old today and Jordan would be 20 months old but we lost her to SIDS when she was just 9 weeks old. And then the mood immediately changes and the person who asked feels bad for asking. I hate to make people feel bad for asking, but I do not want to tell a lie either. I love my baby girl every day and miss her dearly.

I wonder how many people are out there in the world trying to get pregnant and are having trouble. I am sure that they are bombarded with questions about why they don’t have kids yet. When in fact that is the one most important thing in this world that they want and it is hard to say “I can’t have kids” .

Hug your kids if you have them, hug and pray for someone who does not and please make sure to remind new mothers to place their babies on their backs to sleep.


His Plans

24 Jan

“For I know the plans I have for you,’declares the LORD,’plans to prosper you and not to harm you,plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all of your heart.” Jeremiah 29:11-13

Rough Day

23 Jan

“When life seems empty and there’s no place to go, when your heart is troubled and your spirits are low the burden that seems too heavy to bear God lifts away on the wings of prayer”

I read this in a book today and it made me feel better. It has been over a year since I lost my baby girl and I still think about her every day. As we are about to celebrate Hope’s 6 month birthday on Monday I am reminded that each day is precious. And that everyday that I have with my family is a blessing from above.

2009 was a year of great highs, and deep lows, but yet life goes on. Baby Jordan is with me always and I know that I have a little angel on my shoulder. God doesn’t give us what we can not handle and surprisingly the sun comes up each morning and goes down again each night. The world still turns, no matter what is happening in our lives. I wish I could have stopped time for just one more day, one hour, or even one second to be able to hold her warm hand and tell her that mommy loves her!

Kiss your loved ones today, time goes by so fast.

The MBJ Foundation will be her legacy. It is Baby Jordan’s way of helping others from Heaven. Because I know that is where she is at.
Posted by Jaime Connell at 4:35 PM January 22, 2010

Happy New Year

31 Dec

As the new year comes quickly upon us, I found this article that I wanted to share. SIDS effects 2,500 babies a year. Let’s all try to reduce this number to zero. There are researchers out there working to find the cause so that other families do not have to go through the same tragedy that we did.

As the holidays come and go there are so many things that I am thankful for. I have a wonderful family, caring friends and a great church family at Community of Faith. I miss my baby girl every day. But I know that she is in good hands in Heaven. God has shown me that life can go on and that we can find JOY in the little things each day.

Happy New Year from MBJ Foundation. We are looking for a blessed 2011 and are working to continue to build the MBJ Foundation for SIDS to help make a difference in the lives of families.

Holiday Hangover- ABC News Article

Christmas 2010

29 Dec

Christmas is a time of celebration. The birth of our savior so long ago. I wonder if Mary put Baby Jesus to sleep on his back. What an amazing tale of a mother’s love. I lean on Jesus for strength and security in times of trouble and joy.

I can’t help but think about our little Jordan and wonder what she would be doing. How much she would have grown and what she would be like? We have created the MBJ foundation to help give Jordan a voice to be able to help save other babies. Randy and I are looking forward to 2011 being a year that will see the MBJ Foundation for SIDS growing and making an even bigger impact in the community.

I will be posting articles about SIDS along with preventive tips throughout the year on this blog site. Getting the word out and spreading information to as many people as possible is an important part of the MBJ Foundation for SIDS.

Back to Sleep Campaign article

It’s Already Been a Year….

21 Aug

I can look back and remember everything that happened a year ago today. The phone call, where I was at in the car, even what I was wearing. And I clearly remember praying for God to save my little girl. But He didn’t. Why? I still ask that question on a daily basis. It makes me think of the Garth Brook’s song “Unanswered Prayers”. How does He decide which ones He wants to answer?

I still find myself asking were there signs that I missed? Did she do anything different that day that I should have caught as a mom. My head says that there wasn’t, but my heart aches to wonder what I missed.

After going through such a tragedy and thinking about it every day, I just look up to the sky and tell my little girl hi. We will never know why God decided that he needed an angel that day, I feel blessed that we had her for 9 short weeks, too short of a time. I think about what milestone she would be hitting by now. I can imagine her hobbling around and trying to walk. Would she be saying ‘momma” yet?

My son Chase picked up his cell phone the other day and said “I am going to call baby Jordan” he asked “can you talk baby Jordan?” ” no ok, bye bye” and he hung up. I wonder how much he remembers, we were not even talking about her that day. My heart just sank and I tried to keep it together for him.

The circle of life just amazes me. As I type this I have a month old baby girl sleeping on my chest. What did I do to deserve the gift of giving birth to a little girl and the chance to be a mom again. God is Great! I look at her each day and just think that God must have big plans for her. If Jordan were still with us, we would not have had another baby. And this little precious life is here with us. She has so much of her sister in her.

Thanks for all of the prayers and kind thoughts. We need it.

Father’s Day in the Connell House

21 Jun

I feel that every event that occurs from here until eternity I will always find myself saying, “if only Baby Jordan were here”. I am sure that Father’s day was tougher on my husband than he let on. Everything is in a different perspective when you loose a child to SIDS. Last father’s day was our first weekend home with Jordan, and this was our first without her. Time goes by so fast.

We had good day,went to church and heard a great message for all parents about how to raise your kids. Let them be themselves, just as God has created them to be. They are not little versions of us. Then it was off to watch the Astros loose again. It was Chase’s first baseball game and we were with good friends of ours, so the dads had a great day.

As we get ready for the new baby to arrive, I am washing and getting the room ready for her arrival. The outfits that we have photos of Jordan in, I put away for safe keeping. I want this baby to be different and have her own things. I tried to find an outfit for her coming home photo at the hospital that was not pink. That was a difficult task to accomplish. With clothes clean and the bed ready, we have less than a month until delivery.
Chase asks everyday, “Is baby Hope coming out today”, when I tell him no he gets upset. Three year olds do not have a very good concept of time. Everything is either yesterday or tomorrow. Nothing in the future or past.

I am in the process of searching for childcare for baby Hope after her arrival. I want to find someone who will love her as much as our former babysitter did. But I also want someone who has knowledge about SIDS and what the ways to prevent it are. How many infants have they cared for and will they be a good fit for our family. I am finding it very tough task these days. But I think we are close.

Signing off to cook dinner for the family, thanks to all who read this. It is a good release to get things out of my head. We are working on an official website for Jordan’s foundation and will post updated blog posts to that when we get it complete. It will be a great source of links on SIDS and resources that parents can come to. Definitely a work in progress, but a step in the right direction towards finding a cure.

Happy Birthday Baby Jordan

16 Jun

Today we should be celebrating our little girl’s first birthday. but we went to the cemetery instead. This is the first of many milestones that we have to face as the years pass.

I miss her, but we just have to keep our eyes to Heaven and find comfort that she is up there. No matter how much we miss her and how hard days like today are, I do have comfort in knowing that she is in the arms of God. It is the selfish human side that wants her here with me. I want to hold her and I wonder what she would look like. How many teeth would she have, would she start looking like me yet? I still find myself having moments and asking “why did he take her?” What I would give to have her back? But I am reminded everyday that we are not in control.

The Connell family is a mix of highs and lows. I have dear friends who are praying for us and that helps. I had lunch with a good friend to help keep my mind off of things. I shopped at Toys R Us and bought a few toys for my son. At least someone had to get a gift today. Randy and I went out to the cemetery this afternoon. What a peaceful place. They do a great job keeping it up, so many flowers around. We think that the parent’s of the little boy who is buried next to Jordan put a pinwheel by her tombstone. What thoughtful people. I guess there is a silent bond between parents who lost their kids at such an early age. SIDS is a terrible life steeling problem and we are doing what we can to help find the cause so that they can diagnose it early and avoid any more babies from missing their first birthday.

At times I feel guilty for being excited about a new baby. Just an honest thought, but we prayed and put it in God’s hands. And we feel so fortunate to be expecting a new baby at the end of July. Life gives us so many ups and downs. We are a blessed family. I will never know why she was with us for just a short time. And why we are now the lucky ones to be having another baby. She will never replace our baby Jordan, but she will help complete our family.
Happy Birthday Baby Jordan, mommy will always miss you.
“Those we have held in our arms for a little while, we hold in our hearts forever”

Her Journey’s Just Begun

12 May

A dear friend of mine at work gave me this card after we lost Jordan and I keep it on my desk as a constant reminder. I am sitting here thinking about what Jordan would be doing right now and I felt compelled to share it on the blog.

Don’t think of her as gone away-
her journey’s just begun,
life holds so many facets-
this earth is only one.

Just think of her as resting
from the sorrows and the tears
in a place of warmth and comfort
where there are no days and years.

Think how she must be wishing
that we could know today
how nothing but our sadness
can really pass away.

And think of her as living
in the hearts of those she touched…
for nothing loved is ever lost-
and she was loved so much.

Just missing my little girl today and every time I read this I get a little bit of strength. I still have days that I do not want to be the strong one. I want her back and I ask God why did you take her. These short verses tells me that she is at home now, in the arms of my mom and she knows that she was loved so very much.