Grieving Mom Donates Over 2,000 Ounces of Breastmilk in Inspiring Act of Selflessness

wendy cruz-chanLosing a child to stillbirth is one of the most heartbreaking experiences anyone can face, but one woman found a way to turn her personal tragedy into a positive thing for other moms and babies -- and we couldn't be more inspired. Three days after the birth of her stillborn son Killian, Wendy Cruz-Chan started pumping her breastmilk for babies in need, with a goal of donating 2,000 ounces. Not only has she exceeded her goal since then, but her milk has helped to nourish six babies ... and the process of pumping has helped her to heal.


Cruz-Chan, who is a doula, developed a rare uterus infection when she was 19 weeks pregnant that caused Killian to be stillborn. 

"All I have of him are his ashes in his urn," Cruz-Chan told

"I can't dress him, I can't play with him, I can't watch him grow. As a mother, it breaks me. It hurts me deeply."

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So devastating. It would have been completely understandable for Cruz-Chan to curl up in a ball and hide away in bed for the next several months after what happened to her. Instead, as Cruz-Chan left the hospital, her breasts engorged, she thought of a way do something proactive with her pain: Cruz-Chan decided to pump and donate her breastmilk to babies in need, using her contacts as a doula and social media to find moms looking for supplementation.

"Even though I cannot personally breastfeed my own son, I wanted to do something in his name," she said. "That's all I can do for him."

"I wanted to turn something tragic into something good."

And indeed she did: All 2,038 ounces of the milk she's donated are helping babies to thrive, particularly one child diagnosed with Epidermolysis bullosa, a rare disease which causes blisters on the skin. And as Cruz-Chan wrote in a recent Facebook post, pumping and donating her milk has played a huge part in helping her to thrive, too:

"Pumping every 3-4 hours a day including nights was very tiring. But it was so worth it. Seeing those babies thriving from my milk, really helped me through my healing process. I know I'm going to miss lactating. I wanted to show that even after a tragic stillbirth, you can turn that into something positive and inspire those around you. Through my grief I evolved and learned to pull myself out of the darkness."

And just look at the gorgeous babies she's given such a healthy start in life!


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What an amazingly strong person! Not only did Cruz-Chan do something truly wonderful for these babies, she did something equally valuable for women everywhere who've been through similar experiences by speaking out about this very common (but still terribly traumatic) occurence. As she wrote, "Let's break the silence of stillbirths!" Nothing can take away the pain of infant loss, but women need to know that they're not alone, and that healing is possible. Bravo to Cruz-Chan for giving them hope!


Image via Wendy Cruz-Chan/Facebook 

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