Resources to Help with the Sudden, Unexplained Death of a Toddler
I'm looking for the best CD's for some friends who have experienced the loss of a child, Magnolia. She was 22 months old when they found her dead in her crib one morning for no apparent reason - SUCD (Sudden Unexplained Childhood Death).
This happened a year ago in January 2013. (I'm not sure why I didn't think of something from Health Journeys sooner. I too lost a child 27 years ago before I knew of Health Journeys)
They have struggled and do struggle mightily. They are expecting a baby again in late spring and also have another daughter, who is 7.
I would like suggestions for both the couple and the daughter. They have processed very openly and publicly with a blog, a book donation drive for children through the New York Public Library ($40,000 so far), and services in the Bronx and Denver, CO area, both when Magnolia died and at the one-year anniversary of her loss.
The pain is still quite raw as they deal with how wrong it is that Magnolia is not with them or in this world, and even that any healing means they are more separated from her.
Additionally, we are good friends with Magnolia's grandmother and would love suggestions for her.
It sounds like your friends are doing amazingly well, in spite of the terrible trauma and loss they've experienced. To have gotten through this very rough, first year of anguish (and the anniversary of Magnolia's death) while still managing to do charitable fundraising for similarly affected families, is awesome.
I guess for the parents, I'd first recommend our Ease Grief imagery and then, if that seems to help, and they're up for more imagery at a deeper level, I'd move to alternating that Grief imagery with Healing Trauma and when they're up for more variety, I'd then suggest Heartbreak, Abandonment & Betrayal. Additionally, If they have trouble sleeping, I'd add Healthful Sleep to whatever else they're listening to. But I wouldn't throw all these titles at them at once - it could be overwhelming to do that. I'd start small and see how they respond. Others you might consider for later on would be Anger & Forgiveness and Emmett Miller's Accepting Change and Moving On. These would be the same titles I'd recommend for the grandparents, by the way.
As for Magnolia's 7-year-old sister, I'd suggest I Am the Sky! as well as Magic Island, and perhaps The Sleep Fairy if she is having trouble with sleep. And a Little Heartbeat Pillow with soothing aromatherapy herbs, might be just the ticket, microwavably warm to hold against her heart for comfort when going to bed or just for general comfort.
I hope these suggestions are a help. As you know, it's a terrible thing your friends have been through, and although nothing will ever be the same for them, they can get beyond this level of pain and preoccupation and move on to a level of joy and engagement with life that may feel impossible to them right now. They need to be patient with themselves and let things follow their course. They will find plenty of space in their broken hearts for this new baby (after all, a broken heart is a heart that's wide open), while always holding a special room in there (perhaps a whole wing!) for their beloved Magnolia. They can grieve and love at the same time. We all do it.
All best wishes,