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Baby Hope

September 12, 2009

A week ago, someone in my community did something so horrendous, so beyond comprehension, that I struggle to catch my breath.

A newborn baby was carried along the banks of the river.  By a man?  A woman?  Someone with a vested interest in the chestnut-haired newborn child now known as Baby Hope.  She weighed 7 pounds, even, and she still had her umbilical cord and placenta attached when they placed her in the river and let her go.

They just let her go.

She stayed in the river for a week, the coroner said.  A week in the icy water, being tossed to and fro by the current.  The water levels fell, and someone walking along the river bank near Sac.ramento discovered her poor little body.  

That little baby girl, who never had a chance at life.  Never had a chance to smile.  Never had a chance to grow.

I think of how tenderly I held my baby girls when they were born.  And my heart aches for little Baby Hope, for never having known that kind of love. 

For how could they have loved her, if they put her in the river?

Tonight, my community will hold a candlelight vigil in Baby Hope’s honor.  It’s being hosted by a group comprised of parents who have lost their children.  Their hearts are already heavily burdened with the loss of their own babies, and now they carry the loss of Baby Hope, as well.  They mourn for what could have been.

I think about that, and my sadness turns to anger.  In this country, we have fought tooth and nail to make sure people have choices.  Birth control, the morning after pill, abor.tion, adoption, places to surrender babies with no questions asked.

And yet, Baby Hope was found on the river bank.  Alone.  Abandoned.

I wonder if the person who placed here there watched her float away.  Did they turn their back on her, without a second thought?  Or did they do it out of desperation, thinking there was no other way out of a terrible situation?

I hope someday we’ll know.  Because Baby Hope deserves an answer.

*Anyone interested in contributing to Baby Hope’s burial fund can email me at Jerdre53 (at) aol (dot) com. *

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10 comments

  1. I read this in the car this afternoon, but couldn’t comment until now. I was hoping that waiting to comment would give me time to come up with words, but I have none. My heart is sad.


  2. Heartbreaking. I saw your tweets and had no words.


  3. Stories like this absolutely BREAK.MY.HEART!


  4. That poor baby didn’t deserve that, why not take to a hospital and leave there. Why choose that as an answer,not when there are so many choices. I always think of the women that can’t have child that would kill for a chance at giving a child a life and some sick person toss one away like nothing. So sad …breaks your heart.


  5. Frustrating beyond belief, in addition to tragically sad. I often wonder if the people who need to know really know about the ability to surrender a baby in a safe place without risk. Because this should never happen.


  6. There’s no excuse for this in these times. THere are too many other options for unwanted/unexpected babies. Sick. Sad. Shameful.


  7. my sweet… i’m so sorry for your hurt. it’s inexplicable. but i can’t help but look at her name and then look at your post, your new blog… HOPE. and that makes me smile because you are here with your voice, while baby hope will not be able to share her’s, you can and you are. i’m proud of you.


  8. That is just heartless. Someone who does something like this is just plain heartless. There are tons of places someone could leave a baby, safely with no repercussions for their inability to keep her.

    It’s just so sad. I just don’t understand.

    Hey, so how are you doing this week? Been wondering about you and how it’s going with no meds. Hope you are doing okay. hugs.


  9. I hear things like this and it breaks my heart. But her little life didn’t go unnoticed because people like you are there to love and remember her.


  10. Tragic.



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