It’s not until a tragedy strikes you personally that you begin to understand the fragility of life.

I found out that I was pregnant in November of 2019. At that time I wasn’t sure how to take that news. Shocked, happy, at a loss for words, excited, wondering if I was ready to do this again (18 years later) etc. Then I found out that I was having a daughter!!! The joy and excitement that was inside of me! Zoey (meaning LIFE) Madison (meaning Gift of God) Downs would be her name. Zoe, or Maddie for short. I knew that prayer worked. I knew that I would have a little me and looked forward to us having tea parties and spa days. The anticipation, knowing, and having the mindset that I would welcome a healthy baby girl within the next 9 months was so surreal. Or, maybe it wasn’t…

Fast-forward 4 months later, February 20, 2020, at 10:15 pm, my life began a different book. Zoey Madison made her grand entrance, but it was quiet and peaceful. The cries that you would hope to hear were replaced with silence. The joy and excitement you would hope to see from your doctors and nurses were replaced with condolences.

The room was silent, but Zoey was beautiful. The initial shock hadn’t set it yet, but Zoey had 10 toes and 10 fingers. There was so much going on around me, but my focus was on her. So tiny, so fragile, but so full of love. She was a little princess! A spitting image of her mother! She was everything that I had hoped for. But our 5-month bond had come to an end. My Zoey had gained her wings, and a new set of feelings, emotions, changes, mood swings that I had never experienced, were about to become a new life ritual.

As if losing my daughter wasn’t upsetting enough, now I would have to deal with these new emotions and her loss during a pandemic. Believe me when I say that God does not give us anything that we can’t handle. Losing Zoey at the beginning of a pandemic and then having to grieve in isolation was very challenging. The emotions are still a whirlwind. I’m very thankful that NILMDTS was able to capture moments that I never would have thought about. For those of you going through a difficult season during this pandemic with the loss of a child, know that you are not alone. Know that there are people for you to talk to, vent to, and express your feelings to. Know that you will forever have an angel watching over you! Our angels may not be here physically, but they will always be here spiritually!

“He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless.”

– Isaiah 40:29

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2021-07-19T16:42:41+00:00July 8th, 2021|Families, NILMDTS News, Parents|2 Comments


  1. Carol Reding July 8, 2021 at 8:14 pm

    I’m so sorry. She is beautiful! I too longed for a daughter. After having four miscarriages (the last two were twins lost a couple months apart) I did get my daughter through adoption from Korea over 24 years ago. There will always be a place in your heart for your little princess Zoey. NILMDTS helped my 3 month old great nephew’s (who was born on National SIDS Awareness Day, October 15th) parents with purchasing a headstone. I am glad they helped you with having photos of her to cherish. They are priceless.

  2. Phyllis R Nelson July 9, 2021 at 12:26 am

    Thank you for sharing yours and Zoeys’ story. My heart hurts for you with the loss of your little girl, but also because you had to suffer through the initial months of your loss, in isolation. I’m praying that God would continue to bless you with comfort, with courage to go on and for wisdom to continue sharing your story. You are precious in His sight.

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