Last week I met up with a lady in the parking lot of a bank. She opened the trunk of her SUV to reveal baskets of beautiful tiny silk and satin treasures — baby outfits. Whoah, they were GORGEOUS , with lace and pearls, and elaborate embellishments, even tiny bow-ties . . . and the BONNETS! Oh Swoon!
I hope and pray that nobody reading this post EVER becomes the recipient of one of these gowns, because they were sewn for babies who don’t get to go home with their families and grow up. But if you should ever go through an infant loss, and see one of these gowns or use the services of a Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep photographer, please know that your baby will be wrapped in LOVE!
You see, these aren’t just beautiful baby dresses. They have been lovingly crafted from wedding dresses by a newly-formed group of volunteers in the Katy area, Angel Gowns by Diane . Their concept is to use memento from a happy and joyful day to help ease the sting of sadness and grief when a baby dies. This specific supply of gowns in preemie to newborn sizes is going to the local professional photographers who serve with Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep, a worldwide nonprofit organization that provides bereavement photography at no charge to families The Angel Gowns group also contributes their gowns directly to hospitals in the area.
Want to get involved? Want to help?
First — NILMDTS is in DESPERATE need of more qualified professional photographers, both in the Houston area and throughout the United States. In Houston we ask our photographers to be on call and available to go to the Texas Medical Center just one day a month, and to help with suburban cases near their homes or studios on an as-needed basis. If you know a photographer or if you are one, I (or one of the other two local NILMDTS Area Coordinators) will help get you through the application process. You will receive training, and one of us will actually accompany you on your first shoot and walk you through the process so that it’s not as intimidating the next time around.
It’s just SO STINKIN’ SAD when a hospital calls us, and we do not have a photographer available to create beautiful images for the grieving family. There are SO MANY TALENTED photographers in this city, and I believe that just about anyone who wants to can find a way to schedule one non-appointment day a month to be available provide this gift of healing. Please check out the NILMDTS Web Site to learn more about our organization.
If you’re not a photographer,
you CAN still talk to photographers you know and encourage them to get involved.
Also, I know that NILMDTS operates on a shoestring. Tax Deductible financial contributions will help keep the organization’s website and resources up to date and to provide training and support for volunteers.
And if you’d like to to get involved with Angel Gowns by Diane. They need
- wedding dress donations
- people to dismantle the dresses, cut patterns and/or sew the gowns
- people to help coordinate with area NICU’s and with NILMDTS.
- People to pick up and deliver donated dresses
Just check out their facebook page (I understand that a full website is in the works) for more details.