This story of a woman who lost her baby will break your heart—but it has an incredibly uplifting ending.
Wendy Cruz-Chan was 19 weeks pregnant when a rare infection called Chorioamnionitis caused her baby to be stillborn. Cruz-Chan commemorated her son by keeping his ashes in an urn, but that wasn't enough: She wanted something positive to come from her story. "I wanted to turn something tragic into something good," Cruz-Chan told Inside Edition.
Cruz-Chan's breasts were engorged and her milk ducts were forming—and when she realized this, she made a decision: She would pump and donate her milk so that other infants could benefit. Cruz-Chan is a doula herself, and she reached out to women via social media to offer up her milk to infants who needed it.
"Even though I cannot personally breastfeed my own son, I wanted to do something in his name. That's all I can do for him," she said, according to Inside Edition. "Through donating, it gave me a purpose. It helped me not be in such a deep depression."
Cruz-Chan shared a bit about her experience on Facebook as well. "Some people see me pump, they ask me, "How old is you baby?" When I tell them that my baby had passed away when he was born. They're faces turn into shocked and pityness," she wrote. "Sometimes it doesn't get easier, other times I just ignore it. But I try to move forward and prepare myself for people's questions."
She's donated over 2,000 ounces of breast milk to date.
Cruz-Chan has chosen to wean and prepare herself for her next pregnancy—but she'll still do her part to bring positive change: She's working on a project that will bring awareness to the issues of stillbirth and miscarriage.
"Pumping every 3-4 hours a day including nights was very tiring. But it was so worth it," she wrote on her Facebook page. "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."