“Tell your story over and over.”

Jenna Merle 2When her twin babies were just two months old, Jenna Merle lived every new parent’s nightmare. One of her girls was taken too soon by Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS.

Jenna hopes to spread SIDS awareness to other parents by sharing her story with us.

Jenna, please tell us about your SIDS experience.

We had twin girls, Emma and Ellen, on September 20, 2013. On November 22, I woke up and went to check on them. I opened the door and Ellen was face down in her crib.

I grabbed her leg and she was cold. I could feel it through her sleeper. I moved her and her head turned. She was white.

I started screaming for my fiancé, ran to our bedroom and just screamed: Ellen! I collapsed on the floor. He went and tried CPR, but it was too late.

We called 911 and they were there in minutes. The paramedic came upstairs and told me it was too late. I lost it and just couldn’t move or stop screaming. We had lost our youngest twin daughter.

Ellen was beautiful and loved to cuddle. I miss her so much, it hurts so bad. I watch Emma growing up and I see all the things they should be doing together and they don’t get the chance. It’s not fair.

Jenna MerleWhat did you know about SIDS before you lost your child?

I knew that a child should be on their back, but our daughters had acid reflux so the tummy was the only relief they had when laying down. I knew pacifiers helped, and not to place bumpers in the crib.

What do you wish you had known sooner?

I don’t know.

What is your best piece of advice for other new or expecting parents?

Watch your children. Don’t sleep in bed with them. Too many people do and think it’s bonding. Give them a safe place to sleep.

Are there any SIDS support groups or resources you’d recommend to other parents who have lost a child?

I started the group Ellen and Emma’s Friends to help grieving parents of multiples.

Is there anything other parents can do to help spread awareness about SIDS?

Tell your story over and over. It may help save a child!

Has your family been affected by SIDS? We want to hear from you. You can reach us here.

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