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Herpes Can Kill

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I had this light-hearted post all ready to go today. Then we had Isaiah Jeffrey's 6th birthday "celebration." Every July 19th our family comes together for dinner and to release balloons with messages into the heavens for the angels to carry to our baby.

Isaiah was taken from us when he was exactly 12 weeks old. The birth "father" failed to disclose he had the herpes virus. My daughter was infected and had no symptoms. Isaiah was infected. We found out when he was about 10 days old. A few days later we were told that he wouldn't be with us long. From the day he was born the child was never put down. He was held every second of every day. We had a lifetime of love to give him and a very short time to do so. He died here at my home during dinner on October 11, 2004. When he left a part of all of us left as well.

My daughter's guilt is overwhelming, as is mine. It doesn't matter that there was nothing we could do, it's crushing. Many people ask us how we can live through the situations that our family faces. It's easy really. Once you've lost your child and grandchild nothing seems as dire. You look at things with a new perspective. Yes, at times our struggles seem to be more than we can handle, especially now. But we remember tiny Isaiah and losing him and we know that if we can survive that, we can survive anything.

I know that many of you have differing beliefs than my family and I do. I respect yours and I ask that no matter your belief, you would be willing to watch and listen to the video and the words spoken. Please, for Isaiah.

I'm going to ask something that I never ask. Please re-post this, re-tweet this, share it. We had no idea that my daughter was infected and we had no idea that herpes can be devastating for babies. It can kill them.  Help us get the word out. Be informed, be tested, be cautious. There are innocent lives at stake.

Sorry that the video quality isn't great. I didn't save it correctly.



Unknown July 20, 2010 at 4:23 AM  

I'm so sorry. I can't even imagine the loss you and your daughter must feel. It was a beautiful memorial ceremony. I had no idea that the herpes virus was fatal to babies. Thank you for sharing a painful memory in order to honor your grandson and to bring awareness.

Unknown July 20, 2010 at 5:13 AM  

Oh my goodness, this is heartbreaking. I am so sorry you had to go through this. I think what you are doing to spread awareness is wonderful and I will do my part in helping out.

Nicole July 20, 2010 at 5:23 AM  

Thank you for sharing this. I also discovered that herpes can cause a very deadly form of meningitus in adults. Scary stuff.

Gucci Mama July 20, 2010 at 6:08 AM  

I don't have any words that come close to being good enough. I wish I did. So, so heartbreaking.

I will share.

Ms. Understood July 20, 2010 at 6:20 AM  

Oh my gosh, This is just so beautiful. My gosh, your husband's prayer touched me so deeply. I can't remember exactly the line, but along the lines of not knowing why things happen the way they do, but God knows best. This is such a touching memorial. The picture collage was beautiful, especially the last picture.

Of topic, is that your son who was in the accident on the crutches?

Babes Mami July 20, 2010 at 6:28 AM  

Thanks for the tears in the morning! :[ So sad, I had no idea herpes could kill!

The Invisible Seductress July 20, 2010 at 7:22 AM  

I am crying and smiling with you while I watch. What a wonderful family you have!!


Hugs to all!!

Jessica Warrick July 20, 2010 at 7:31 AM  

This is so sad. Your right not many people know this about herpes. Including myself. This is one thing the DR. should tell you when your pregnant or thinking of getting pregnant cause i bet there are lots of women out there that dont know this. So sorry for your families tragedy im glad your all handling it well.

Furry Bottoms July 20, 2010 at 7:54 AM  

Oh Diva, that does tug at the heartstrings!! I am sending you lots of supportive love and hugs.

Nolie July 20, 2010 at 8:54 AM  

I am so sorry that your family has gone through this loss. There is so much unknown and there is no education on herpes unless you look for it and even then the information is not always the same.

Christy July 20, 2010 at 9:54 AM  

Knowledge is power. Only by spreading the word will this ever be known. I am so sorry for your loss. It is extremely difficult to lose a child but to lose one because of the inexcusable actions of one person. I just saw a program about herpes being passed on to another child who was lost. Had she known, there would have been no loss. Maybe one day people will realize that children do not have to suffer the same fate and families will not have to lose another one.

Unknown July 20, 2010 at 10:16 AM  

So very sorry for your loss. Consider this re-posted, and re-tweeted.

Carrie July 20, 2010 at 11:01 AM  

I was fortunate to have a doc who wasn't afraid to talk about STD's to his patients. He made sure I was tested before any of my kids were born (each time, even tho they had the same dad) and there was no issue but he was very honest and warned that it was deadly to babies!

I will share your post tomorrow, thank you for your willingness to be open and honest about this tragic event in your life in order to help others out there!!!

Karyn July 20, 2010 at 11:12 AM  


I am thinking about all of you guys......Jeff made me cry- thanks for allowing us to celebrate Isaiah with you- love to all of you guys!

Snowbrush July 20, 2010 at 11:13 AM  

How sad. I am very sorry.

Jennifer Juniper July 20, 2010 at 11:27 AM  

The videos are beautiful (and its difficult to notice whether they were of good quality or not since I was crying).
I can't even imagine and there are no words. Thank you for sharing.

Rachel July 20, 2010 at 11:58 AM  

You are so right when you say not enough people know about this... its like a hidden danger... I am sorry your family have gone through this tragedy, I cried watching the video I cried reading your story. This is in fact a subject close to my heart from many reasons.... God Bless you all

Waning Woman July 20, 2010 at 12:58 PM  

This is a heartbreaking post and I have tears of anger because your precious grandchild's death could have been prevented. That is the worst part about all of this.

Let me get on my soapbox!!!!!!Women, even if you don't think that you have anything INSIST that you be given a blood test to rule out anything. Herpes can only be visually detected if there is an active outbreak, other wise you look fine. If you do test positive and you are pregnant you can be placed on an antiviral regimen than can GREATLY reduce the risk of vertical transmission. If there is an outbreak at the time of delivery, a c-section can be scheduled. There are ways to minimize the risks, but ONLY IF YOU KNOW.

Unknown July 20, 2010 at 1:13 PM  

Thank you for sharing this. It takes a strong family to come out of such a hard thing and show others to help them have to not experience it. God will bless you all.

Sey July 20, 2010 at 2:54 PM  

I wasn't able to view the video for some reason it doesn't appear here, but I will share this post on twitter.

I am so sorry about what had happened to your baby! But I know it made the family bond grow stronger.

Anonymous,  July 20, 2010 at 4:42 PM  

damn girl that sucks. I had no idea.

Erin July 20, 2010 at 5:30 PM  

I didn't know...thank you. Your grandson was absolutely precious...

Classic NYer July 20, 2010 at 6:32 PM  

This makes a strong case for being careful... I wonder if more people knew that herpes could kill if they would take more care in disclosing what they have and don't have... Thanks for sharing this very necessary information.

W.C.Camp July 20, 2010 at 6:33 PM  

Of course it is sad but I will have to say, I cannot think of a better way to remember anyone. So in that sense, your family offers a perfect gift yearly that will forever be more valuable than gold! Stay strong. W.C.C.

Holly July 20, 2010 at 8:27 PM  

So sorry for your and your daughter's pain... Beautiful memorial! ((HUGS))

Another thing that is important to note along with this is that cold sores are a form of the herpes virus. I frequently get cold sores and it was stressed to me to wear a mask, don't touch it, and wash my hands frequently when my babies were small because it can be deadly to them (Yes, even from a cold sore!)My 6 yr old had to wear a mask when my 3rd was born due to his cold sore. Inconvenient? Yes. Worth it? ABSOLUTELY!

Karen Mortensen July 20, 2010 at 9:16 PM  

That was very beautiful. What a sweet little boy he was. I think it is really great that you do this every year.

JoJo July 20, 2010 at 10:18 PM  

This is beautiful. I've told you before, but you have such an inspiring family.

I'm so glad you posted about this and are getting the word out.

During my rotation in the nicu last year, I had a preterm baby with with herpes who didn't make it. The mother had no idea she was infected because she was asymptomatic.

The whole thing was so devastating.

I'm so glad you're increasing awareness in such a touching and meaningful way.

Michelle Pixie July 21, 2010 at 8:06 AM  

My heart aches for you all.

You have such an amazing family and I know Isaiah can feel all that love now and always.


Anonymous,  July 21, 2010 at 8:25 AM  

I found out I have Herpes shortly after I found out I was pregnant this time. We know that the type is HSV1 but that doesn't mean my mouth is where the sores will show up. I was started on antivirals immediately and we still don't know WHERE the virus entered my body so I will stay on the regimine until after the birth. We are just praying everything will be fine and nothing bad will happen.

I am so deeply sorry for your loss. I really hope people see this and realise the dangers.

Anonymous,  July 21, 2010 at 4:38 PM  

I am so sorry....

Holly September 29, 2010 at 12:59 AM  

This would be a great one to link up for awareness sometime, too... Gee, you could just link up weekly with causes you've already posted about! ;p (((HUGS)))

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