Tuesday, January 3, 2012

I am Her... She is Me...
I gave ME................For Her
And her name is Violet Jeanine
I am simply Mom

This is the story of baby Violet. A pin-dot of cells, nestled into her mothers womb. Growing, multiplying, cells forming 10 fingers and 10 toes, a heart beating. Forming safely, protected by her loving mother. A mother who has also found out she has terminal liver cancer. She makes the ultimate life-giving decision for her new baby. Renee decides against chemotherapy so that this growing bundle of cells with a beating heart will one day breath air.

Renee continues to grow Violet in her womb. Feeling her daughterʼs first flutter, the kicks, the rolls, and hiccups. Renee carried her daughter for 32 weeks gestation. The liver cancer had become too aggressive. It was time for Violet to be born. Renee delivered Violet peacefully with only one push. Her daughtersʼ heart beating on her own, her daughtersʼ lungs took their first breath. Her daughtersʼ cord is clamped........Violet is on her own, but not alone.

Violet is 4.6lbs at birth. She is healthy and strong.
Her mother, a cancer patient, provided kangaroo care for Violet. She was nurtured skin-to-skin. She was worn by her Uncle. She was never left alone. She was surrounded by love. And she felt the determination of her dying mother; a mother who never once asked “why?”. A dying mother who never complained. A mother who accepted her lifeʼs path.

Violet was born November 17th, she was released from the NICU on December 1st. And her mother, Renee, passed away December 15th. Her dying wish is that her daughter be raised on breastmilk.

This is what was on her celebration of life party:

This Body is Not Me

This body is not me.
I am not limited by this body.
I am life without boundaries.
I have never been born,
and I have never died.
Look at the ocean and the sky filled
with stars, manifestations from my
wondrous true mind.
Since before time, I have been free.
Birth and death are only doors
through which we pass, sacred
thresholds on our journey.
Birth and death are a game of hide-
and seek.
So laugh with me,
hold my hand,
let us say goodbye,
say good-bye, to meet again soon.
We meet today.
We will meet again tomorrow.
We will meet at the source every
We will meet each other in all forms of
By Thich Nhat Hanh, chanting and Recitations from Plum Village

Renee's dying wish was that her daughter could be raised on human milk.  Her family is dedicated to making this wish come true.  If you have any milk that you are able to donate, please contact us at milkforbabyviolet@gmail.comor contact your local drop center!

Violet is located in Dutchess County in New York.  We are able to travel a bit to pick up, and we currently have drop-centers set up around the area.  Please check our Drop Off Locations page (link on top menu) to get in contact with a drop center near you.  We will be adding more over the next few days to cover a larger area.

We are requesting either copies of pregnancy labs, or a note from your doctor certifying that you are healthy to donate milk.  We strongly doubt that anyone who is so generously giving of themselves would do so knowing that their milk could be harmful to Violet, but it is a necessary precaution.

Copies of labwork sometimes has personal information that you may not wish to give out - addresses, social security numbers, etc.  Please feel free to black out any of that sensitive information with a marker.  We don't want this to make you uncomfortable in any way.

If you have any questions, please feel free to send me a message.


  1. I am willing to help with pick-up and delivery of any milk donations for Violet. My number is 518-470-4871 and i am in East CHATHAM. I will repost also....anything i can do to help, just call.

  2. I am so happy to be able to donate milk to Little Miss. Violet. My 2 year old even knows that when I am feeding his sister and pumping that I am pumping for Violet. I am so glad to see her picture and her story it helps to keep me determined to pump as long as I can for her.

  3. Maybe you could contact local mid wives, and ask them for some help.Good luck, such a sweet but sad love story.What an amazing Mom!!!!

  4. I am willing to pick up or drop off. I live in East Nassau, and travel throughout Renseelaer County every day. (518_366-1884

  5. I have shared the story too. I am all dried up from my twins a couple years ago, but i do have some friends that are due this month and some that have recently had a baby. Thoughts and prayers for the family.

  6. I am a new mom and have about 30 oz of breast milk frozen in bags from the end of October. I live in Manhattan and am clueless as to how to get these to you. I can also try to get you more of a fresh supply. Can anyone help me with the logistics? I would really love to help.

    My email is y [dot] yannini [at] hotmail [dot] com

  7. I live in mass.. I could maybe ship frozen in icepacks fedex overnight? Im nursing my daughter as well but i could manage at leave a few bottles

  8. If anyone is ever picking up donations in NYC, please contact me.

  9. My heart goes out to baby Violet and her family. I'm sharing this blog with my family and friends in the hope that it will help. I wish I could do more. But our prayers are with you all!

  10. I saw this e-mailed and immediately started taking my fenugreek to increase my supply for this little girl. I live in Litchfield CT. I could drop off in NY somewhere if I'm passing through or I could meet someone near the CT/NY border to drop off. e-mail contact at heatherveronesi@gmail.com

  11. I am still nursing my 2 yr old! I am pro home birth and breast milk all the way....I live in Brooklyn and am willing to donate ASAP!!!!!! 718-813-7074 Such a touching story, my heart is aching.. But there are good people that will make sure baby violet will get the best!!!

  12. I wish I was still pumping. I donated over 1100 ounces of breast milk to the Mothers Milk bank in North Carolina. I would just like to advise you to be careful who you get the milk from. There have been news coverage about people selling breast milk to people and they haven't gone through the necessary steps (blood tests, background checks, and signed forms from both pediatrician and ob/gyn) to donate or give it away. I would just be careful. And it is a great thing to give to a child. Also the best milk is the milk from a mom whose baby isn't quite one yet. So from birth to 12months is what the milk banks will take. It is the milk that has the most nutrients in it. Good luck and I hope everything goes well.

  13. For those of you in NYC who want to donate...I work in Inwood and live in Dutchess county and could transport the milk to one of the drop off sites in Dutchess with the milk that I am donating. Please email me to coordinate getting the milk to me:katferris@aol.com.

  14. I'll be pumping overtime to donate whatever I can while still breastfeeding my 5 month old...I'll get some fenugreek today! I work in NYC, downtown by City Hall but live in Westchester. I'd be willing to pick up and deliver for anyone that is interested. valg927@gmail.com

  15. Please check out Human Milk for Human Babies (HM4HB) and Eats on Feets on Facebook. I've gotten milk donated from 13 different generous mothers for our adopted daughter.

  16. My heart goes out to this beautiful baby , my children are older but I will post this story so that others can see. God Bless <3

  17. I live in Kingston ny but work in Sharon ct. I would be happy to help coordinate donations from the mass/ct, NE Dutchess and Ulster counties. Please email at bambeefin1990@gmail.com

  18. I emailed as well. I am pumping for my daughter now and have an over supply of ~20-30oz/day. I live in Dutchess county. Just waiting for someone to get back to me with details. If my milk is useful closer to home that would be great, otherwise I plan to donate to a milkbank.

  19. i really wish i lived close by to help....unfortunately i live far away.... my daughter is born on November 18th 2011 and i feel so blessed to be able to nurse her. Lots of love to the little angel Violet....

  20. Try contacting this milk bank: http://www.juliebouchet-horwitz.com/hudsonvalleymilkbank.html

    Julie is wonderful. Good luck and peace be with you.

  21. I posted your blog on facebook, and an Indian friend told me about the Human Milk Bank which his daughter-in-law donates to. Here's the link for North America: https://www.hmbana.org/

  22. I am still nursing my 22 month old with lots to spare. I would love to help, in Northern Westchester. I sent you an email!

  23. If anyone needs gelp in purchasing bags please contact me Tonya Potter 5183617248

  24. 1. Laleche has a website and contacts for Northern and Southern Duntchess County
    2. There is a website for the Human Milk Bank Association of North America. Per the HMBANA website, there are 11 established milk banks.
    3. I sent an email to Wake Med Hospital in NC. They have a milk bank and are licensed to disribute in NY. I sent a copy of Renee's blog to the Program Coordinator (Sue Evans). Her contact info. is on the website.
    4. There are 2 websites where women share their breast milk, but they are not monitored by HMBANA. Eatsonfeets.org has a FB page. Also, there is a site for Kellymom.com

    Above information send by A FDR grad , classmate of Renee, who is a Social Worker in California, Karen Dufee. Thank You Karen!!
    I hope this is helpful.
    God bless Violet and her family.
    Love, Sue Blakley Schmidt(high school friend of Renee's.)

  25. I live in Orange county, but would be willing to drive down to NYC to pick up. I have one friend in Brooklyn willing to donate. I would be happy to arrange a pick up for Staten Island, and Brooklyn, and as I would pass NJ going to to SI, I could stop at certain locations there as well

  26. an amazing sacrifice,,for a precious life. it's so nice to read all the support here.
    aprox. 40 years ago my mother made the same choice, to choose life,not her own but her unborn childs. she passed away just a year after my brother was born., leaving behind 8 children. it's quite a sacrifice., one i don't know if i could have made. i am thankful for these selfless souls. wishing the very best for Renee's family.

  27. @Amanda....I'm not sure where in Dutchess you are but Waddle n Swaddle in Poughkeepsie and Rhinebeck are drop off locations.

  28. All you wonderful ladies looking to donate just go onto modern milksharing on facebook and my good friend laura has posted how you can ship your milk if youre too far to do a drop off, youre all wonderful!!!!!

  29. I am pregnant and due in March. Once I'm lactating - I'll be sending some. I've shared before with an adopted baby and I'd be delighted to share with Violet. God bless Violet, her mom and family. I'm so sorry for your loss and so happy for your gain.

  30. I live in the Binghamton NY area. I currently do not have a freezer stash, and usually only pump one bottle ahead for my daughter, since I'm a pumping-slacker. This story has inspired me to pump more often, and I pledge to send milk to Baby Violet as soon as I have enough in my freezer for her.

  31. Human Milk 4 Human Babies - New York chapter is very busy with offers for milk (and requests, too!). I would go to their facebook page and post a request, I am sure you will find donors!

  32. My youngest weaned over 18 months ago, but I am happy to be a drop off point or pick up milk. I live in Beacon, NY. I can be reached at 418 4298.

  33. I wish I were still nursing so I could help. Violet and her family will be in my thoughts as well as all these lovely mamas helping out!!

  34. I have lots of frozen milk that needs a home! I will happily donate it if I can get it to you!! I am a midwife and eat impeccably, am very healthy and clean. You can contact me though my email. I would love to help!! thistleandlavender@yahoo.com


  35. I hope there is enough donations close by to give baby Violet all she needs... It is a sad day in the world when a Mother gives her life up for her child.

  36. What a great thing to do! However, for those of you who are using fenugreek (other than in cooking) in large doses, please be careful! There are some serious side effects, some being hypoglycemia, allergies, and interference with many medications, such as clotting medications....

  37. This is such a beautiful story. I wish I could help in some way but I do not have a small child and I live in California. I will simply send my well wishes and welcome to the world to baby Violet. Her mother has given her the gift of life and, through her dying wish, has given others the gift of an opportunity to give and to help her daughter. Simply beautiful. Violet's story moved me and has brightened my day. It is a life lesson to accept the fact that sometimes life comes from death and that, simply, the two coexist. Blessings to Violet and her family.

  38. 372 ounces are on their way for Baby Violet today. God blessed me with a great supply and now I'm so happy to be able to feed another baby too. Praying for Baby Violet and family and will continue to pump!

  39. I am in Chicago - how can I donate?