Posts Tagged ‘NICU’

No child will say they want to take pictures of deceased babies when they grow up. Tammy Councilman, a native of Greensboro, NC is providing this service. She decided to do so after a simultaneous pregnancy with a friend whose baby did not live.

Because Tammy had not suffered an infant death herself, she searched the internet looking for baby loss support and found Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep. The non-profit offers professional portraiture for bereaved parents of babies born at 25 weeks gestation and greater, stillbirths, terminally ill babies on life support, Sudden Infant Death and can also be prearranged for Tammy or another volunteer to be present in the operating room if the baby’s diagnosis is not positive. Volunteers can come and take pictures during the first 24 hours or later, if the baby is preserved and conditions permit. This service is available even if the parents change their mind about having photographs taken. If this is the case and the funeral home allows, volunteers may photograph the memorial or funeral service at the parents request.

Tammy Councilman has been practicing professional photography for 14 years and volunteering for Now I Lay M Down to Sleep  fulfills a community need while honoring a friend’s deceased baby. Tammy was approved by the organization in September 2006 and had her first call from the hospital June 2007, with assistance. In this case, a baby was going to be taken off life support in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

“These are the only images you will have of your child and they will provide comfort by having something tangible. We say very little in the room and strive to take the best pictures of your babies in a sensitive manner,” comments Tammy.

A brochure is presented by the hospital to the parents regarding services from Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep. A signed consent form is needed for the photographer and they will be happy to read for you. A special outfit may be suggested, each family member may have photographs taken, you may change your baby, give them a bath, or just kiss them. If you have out-of-town family, you can ask the hospital to keep your baby until they arrive.  It may take up to 4 weeks to receive a CD of high resolution images and musical DVD slideshow from the session. 2-8×10 portraits will be provided immediately for the baby’s memorial service or funeral.

It is not uncommon for family and friends to make donations to Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep in the baby’s memory.

Tammy Councilman has 3 children ranging from 17 months to 13 years old, a supportive husband and 2 animals, one from an animal rescue. Her hobbies are photography, modern ballet and she is active with the Guilford Interfaith Hospitality Network at, St Paul The Apostle Catholic Church.

This national organization was co-founded by the mother of Maddux, Cheryl Haggard, who lost her son in February 2005. They are always looking for new volunteers for photography, assistance and retouching. Please visit their site for additional information.

Thank you for helping the bereaved parents of our community.

Peace Love and Hugs


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