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From heartache to helping others

Jordan and Dion Sanders held their baby, Elijah. They recently started the Amiah Mae Foundation in honor of Elijah’s deceased twin sister.

When Jordan and Dion Sanders of Lexington experienced a stillbirth, the pain was nearly unbearable, especially after a long battle with infertility and miscarriage. When their son, Elijah, was born last fall, his entrance into the world at 34 weeks gestation was bittersweet, as his twin sister, Amiah Mae, did not survive.

“I certainly didn’t see it happening to us,” said the babies’ mother, Jordan. “Especially since everything was so routine at every ultrasound.”

The Sanders’ realized they needed to do something to help other families who are experiencing the tragedy of stillbirth – especially since one in 100 pregnancies end in stillbirth, and one in 110 births end in infant loss. And because Baptist Health in Lexington has a Perinatal Diagnostic Center, it sees more stillbirths and infant deaths than most hospitals in the state, Sanders said. To help other families, they recently founded the Amiah Mae Foundation, and are in the process of obtaining 501(c)(3) status.

“In our society today, many people don’t want to talk about stillbirth and the impact it has on a family,” she said. “It’s such a difficult, painful journey. We just hope that out of the loss of our daughter we can bring comfort to other families who have to go through the devastation of stillbirth too. You can’t take away the pain of the loss of a child, but you can alleviate other stresses for the family.”

The Amiah Mae Foundation honors Amiah and celebrates her life, and aims to raise money for various organizations in her name. This year’s inaugural event on June 8 will raise money for the Perinatal Bereavement Center at Baptist Health Lexington.

Visit amiahmaefoundation.com.