A Purple Butterfly on a Baby’s Crib Is Not Just for Decoration. The Real Reason Is Heartbreakingly. This mother was utterly heartbroken just hours after giving birth, but came up with an idea that could save plenty of other families from having to relive the same pain.
Millie Smith and her husband Lewis Cann weren’t all that surprised to hear they were having twins, as it ran in the family. But they also knew that no set of twins had survived in tact.
As reported by The Epoch Times, just 12 weeks into Smith’s pregnancy, the couple received the devastating news that one of their daughters, Skye, would not survive more than a few minutes after birth.
Skye had a brain condition known as anencephaly, where the skull does not form properly and eventually leaves the brain exposed. There is no cure for the condition and babies often pass away within minutes of birth.
To make matters worse, doctors then told the couple that their other daughter, Kelly, also had no guaranteed chance of survival.
When Smith was just 30 weeks pregnant, she gave birth at Kingston Hospital in London.
Suddenly, Skye cried as she gave birth. This is unusual for a baby with her condition, and Smith and Kahn were warned that she is likely to be calm and quiet.
Despite being warned that Skye would have seconds to live, she survived for 3 hours, giving her parents some time to love her before she passed away.
Just minutes before she passed away, Cann took her to intensive care to see her sister Kelly, and lying in her twin bed, she breathed her last.
But the trauma was not over for the couple. A few days later, Smith was sitting next to Kelly in a state of intense suspense when another woman who had twins casually told Smith that she was glad she didn’t have twins.
The remark was another devastating blow to the grieving mother, who could not even get up to leave the room before bursting into inconsolable sobs.
Smith couldn’t calm down enough to explain to the other mother, but he was inspired by the terrifying moment with a great idea.
She wanted a way to let everyone know—without having to talk about it—that the baby in the crib might have lost a sibling at birth.
This would also honor the lost child and inform other parents so that no one else has to suffer their pain again because of a misguided but well-intentioned comment.
Smith chose the image of purple butter. The insect is indicative of fledgling babies, and purple can be suitable for both boys and girls.
She soon launched a crowdfunding campaign to produce a purple butterfly sticker that could be placed on NICU beds to help identify multiple babies where not all babies survive.
Over 100 hospitals across the UK have embraced the idea, even putting up signs outside NICUs to warn visitors of what they might mean.
“When visiting this neonatal unit as a partner, relative or friend, please note the butterfly logo on each cot. This represents a baby that was part of multiple pregnancies, but unfortunately not all babies survived.”
As a result of Smith’s campaign, she also brought the topic of missing babies to the fore, which many people hadn’t talked about before.
She wanted to support other families in her situation, knowing how devastating a casual remark can be.