Kaitlyn and Andy Govert have turned their personal tragedy into support for others that have suffered the loss of an infant.
In honor of their daughter Peyton Jean, who died at 25 weeks gestation, the Crown Point couple donated books, pre-made scrapbook pages and heartbeat recorder stuffed animals to Franciscan Health Crown Point. The family also donated to the fetal maternal medicine office at Franciscan Health Crown Point.
“This was made possible by our friends and family who wanted to help us honor Peyton. We decided the best way to do that was to help other families who were grieving the loss of their baby,” said Kaitlyn, who works for Franciscan Health as a physical therapist at Franciscan Point Outpatient Rehabilitation.
The stuffed animals, which were provided to the maternal fetal medicine office, have heartbeat recorders that hospital staff can use to record an infant’s heartbeat for the family to keep. “We were given the gift of Peyton's heartbeat in a lamb, so we wanted to make sure all parents had this if they wanted it,” Kaitlyn said.
She said the scrapbooking supplies were also a way to “pay it forward,” since the labor and delivery nurses took photos and put together a little scrapbook of their time with Peyton. The Goverts also donated books to help siblings understand and to support moms and dads going through infant loss. In all, the donations should be enough to last a year or more.
“The books are a wonderful addition to our bereavement program and will bring comfort to patient’s suffering a loss,” said Toni Gershman, RN, nurse manager at the Family Birth Center.
Kaitlyn said that while the experience is still sad, she wanted the love they had for Peyton to show by giving back to others during a difficult time. “I would tell parents not to be afraid to seek help if they think they need it, and to be kind to themselves. It’s an unbelievably hard experience to go through,” she added.