Paul and Lizette Weinheimer were over-the-moon excited about their second pregnancy. Their five-year-old son, Carson, would officially become a big brother and their family would welcome a new baby boy with open arms.
Just 20 weeks into their second pregnancy, the Weinheimers received devastating and heartbreaking news. They learned that their son, Thomas Walker Weinheimer, would not live long after birth.
“It was a shock for us,” Lizette Weinheimer said. “I don’t know if there are words to describe the feelings we experienced.”
The Weinheimers gave birth to their son at BSA Hospital on November 29, 2016. After the passing of their son, the Weinheimers were flooded with resources to help with their situation.
“The nurses gave us information and with our permission, reached out to friends and other moms who had experienced infant loss,” she said. “BSA, along with these families, reached out letting us know they were here for us. That was really nice.
“I went in search of something that could help me through the whole process. I found a group called Hope Mommies.”
Hope Mommies is a Christian-based organization that provides families experiencing infant loss with a community of support, grief resources and the Hope of Christ. A friend of Lizette’s mother-in-law recommended the organization.
“It’s a group of women who all share a story of infant loss. Together, we provide support to families and educate women on pregnancy and infant loss,” she said.
Lizette attended a Hope Mommies 5k in Abilene where she connected with Hope Moms and learned about Hope Boxes.
Through fundraising efforts, Hope Mommies create Hope Boxes for bereaved women. According to Hope Mommies, each Hope Box “expresses love, provides Biblical truth and invites bereaved women into a community of fellow Hope Moms.”
“A Hope Box is filled with items for a mother,” Weinheimer said. “It has a Bible, a Bible study and various items to pamper and bring comfort to a grieving mother.”
Every year on Thomas’ birthday, the Weinheimer family donates Hope Boxes to BSA Hospital. “The first year I could only donate six boxes to BSA. This year, I was able to donate 20 boxes,” she said.
She recalled her most recent visit to BSA in late November of this year: “We had such a wonderful experience with the nurses,” Lizette said. “They did everything to make it such a special day for us and so, I felt it was the best place to donate them. The staff has such an understanding and compassion for families in such situations.”
“One of the things I’ve learned over the past few years is that we’re not meant to understand why, but we’re just meant to have hope and know that God gives us this hope that one day we will hold our babies again,” Weinheimer said.
The Weinheimers are working towards creating an Amarillo Chapter of Hope Mommies. Currently, they participate in the Lubbock Chapter of Hope Mommies which is helping provide boxes to the Amarillo area.
“My goal is to provide more and more each year,” Weinheimer said. “It’s really sad that we have to provide stuff like this because you never want a parent to go through anything like that.”
to learn more about Hope Mommies or to make a donation.