Grieving Mom Donates 18.5 Gallons Of MIlk For Needy Babies

Mom Donates 18.5 Gallons Of Breastmilk Following Her Newborn’s Death, Claims Pumping Helped Her Heal

A California mother has turned her personal tragedy into a touching gift for other mothers and their newborns in need. She refused to allow her breast milk to go to waste after her newborn’s sudden death.

Just wanted to write a little something for my new followers on Instagram. I am so honored that God able me to share my story with the world. I almost can't believe all the positivity my story has accumulated. I feel so blessed by all sweet encouraging words from all the people that have never met me. I've always wanted to inspire people, but never knew this would be the reason why. If my story is bringing hope, and light, I couldn't be more happy. A year ago on Christmas I also had a miscarriage, I felt like it broke me, but I came out of it. The next month I got pregnant with Ronan. He has helped me inspire people. Because of Ronan I was able to give his gift of breast milk. Loss is a very difficult thing to come out of. For all the mamas out there saying they aren't strong enough or brave enough to do what I did, you are crazy! Loss alone requires endless amounts of bravery, and strength! Not letting loss destroy you, and completely consume your life, in itself is an amazing thing. I want you mamas out their to love yourself because you are already a wonderful warrior! I sure hope you all have a wonderful Christmas! Thank you so much for all the love, and sharing mine and Ronan's story. Cayden and Ronan have each other, and I do believe one day I'll see them again. It's not goodbye forever, it's I'll see you again someday. #loveyourself #moms #loss #bravery #strength #babies #warriors #livetoinspire #love #compassion #christmas #blessed #brothers

A photo posted by Ariel Matthews (@little_mermaid_13) on

According to Inside Edition, Ariel Matthews, 25, made it her mission to donate 18.5 gallons of breastmilk after her son suddenly passed away.

Mom Turns Baby’s Death Into A Great Gift

Ariel welcomed her beautiful baby boy, Ronan but due to birth complications, he died at the age of 11 days in October. Her son was born with heart defects and suffered a series of strokes shortly after his birth. According to WOKV, the strokes caused catastrophic damage to the infant’s brain.

2016 is coming to an end… as it does, try to remember all the things you are thankful for, instead of just being glad this year is over. I am so thankful I got to spend another year alive and healthy. I have a beautiful, wonderful, crazy 3 year old, and I get to be his mommy. I am thankful that Noah and I got to experience AFV. What a wonderful thing to happen to us. I am thankful I got to protect Ronan in my womb till it was time for to come. I am thankful I was able to keep myself healthy with Crossfit for Ronan. I am thankful I got to spend 11 days with my precious Ronan. I am even more thankful that my story is spreading light for other women in situations like mine. 2016 may have started out really rough… shoot it even seemed like it was going end all kinds of crazy, but actually it ending quite nicely. I had an extremely wonderful thanksgiving, and even more so Christmas with my family. No matter what happened this year, I am choosing to find the best in everything, or at least choosing to believe that something good that will come. So, I ask you to look back at your whole year, and find that one thing you can be thankful for. I am sure it's there, even if you have to dig a little. Happy New Year's Eve; let's start the new year with our heads held high! #newyear #thankful #loveyourself #inspire #happiness #blessed #love #comeon2017

A photo posted by Ariel Matthews (@little_mermaid_13) on

It was a devastating loss for her family. However, the California young mother found a way to turn the painful loss into something inspiring.

Matthews posted her son’s story on social media revealing that she had a miscarriage and a stillbirth in the past year. Even so, Matthews chooses to see the good in everything, even her son’s painful death.

“Since Ronan passed, I decided to go for 1,000 ounces, especially since my body was producing a lot more milk this time,” Ariel said.

“I was able to donate the total amount in just eight weeks.”

Donating Out Of Love For Ronan

Matthews’ father, Eric was the man behind the brilliant idea that helped Ariel reach the goal of 18.5 gallons of breastmilk. He encouraged her to continue to pump to surpass her body weight. Ariel loved the idea and found that it gave her a goal to work toward, which helped keep her mind off missing her newborn so much.

Matthews ended up donating 2,370 ounces or 148 pounds and gave the milk personally to mothers who couldn’t produce milk themselves.

“Donating was an incredible feeling; particularly as it was all because of my sweet Ronan,” Ariel said.

“I wanted to share his gift of milk; he’s the reason I was able to.”

The stay-at-home mom has a 3-year-old son named Noah. When he was born, she had trouble nursing and struggled to produce enough milk. She wanted to make sure all mothers, even those who couldn’t provide their infant their own breastmilk could give their child the best start.

After Ronan had passed away, her milk supply was high, so it came to her to store the milk and donate to those in need.

In the 11 days of Ronan's sweet life, I pumped 398oz of milk/colostrum. I plan to donate, and to keep pumping for awhile. If anyone knows any local mamas in need, I'd love to give it to them. #sanjose #breastmilk #pumping #liquidgold #donate

A photo posted by Ariel Matthews (@little_mermaid_13) on

“It felt really good to donate it all, especially because I would get hugs from the moms when they came to pick it up and thank yous,” Ariel explained.

“And that the moms were trusting me to give their babies my milk — it feels really good.They would send me pictures of the babies right after drinking my milk, all passed out and full. So that was really cool.”

Her breast milk went to three different moms, two of which said their milk never came in after childbirth and another who adopted a newborn.

I did it! This bag is the last 11oz I needed to reach my goal of 1000 ounces to donate. #1000oz #breastmilk #donate #breastisbest #rememberingronan #helpingbabies #love

A photo posted by Ariel Matthews (@little_mermaid_13) on

The California mom documented her story on Instagram. She started hearing from others moms who were touched by her story.

“I like to know that there’s actually people being encouraged by this. I’ve even gotten messages on Facebook saying this has really helped me, that I hope I can be like this.”

Her supporters flooded her social media accounts to tell her they were inspired by her kind nature and her willingness to help others, especially considering the loss she suffered.

The American Board of Pediatrics recommends that all infants are fed breast milk until six-months-old. They strongly urge mothers to nurse their babies until 12 months, if possible.

[Featured Image by Karunyapas/Shutterstock]