Being a Father (and Mother) is a truly unique experience and a feeling that you can only understand by becoming one. It is filled with the most incredible highs and, unfortunately, sometimes the most incredible lows.
I am reminded of this as I sit down to write having just returned from a funeral for a young teenager in our church. His father, mother and sister sat in the same front pew that my wife, Cathy, and I uncomfortably occupied just over 21 years ago when we said goodbye to our 8-week old daughter, Haley.
This Dad (a loving and involved Dad) has many more wonderful memories of his son to hold onto than I have of my young daughter, but he does, unfortunately, share with me a great sorrow- the many shattered dreams of things we imagined experiencing with these particular children…high school (maybe college), family vacations, dating, a walk down the aisle and many, many more.
Thankfully, not all Dads (and Moms) experience this in their lifetimes, but far too many still do particularly when it comes to Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (of which SIDS is a subset). Those shattered dreams are what drove my wife and I to start Halo Innovations and remain a large part of our motivation over 20 years later.
Despite the small amount of time we had with our daughter, Haley, she had a profound impact on us, those around us, her younger siblings- Scott, Sander and Katie- and, through HALO, many people we will never ever meet.
And despite the pain of losing her, we would never give up the opportunity to have known her and never give up the opportunity to experience the “normal” highs and lows we’ve had with her brothers and sister.
As we approach Father's Day, I would like to wish all you Dads a Happy Father’s Day and a belated Happy Mother’s Day to all you Moms. Tell your children how much you love them each and every day and make the most of your relationship with them through both life’s highs and lows for, after all, that is what being a parent is all about. Something you can’t know until you become one.
Bill with wife Cathy and their children Sander, Katie and Scott.
Bill Schmid is the Founder of HALO Innovations. He began researching sleeping environments after he lost a daughter to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome in 1991. Since 1994, he and his company, HALO Innovations, have worked to develop products that encourage healthier and safer sleeping as well as bring peace of mind to your home.