Emma’s Footprints is a non-profit organization based in Valparaiso, Indiana compassionately dedicated to supporting families with babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, as well as families who have experienced the loss of a baby from pregnancy through infancy.


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© 2019 Emma’s Footprints is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization

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Heather Blythe grew up in Illinois and Indiana, and is now a Kouts resident. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Ball State and uses that degree in her career as a probation officer in Porter County. She also works part time as the Kouts Park Director.


Heather tells people she met her husband Tom, a police officer, in jail (she thinks she is funny, we let her think that), as she was working at the jail as a corrections officer when they were introduced. In 2012, the couple married and began building a life and a home together. After three years, they wanted to add a baby to their family of two dogs and a cat. One surgery and one year of trying to conceive later, they got pregnant naturally with their first child, a girl they quickly named Charlotte Hadley Blythe, due in February of 17. Heather’s pregnancy appeared normal until the 22nd gestational week. Charlotte was born sleeping on 9-29-16 due to Amniotic Band Sequence, a congenital condition. While a geneticist assured the Blythes this could not happen again, Heather and Tom, as well as their families, were devastated.


In the whirlwind of grief and chaos following Charlotte’s stillbirth, Heather connected with virtual and local infertility, loss and pregnancy after loss groups, including Emma’s Footprints, for advice (such as how to stop lactating) and support. During this time, she met some amazing families with whom she still regularly communicates. Now, she passionately shares her journey through infertility and loss because these topics are rarely discussed publicly. As a result, she is driven to make herself available to women and families who may feel alone and are unaware of resources available to them.


Heather and Tom sought fertility assistance in December of 2017, and after additional surgeries followed by fertility treatments, they were expecting their rainbow baby! After maintaining positivity and utilizing a great support system while pregnant, they are now navigating parenting after loss. Their son David was born December 13, 2018 and the joy and hope he has brought with his arrival is more than ever expected.


Heather spoke at the Emma’s Footprints Mother’s Day event in May, 2018, and is now a board member of the organization. She is looking forward to the exciting new time that lies ahead for the group.