Shane Pointon’s son would have turned 7 this year, and the pain of losing him is never far from his mind or his heart.
Jay Lee was stillborn at 22 weeks, and Shane says he didn't properly grieve or even acknowledge the searing pain that scarred his life.
But he now has a lifelike replica of the baby he lost — a doll with blond hair and a serene countenance that brings Shane comfort and closure, he says.
“Just having him gives me a little something of him,” he told InsideEdition.com Monday in a phone interview from Australia. "We have a little area dedicated to him."
The doll was ordered by his wife, Sharon, who experienced a similar heartbreak 19 years ago during a previous marriage.
She lost a daughter at 24 weeks. Earlier this year, she saw advertisements online for “reborn” dolls designed to look like a missing child.
She ordered one for herself. “I did it to commemorate my daughter,” she said. “None of our babies were validated,” she said of herself and her husband. “My daughter was thrown out as medical waste.”
The doll brought her peace and her husband was impressed.
“Out of the blue, he said, 'Do you think we could get one for Jay Lee?'" Sharon recounted.
She was floored, but pleased. "So I ordered it," she said. The two conferred on what color the hair should be, and chose a face from hundreds of samples. An artist created the baby’s image from those selections.
“We chose a baby that had gone to full term — what we should have had, instead of what we lost,” she said.
"I (saw) what it did for Sharon," Shane said. And he wanted the same for himself.
The dolls costs about $630 in U.S. currency, or about $800 Australian dollars.
When Jay Lee's memorial package arrived, Shane wept as he unpacked newborn-sized clothes. He pulled out a hoodie and a tiny pair of pants. Then he unwrapped the doll created in his son's image and had to put his head down while sobs overtook him.
Sharon captured the moment on her cell phone.
“I knew I was going to be emotional,” Shane said. “I finally had something of him at home.”