Little Beaner, Rest In Peace

January 13, 2009

Hi Catherine,

Don’t know if you remember me, but it’s Marie. You helped me with my beautiful baby girl Beaner. I had been wanting to let you know about this, but I know you have your own stuff you are going through and well I didn’t know how to say it… But I just wanted to let you know that my baby girl Mia passed away On Oct 27, 2008 due to SIDS. She was 13 1/2 weeks old and getting so big! Its so hard to believe that its going on 3 months that she’s been gone. I would tell myself, “tell Catherine next week” but next week turned into well this long…. Thanks for all you did for us when I needed people there for me… I just thought you would want to know….

Always,

Marie

I never met Beaner. I never held her hand or touched her cheek. I knew her only through a story that her mother told me, pictures that she sent me, the fragments of a life that she shared and that became, somehow, strangely, briefly, intertwined with my own.

You can read her story here, and here. It’s a beautiful story, the story of a child who was so loved that her mother fought back all of her fear to keep her, for better or for worse, for the sake of a life that she wanted to nurture as her own, on her own terms. Her mother reached out to me, and to you, to all of you, for support and guidance and she drew some of her strength from that and she made the bold step of clasping Beaner to her heart and deciding to never let go and that, that was amazing. Deciding to never let go can be a difficult choice – for some, the wrong choice, an impossible choice – but she made it and she was happy and she kept her Beaner and Beaner was loved.

And now Beaner is gone, and I don’t know, I just don’t know what to say, because this was the story that was supposed to have the happy ending and although I tell myself that Marie had her Beaner for all the time that Beaner had on this earth, and that that is wonderful, that that is a gift, it remains that to have such a precious gift and then to have it snatched away is tragic beyond measure. So I don’t what to say. And it is not, in any case, my place to say. It is not my right, to sing an elegy for Beaner, to wring philosophy from her death. Not my right at all.

I didn’t know Beaner – little Mia Catherine – but she found her way into a corner of my heart, and there she remains, this child I did not know and will never know but do love, a little, from a distance, from – now – a tragic distance, nonetheless. There she remains, and there she is mourned, and there she will be remembered.


Rest in peace, Mia Catherine. You touched more hearts than you could know.

You can leave condolences to Maria in the comments. She’ll be reading, and I know that the support will mean so much to her.

Then – as I insisted last week, not knowing how soon I would be confronted by the demands of my own words – hug your children. And your moms. And anyone whose heart touches yours. And be grateful.

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    { 155 comments }

    Sarcastica January 14, 2009 at 3:41 pm

    I can’t imagine how you must feel Marie, and words fail me now as I try to think of something to ease your aching heart.

    Your Beaner was a beautiful girl, as you know. I’m sending hugs and strength your way. I’m so sorry for your loss.

    And Catherine? Your posts are always so poetic and beautiful.

    delaneydiariesmama January 14, 2009 at 4:11 pm

    I remember reading your story. I am so sorry for your loss.

    jess January 14, 2009 at 4:15 pm

    This is so heartbreaking. I am grieved for you, Marie, but so glad that Mia got to spend those months with you and you with her.

    Your family is in my prayers.

    Alicia January 14, 2009 at 4:29 pm

    Marie, I’m so sorry for your loss. Please accept my condolences, my heart goes out to you and your sweet family.
    Alicia

    ewe are here January 14, 2009 at 4:30 pm

    Heartbreaking. These things should never happen.

    I’m so sorry.

    Kimberly January 14, 2009 at 4:32 pm

    My heart is breaking. I am so sorry, Marie. I just know that your sweet girl is in heaven being snuggled by angels.

    Niksmom January 14, 2009 at 4:33 pm

    Words seem inadequate but they are all I have. I am so very sorry for your unimagineable loss.

    Janet January 14, 2009 at 4:55 pm

    My heart hurts for you, Marie. I’m sorry.

    sugaredharpy January 14, 2009 at 4:57 pm

    I am so sorry, so very sorry. I am keeping you in my thoughts.

    Bridge January 14, 2009 at 5:03 pm

    Echoing all the other well wishes and condolences, my heart hurts for you. She was so beautiful!

    Miscellaneous-Mum January 14, 2009 at 5:21 pm

    I am so sorry Maria. Words cannot say. x

    Neo-Geek Girl January 14, 2009 at 5:23 pm

    No words can express it… but I am so sorry Marie.

    ((hug))

    mamatulip January 14, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    My heart aches for all of you.

    Kim January 14, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    Maria,

    I am so tremendously sorry for your loss. My oldest daughter died when she was 8 months old, I know how much it hurts me, so I can imagine how much you are hurting.
    I just wrote a pretty lengthy blog post the other day about loss, if you’re feeling up to it, go on over and read it. Tomorrow I will have another post about loss for those who have a loved one whose child has died. — http://prairie-mama.blogspot.com
    Many prayers for you and your family.

    Domestic Extraordinaire January 14, 2009 at 5:52 pm

    Marie-my heart goes out to you and your family. Many thoughts and prayers. (((hugs)))

    Courtney Paris January 14, 2009 at 6:11 pm

    Marie,

    I don’t have any words to say just how sorry I am.

    I’m praying for you and everyone else who has been affected by little beaners passing.

    MemeGRL January 14, 2009 at 6:16 pm

    Marie, your story and your family were inspirational to me. They still are. My condolences to you and Lil Man and Itty Bitty on your loss, and my prayers go to you for healing. May the memories of baby Mia bring you more joy than sorrow as time passes. In light—

    Queen of the Mayhem January 14, 2009 at 6:28 pm

    I pray that God will grant you the strength to make it through this horrible situation. The only blessing is Mia is in a better place. Sending prayers and condolences!

    Robin January 14, 2009 at 7:00 pm

    I’m so sorry to hear this. My condolences to Maria and family.

    Anonymous January 14, 2009 at 7:11 pm

    amen

    I am so sorry for your loss. Be well.
    klcrab

    J from Ireland January 14, 2009 at 7:17 pm

    Marie, I am so sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers to you and your family.

    Erin January 14, 2009 at 7:21 pm

    Marie,

    I am so very sorry to hear of your loss. I had thought of you and little Beaner often since this post, and hoped that things were going well for you and your family. I had so hoped for a better outcome for all of you. I know there isn’t anything that I can say to console you, but know that you’re in my thoughts, and have been.

    Erin

    Kaye January 14, 2009 at 7:22 pm

    Oh Marie…I am so, so sorry. I can’t even begin to imagine how you must feel. I wish all the peace and healing to you and your family that is possible.

    ((hugs))

    Laurel January 14, 2009 at 8:01 pm

    My heart is saddened by your loss and mere words do not say enough, yes we are strangers but we are parents together we share your pain. Glad you had her in your life as difficult as things have turned. Hugs to you all.

    Sammanthia January 14, 2009 at 8:08 pm

    I am so very sorry for your loss… my thoughts are with you.

    Fairly Odd Mother January 14, 2009 at 8:11 pm

    Marie, I am so sorry for your loss. Thank you for trusting us enough and thinking enough of us to let us know. My thoughts are with you.

    Amber January 14, 2009 at 8:21 pm

    Maria, My heart is breaking for you. My prayers and thoughts are with you. I can feel your strength and love and it is an example to me of the reason we’re here: to share, love, cry and rejoice together. I wish you the very best.

    Shannon January 14, 2009 at 8:24 pm

    I’m so, so sorry for your loss, Marie. I can’t imagine. My thoughts and prayers are with you in this difficult time. Your story touched us all.

    jodifur January 14, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    I’m so sorry for your loss. I can not even imagine what you are going through.

    Alli {Mrs. Fussypants} January 14, 2009 at 8:58 pm

    Oh Marie, I am so sorry. My prayers will be with you.

    Marylin January 14, 2009 at 9:11 pm

    I’m so sorry. xx

    Sissy January 14, 2009 at 9:44 pm

    I’m just so sorry, Marie.

    Melissa January 14, 2009 at 10:07 pm

    This is heartbreaking news.

    I’m so sorry, Marie. I’ll keep you in my prayers.

    Classy Mommy January 14, 2009 at 10:10 pm

    Marie I am totally heartbroken for you and your family over the loss of your beautiful little girl. You are in my thoughts.

    ajillofalltrades January 14, 2009 at 10:13 pm

    Marie, I am so sorry for your loss. She was such a beautiful girl and looks so sweet.

    I can’t imagine the pain you are going through and hope to never have to.

    My thoughts are with you and your family.

    Her Bad Mother January 14, 2009 at 10:32 pm

    Anonymous – why does the story sound fishy?

    My posting any of Marie’s/Beaner’s story has only ever been my idea. She originally only left a comment on this blog and I responded to her and asked her to e-mail me so that I could respond privately. I subsequently asked, after we had corresponded, if I could share her story. And then after we had corresponded again, I asked again.

    I have no reason to believe that the correspondence that she and I have shared is based on any sort of falsehood. I certainly haven’t shared all of our correspondence, nor any of the e-mails in their entirety, so I don’t know on what basis they should be doubted.

    In any case, does it matter? Really? What is gained by doubting the story? Some greater security in the protective blanket of cynicism? Doubt here, is, I think, lose/lose: if the story is true (as I believe it to be), then the allegation is cruel. If it is false, then doesn’t there remain some deep tragedy here, some figurative loss, that a child would be ‘killed off’ deceptively to get our attention?

    I don’t know what there is to gain from doubting the story. I do know that there is much to lose. I chose not to lose.

    Corina - Down to Earth Mama January 14, 2009 at 10:38 pm

    My heart-felt thoughts are with the family.

    Sarcastica January 14, 2009 at 10:42 pm

    WOW Anonymous, some times speaking these words is uncalled for. Catherine is definitely not looking for attention or a reaction.

    She’s dealing with her grief, and reminding us all to hold life more precious to our hearts because of how quickly it can be lost. If you want to take her words and assume something cynical and dark, then do so – but next time think before you speak, because hearing that just upset her all the more.

    Sorry Catherine, had to be said. :( Hugs to you.

    Shonda Little January 14, 2009 at 10:47 pm

    My heart hurts. I am so sorry for this loss.

    Anonymous January 14, 2009 at 10:47 pm

    I did not mean that Catherine was looking for any kind of reaction and I’m sorry if my words hurt anyone. I have see other bloggers and kind people on message boards be taken by malicious people with phony stories.

    I am hoping that this is NOT the case here and that Catherine was not fooled by someone taking advantage of her kind and well meaning heart.

    F*Lush January 14, 2009 at 10:48 pm

    There are no words to ease the pain from losing a child. I hope in the moments when you need strength the most, you feel the prayers being said for you and your family. So sorry for your loss.

    HBM…that was a wonderful response to the anonymous..and I’ll never understand people that post a comment hidden behind their computer screen…I’ve enjoyed your writing for over a year now..thank you for sharing Marie’s story with us……

    Anonymous January 14, 2009 at 10:48 pm

    I`d just like to say that this is too sad. My heart breaks for you.

    Also would just like to add. If you don`t have nice to say – don`t say it.

    Vickie January 14, 2009 at 10:50 pm

    I am so sorry for your loss, Marie.

    happykatie January 14, 2009 at 11:00 pm

    Marie, I am so very sorry for your heartache, but I am very happy for you for all of your wonderful memories of your tiny little gal.

    What a special mommy you are and a wonderfully-loved little one you shared with us. Much love to you and your family. I am really just so sorry.

    Anonymous January 14, 2009 at 11:01 pm

    Thank you everyone for your thoughts and prayers. Thank you HBM for remembering Mia. For anonymous i’m sorry you feel the way you do and i hope you will never have to go thru what i am going thru. To accuse me of lying is out of line, you don’t know me. And you don’t know the hell I’ve been thru this past 10 weeks. One thing i have learned is life is too short n i’m done wasting my precious time on you. thank you for everyone else’s sincere and genuine thoughts. Marie

    Her Bad Mother January 14, 2009 at 11:03 pm

    Anonymous: I understand, I do. And I don’t want you to get bashed about here for raising the issue. It’s just that it’s such a dark issue, and does cast a shadow, and, god, it kinda makes my tummy hurt just thinking about it, from all angles (not least – Marie will read this, and my god, ouch. If someone suggested to me that my nephew’s story were false, for example, I would lose my mind a little.)

    I get the concern; I know of people who have been duped by stories. But that’s not the case here. (To what extent it would matter if it were is an entirely different question and one that just messes with my head entirely.)

    Her Bad Mother January 14, 2009 at 11:08 pm

    Marie, Marie – please please please ignore that comment. Beaner’s story touched so many, as you’ve seen. All the love here is sincere and heartfelt and abundant.

    I’m so sorry.

    Shash January 14, 2009 at 11:11 pm

    Wow, I am so sorry Marie, and for Mia.

    My heart goes out to you and your family.

    marla January 14, 2009 at 11:13 pm

    why post anonymously…If you are posting on the internet don’t wan’t to be heard…and seen, and known….I don’t get it. If you don’t want *certain* people to know, don’t post it publicly!

    toyfoto January 14, 2009 at 11:23 pm

    So sorry for your loss. I am heartbroken for you.

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