"All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible." ~ T. E. Lawrence
Last weekend I found out that some close friends lost their 6 week old baby girl. She passed away in her sleep, a victim of sudden unexpected infant death (SUID – a rare form of SIDS) . Her passing has been tremendously painful for my friends and my heart breaks for them. I struggled with what to write as I thought of the life of this Little One. I photographed her as a “baby bump” when her parents married this summer, I planned her baby shower in the fall, and now I’m coordinating her vigil this weekend. I wept at her birth, filled with joy at meeting her. Now I weep at her passing, grieved to say goodbye. Here is my tribute to a Little One:
This angel joined the ranks of humanity for too short a time, but I’m convinced that she left a far-reaching and profound legacy. In her six weeks of life, she impacted hundreds. In her moments among us, she wrapped tiny hands around our fingers and our hearts, and now she won’t let go.
My friends are an amazing couple, filled with incredible strength and unfathomable love. With the passing of their precious and long-expected daughter they have grown closer; they’ve comforted and loved one another more than I had imagined possible. This sweet baby has cemented their bond – that’s a powerful legacy for a Little One.
Mutual friends have contacted me over the week, sharing their sadness and concern for the mourning parents. So many have asked how they could help, desperate to share in the burden of loss and love. Some of them hadn’t even met the sweet Little One but they ached knowing she was gone. She has brought friends and family together in selflessness and caring to uphold her parents. Her legacy continues as her family sees how much they are loved.
This little girl’s daddy serves in the Army and I stand amazed at the comraderie I’ve seen from his brothers-in-arms. They immediately formed a meal chain to ease the daily burdens of this family and have been at the ready to support in whatever way they can. A tiny baby has brought strangers together in solace, she has revealed true brotherhood and beautiful humanity. The legacy of this Little One has spread so far.
Several churches and social organizations have offered support to the family during this painful time. As I work with some of these people, they have commented to me on how beautiful this darling child was; they’ve been touched by her story and her photos. This Little One has extended her legacy throughout our community.
She is treasured as a priceless gift from Above. She is missed terribly and tearfully. And she lives on in our hearts and memories. She brought joy and hope into our lives – a truly grand legacy for such a small person, and a life well-worth celebrating!