One of the best friends I’ve ever had in my lifetime of beautiful friendships lost her sweet baby granddaughter last night. Baby Bear (which is what I will call her to respect her privacy) was diagnosed with Alper’s Syndrome at age 19 months after a series of what they thought were strokes. Baby Bear is an appropriate nickname because her mother is a Momma Bear like none other. The beauty and strength of her momma is a tribute and inspiration to all mommas who should never have to face the death of a child.
So many followed along on a Facebook page that Momma Bear put up. We prayed unceasingly for this little one as she faced challenge after challenge. We prayed for her mommy and daddy and big sisters. What strength and courage they showed this little one, and how they lifted her up and honored her beautiful life. It was something to behold, it truly was.
Tears stream down my face as I think of the loss they feel today, but I know in their hearts they fought the good fight for their Baby Bear and they were constantly rewarded by her smiles. Baby Bear smiled all the time, and each smile touched the hearts of all those who witnessed them. In her innocence and her illness, Baby Bear inspired us. As her Na Na wrote this morning: “She touched the lives of people we don’t know and showed us all that life should be lived with a smile…”
As a faithful woman, I truly have no answers why one child will be healthy and another sick. I only know that God has a plan for each of His children, and Baby Bear was one, and in these short years, she has inspired literally thousands. Her life blessed us, it reminded us that inside each of us is a smile no matter how challenging life is. The image of Baby Bear’s smiles will live on forever, and her courage will continue to inspire.