Saturday, October 27, 2012

Remembering Nancy Marr

Back in 2005 I emailed a birth announcement to tell friends that our Vienna was born.  A friend replied and said that someone from her church just gave birth two weeks prior and named her 10th child Vienna!  What are the odds of that?!  (I mean the name, not high number of kids!  haha!)  So of course that started a new friendship with the Marr family.  :o)
The Viennas now 7.  One blonde and one brunette!
Over the years we've gotten together here and there and Facebook has been a great resource keeping our friendship current.  Patty is my go to person for parenting advice.  Not only does she have many children, they are amazing people.  I love how they interact with one another.  I love her devotion.  And I love how much she really truly lives for God.

In 2007, the Marrs had another daughter naming her Nancy (completely normal name!  haha) and their birth announcement was impressive.  They wrote that they always wondered if God would BLESS them with a special needs child and they were proud to present Nancy to the world.  Wow.  In a world where children are killed in womb because of this diagnosis, they welcomed her with WIDE open and eager arms.

Earlier this year, Patty and I have talked more regularly because I decided to homeschool.  She has been an amazing support to me.  Also for the past two months she's babysat Vienna and Lance every week for me while I go to a bible study at my church.  I love that my kids get that play time with other kids, and in turn Patty likes having the same!  Win, win really - although I think I have the better deal!

Just three weeks ago, we went on a field trip to a farm with a corn maze and other fun activities.  Patty held Nancy in her arms at they bounced along on the cow train pulled by tractor.  It was great fun!
That day we talked a bit about having a special needs child.  Since Colin changed my view on parenting, I am not afraid of a special needs child, but what happens if I had one and I died?  Who'd care for my child?  Just a thought I'd been chewing on.
(I heard a Family Talk broadcast about a man, David Ring who has cerebral palsy and he lost his mom.  I highly recommend you listen to his story HERE.)
Patty said something in her matter of fact way...  She was teaching Nancy life skills like cleaning and would teach her to care for and love children and prep her to be a helper.  So when Patty is gone, she could live with one of her siblings and bless them.  Wow... seen as a helper, not a burden.  It was powerful and just further proved how amazing Patty's parenting skills are, and view on life actually.  She teaches me much!

So going back to Patty watching my kids each week... One of the things she told me was to not worry about colds.  Church nurseries have rules about thick, runny noses, but Patty said that I could drop my kids off (even Colin if need be) if they were too icky for the nursery but still feeling ok to be without me.  (If they stopped going out for a runny nose, they'd never go anywhere!  11 kids under one roof would do that!)

Patty called me Monday, Oct.22 to say that I might want to make other arrangements for my kids for that week.  Her younger kids had an icky bug with a croupy cough and she'd been up a lot through the night. She said I wouldn't want this one.  She protected my kids.  Little 4-year old Nancy had it and although she seemed on the mend, she took a turn for the worse and passed away Thursday morning.

There is no foot so small that it cannot leave an imprint on this world.

My heart aches for a Momma's heart and a grieving family.  In true Marr style, her obituary is nothing less than focused on the gift her life brought.  They were delighted by her.  And their delight has literally changed my view on children and parenting. Her little life might have been short but she certainly affected me.  I am sure there are many others who have their stories, but I wanted to tell mine.  To honor her and the wonderful life she lived.

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. ~James 1:17

Nancy Blanchard Marr

Official Obituary:
Nancy Blanchard Marr 
(December 10, 2007 - October 25, 2012) 

NANCY BLANCHARD MARR, age 4, of 110 Pamela Ave., Groton, died at home from the complications of croup, passing away from us and into the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ on Thursday, October 25, 2012. Nancy was born in New London on December 10, 2007, the youngest daughter of Christopher T. and Patricia McCarthy Marr. We welcomed our Down Syndrome daughter as a gift of God and she delighted us all with her beautiful smile and, attention-getting “conversation”, holding her own among her 10 home schooled siblings. Besides her parents, she is survived by her brothers: Brian of Moscow, ID, Kevin, and Gordon, and her sisters: Michelle, Sharon, Emily, Laura, Julie, Tracy, and Vienna. She is also survived by her paternal grandparents: Harold and Diane Blanchard Marr of Kendall Park, NJ, and her maternal grandparents: James and Louise O’Donnell McCarthy of Queensbury, NY, as well as many loving aunts, uncles and cousins. Visiting hours will be held on Friday evening, November 2, from 6 until 8pm at the Byles-Groton Memorial Home, 310 Thames St. A funeral service will be held in the Presbyterian Church of Coventry, 55 Trowbridge Road, Coventry, CT at 11 o’clock on Saturday, November 3. Interment will be in Elmwood Cemetery, Searsport, ME, on 1 o’clock Saturday, November 10. Donations in her memory may be directed to the Care Net Pregnancy Resource Center. 32 Huntington St., Suite 1, New London, CT 06320.  


Patty said...

Thank you so much, Mary. You are a balm to my heart.

Anonymous said...

Beautifully said! Sally

Sally said...

Beautifully said!