Today I am looking forward to introducing you to my fellow loss mom, Oneisha, who is Jaden’s mom and the founder of Little Bean Foundation, an organization based in Quebec all about spreading awareness about baby loss and connecting loss parents with resources. Oneisha is also a bereavement doula, working to help loss parents advocate for themselves.
Oneisha answered a few questions for me and I am excited to share what she had to say with you today!
Tell me a little about your story.
On April 8th, 2021 at 2:32pm, my beautiful son, Jaden, made his grand entrance and departed from this world. He was 17 weeks and 3 days old. I was diagnosed with “Cervical insufficiency” or an “Incompetent cervix” which occurs when weak cervical tissue causes or contributes to premature birth or the loss of an otherwise healthy pregnancy. After booking the ultrasound for my gender reveal, I went into the CHUM hospital on April 7th, 2021, for a second opinion after noticing a handful amount of blood and a specific pain that I knew was not the average cramps. My gynaecologist would not listen to me when I had let him know numerous times that I was experiencing a lot of pain but he told me that the pain I was experiencing was normal but I knew it in my heart that it wasn’t. Come to find out that I was actually having contractions the entire time. My cervix had opened and Jaden was already head down and ready to come out.
The doctor at the CHUM let me know that this situation was preventable and that my doctor should have caught that I had an incompetent cervix around 12 weeks of my pregnancy with Jaden. She told me that I would have to give birth to the baby in the morning and that baby wouldn’t make it and if he were to stay inside any longer that my own life would be at risk. I heard the news alone as my boyfriend was not able to accompany me at first because of the COVID-19 regulations.
Shortly after being placed into a birthing room to prepare myself to give birth to my baby boy, the nurse said that my boyfriend could come ONLY because of the situation. I was placed in a room where everyone’s living baby was crying... but I didn’t get the chance to hear my baby cry… all I heard was silence and tears. I didn’t know his gender until he was given to me, but I knew in my heart that he was a boy. While waiting for the gender, I would call the baby “Little Bean or Beanie”.
My boyfriend and I had decided on his name a month back if he were truly a boy and it was the perfect name, we both agreed without hesitation. My baby had all his fingers and all his toes. He had a beautiful smile on his face. I’ll never forget how the sun had shined so brightly into the room as if heaven’s gates were literally welcoming Jaden. It was such a beautiful day. When I held Jaden, I couldn’t even cry at first, I just told him how much we ALL loved him, how much I wanted him, how much I had prepared for him, how much of a good life we would have had together and how I will make him proud!! I quietly said to myself, “Little Bean Foundation”. I went into the hospital thinking everything was going to be okay but instead, I left the hospital without my baby and carrying a box of his things. But that day that I left the hospital, birthed a new woman in me and made me realize that change needs to occur especially within the health care system. This is why I continue to work hard to help others have their voices heard and help them advocate for their health. This is why I continue to push grief in people’s face because you’ll never ever forget your loved ones and I’ll never ever forget my baby.
How do you honor your baby?
I honor my baby in every way, whether it’s helping a fellow loss mama or father with a keepsake or memento box or a conversation, whether it’s speaking about him every day, whether it’s advocating for someone’s health, whether it’s making history within the cemetery that he’s buried, whether it’s leaving our mark in this world. I am still fighting to honor him every day.
Tell a little bit about your baby and your baby’s name.
My boyfriend and I had taken a walk together around our area at the time, we were talking about our life is going to be with our new baby (at the time, we didn’t know whether the baby was a boy or a girl as yet). We were going through names but my boyfriend didn’t agree with any of them 😅 but then he mentioned that he had a name on his heart and he said “Jaden”, I FELL IN LOVE WITH THE NAME! I almost immediately started calling the baby Jaden without even knowing that he was a boy. I just knew in my heart that Jaden was my baby’s name. Jaden had such a strong heart. He was dancing in my stomach, the doctor that took my ultrasound said that the baby was dancing in my stomach 🥺. I love to dance! So knowing that my baby boy was dancing in my belly made me feel so connected to him. He’s definitely my son 😌. He was beautiful. He had a smile on his face. My beautiful boy, Jaden. 🤍
What are some grief triggers for you?
There are many things that are triggering.. sometimes, it’s seeing a brand new pregnancy. Sometimes, it’s seeing a happy family. Sometimes, it’s a baby bump. Sometimes, it’s the weather. Sometimes, it’s a song. Sometimes, it’s being told to move on. Sometimes, it’s not seeing a positive pregnancy test. Sometimes, it’s the silence in the house. Sometimes, it’s not being where I feel I should have been in life.
How has your baby changed you?
Jaden changed my life in every way. He made me a mother. He made me happy, he still makes me so happy!! He made me have purpose in my life even without him being physically here. He taught me how to love and how I want to be loved. He taught me to respect my boundaries. He taught me to be more vulnerable, more carefree, more helpful, more appreciative, more ambitious, more fearless, more creative and he’s taught me to love myself all over again.
Tell me about Little Bean Foundation.
Little Bean Foundation is meant to bring awareness to all types of pregnancy and infant loss, to educate women and men about their bodies, to provide the necessary support as a Bereavement Doula and advocate for future safe, successful and healthier pregnancies. Little Bean Foundation provides a safe space for bereaved parents to be open and vulnerable in order to share their stories about their losses.
What would you tell other parents going through something similar?
There are days where you will feel like giving up, there are days where you may feel like taking on the world, there are days where you may feel like trying again, there are days where you may just want to stay in bed, there are days where you may not even recognize the person that you’ve become in the mirror and that’s okay. You have to grieve at your own pace. You can only grieve at your own pace! Your journey is not meant to be rushed, you are meant to find fulfillment in your journey and I know it’s hard without your baby being physically here, but your baby will always be with you. Don’t hesitate to set boundaries when necessary, don’t hesitate to advocate for your health and don’t hesitate to remember and LIVE for your baby.
What resources/things/practices have helped you in your journey?
Things that have helped me through my journey was speaking up about Jaden. It meant the world to me to create Little Bean Foundation, making books helped me express my pain, becoming a Bereavement Doula helped me feel validated to advocate for my own future pregnancies and for any woman around me. I put out in the world what I wish I was able to receive for myself.
Thank you, Oneisha! If you want to know more about her, Jaden, and Little Bean Foudation, you can follow her on Instagram @littlebeanfoundation.