When I was pregnant with my children, I never opted for the screenings and tests to determine if there might be any abnormalities. Shawn was born with Down syndrome, and we didn't know until he was 1 day old. Never saw it coming! Not in a million years! Devastation and fear socked me in the gut and between the eyes.
Ironically, a friend of mine who lives several states away, was pregnant with her second child. Some concerns were noted during her ultrasounds, and so she opted for the testing, and it was determined that her child, a boy, had Trisomy 21 (aka Down syndrome). She knew his diagnosis when she was just barely 4 months pregnant. She was devastated. It is a long story to describe what they went through. I will try to tell you in the words she used to tell me................... she just didn't think she could do it. Her heart ached. We spent countless hours on the phone for weeks and months trying to work through their choices, and their ultimate choice.
Let me tell you what she didn't do. She did not have an abortion, even though she could have, and many women do. In fact, 95% of women who receive an in utero diagnosis of a baby with Ds, do abort. 95%. My friend, who loves Jesus and who loved that baby, contemplated but chose against abortion. She deeply wanted to WANT her son, but she was so afraid of him. Afraid of the life, the challenges, the fear of loss, the fear of her inadequacy. She thought she wasn't good enough. She and her husband painfully and laborously sought out an adoption family. I cannot even begin to describe the drama that ensued. Their families went nuts....they were outcast, attacked, lashed out against.....it was awful! The things she endured would have literally killed me. And then there was me........I was now the mother of a beautiful bundle with Ds, and I was encouraging my friend and supporting her in her unpopular decision. She couldn't believe, of all people, that I was the one accepting her. It didn't make sense, and maybe it doesn't make sense, but I just love her. And I love that baby that I never met.
Soon, Luke was born. He was premature, small and required to be in the NICU for 5 weeks. He had heart problems, medications, and on and on. My friend and her husband actually brought him home for a few weeks. They tried with all their hearts and for whatever reason, the task was too daunting, too painful, and just too much. They ached and prayed and begged and prayed and grieved and prayed and prayed and prayed. They suffered and were tormented. They gave Luke up for adoption. They personally chose a family that already had a few children with Ds, in the midwest. A large happy, loving, sweet and tender family who longed for another sweet baby with Down syndrome.
Luke is 1 year and 3 months now. His birth mother, my dear friend, is grieving and mourning today as if her wound is fresh, the cut is deep, and the infection has spread. She hurts. She hurts because she thinks she wasn't strong enough. She hurts because she wonders what kind of person she is for giving him away. Could you leave her words of love here? Could you tell her that she is amazing because she did not abort him, when that might have been the easier route that might have saved her reputation and spared her extended family? Could you encourage her and love her because she tried. Could you praise her and show her grace and love because she took the time to seek out a very tender and special family, instead of letting an agency take all of the reponsibility? Could you remind her that God has used her as part of His plan and that Luke is fulfilling a plan and purpose too? Could you lift her up and tell her how amazingly selfless she was for blessing another family with a sweet miracle from God?
She needs to know that I am not the only one who thinks she is sooooooooo cool and incredibly amazing!!! She does not read my blog. I will take your comments and email them to her separately. I purposely have not shared my blog with her because I do not want to rub my little Ds angel in her face. It would hurt her in this fragile state she is in.
Adoption is a beautiful, incredible and selfless decision, on both parts. So many people cannot have children, but long to be parents. Some people have the heart to rescue a child or children who have been abondoned or abused. Some people, like this family, specifically wanted another child with Ds because they have hearts for the Lord, and God himself, desgined them to LOVE, desire and long for another. Without my friend, their dream might never have been fulfilled.
Your comments will be cherished!
7 hours ago