Friday, March 27, 2009

My little corner of Holland



I planted these tulips when I was pregnant with Goldie, they bloomed about a month after she was born. I would go stand by the road just to look at them because it was like a sign that everything was going to be ok.

I mentioned in my last post that Goldie's due date happened to fall on World Down Syndrome Day. Another neat little tidbit is that I read The Memory Keeper's Daughter while I was pregnant with her. If you've read it you'll know that it takes place in Pittsburgh, which is less than an hour away from my house.

I'm still, uh, experiencing, Goldie's birthday. So, I keep thinking back over the years to events that have taken on new meaning. There is one that sticks out, a lot. Many Thanksgivings ago, when I was the mother of one maybe two little girls, the topic of selective reduction came up. (This was around the time of the first septuplets and not exactly appropriate convo with small kids around) One of our family members thought this was a good idea because it would be too hard for a child to go through life with Cerebral Palsy. Then, this person said that if they knew their child would have Down syndrome or anything like that they would terminate the pregnancy. That was when I spoke up and said "I don't think people with Down syndrome are unhappy. I think they live good lives and we are the ones who think they are missing out on something. We are the ones with the problem, not them." That ended the conversation. I will always feel proud that I defended my daughter before she was conceived, but disgusted that I had to. Goldie has changed that family member's thinking, for the most part. But, I find myself unable to forget that if it was up to that person, she may not be here. I've been feeling guilty that I'm unable to forgive this ignorant comment. I admit that I'm not always nice to the person who said it. On some level, I wonder if I blame them for Goldie having DS. Most days though, I like to believe Goldie heard me on that Thanksgiving and said "Her, I want her for my Mama."

11 comments:

SunflowerMom said...

"Her, I want her for my Mama." yes she did!!!

Jennifer said...

I also find myself holding weird grudges against anyone who says anything negative about down syndrome unless they have a child with DS. I can't help myself, but I just try to tell myself that they don't know any better and it's up to me to show them they're wrong. It cuts right to the heart when people make comments, doesn't it?

Wendy P said...

Well now I'm crying. I was thinking that right then is when you were picked, too. Kira's birthday is so bittersweet for me. She surprised us with her something extra when she got here. So many conflicting emotions those first few days. Thank you for sharing your beautiful piece of Holland.

Beverly said...

I love, love that last line too! So sweet! For the most part I feel like I have let go of bad things people have said, but they creep back into my head at times!

Linda said...

Oh, I love the line about Goldie picking you for her mama! How sweet! After we got our prenatal diagnosis one of my older son's friend's moms (did you follow that) told me that we should terminate because we were too old to deal with a child with special needs. I'm still upset with her. I am working on forgiveness but it's difficult.

Lisa said...

What a beautiful post.

I, too, read The Memory Keeper's Daughter when I was pregnant with Finn (and we didn't find out he had Ds until after he was born).

I, too, find myself holding small grudges against friends and acquaintances who have said in the past that they would terminate a pregnancy if they found out they were carrying a child with special needs.

Beth said...

I have no doubt that Hannah chose us. I know God was watching me grow up with lots of diverse exposure. I know He was preparing for Hannah's arrival generations before she was conceived. I know He was eavesdropping on our late night discussions about adopting a child with special needs.

Hannah really wanted to be born, and really wanted to live. Through all the challenges, it's just amazing that our girls are here, full of life!

I love your tulips!

Karen said...

I absolutely love that you planted a garden of tulips in honor of Goldie. LOVE it.

Becca said...

That totally brought tears to my eyes. Beautiful sentiment, and I agree so much that those of us experiencing our beautiful children know what a full, happy life they can have. What a bummer of a Thanksgiving dinner conversation, though. I hope that family member truly understands now.

Monica said...

This really is a beautiful post~

And I totally love your tulips!!!

Ruby's Mom said...

That's so neat that you planted tulips and they are just beautiful as was your post.