One year ago tonight, I was sobbing my heart out.
Because I had just learned that our unborn baby daughter had Down syndrome.
If only I had known that one year later we would be working double time and paying extra and praying fervently for the high privilege of bringing another precious little girl with Down syndrome into our family.
Tonight’s post was written for those of you who could possibly have even one more baby.
It has been on my heart to make a very specific appeal to you.
Ever since we found out about Verity’s extra chromosome, I have wondered who would be the next mother in our circle of friends to be blessed with a baby with Down syndrome. Did you know that 80% of babies with Down syndrome are born to mothers UNDER the age of 35?
Maybe because I was unprepared to hear our news, I’ve thought for a long time about writing this. I hope my bluntness is not offensive to anyone. And I know that some of you don’t really need this. But some of you just might.
In a way, if you are pro-life, every time you choose to do what married people do to make babies, you are choosing to receive a child with Down syndrome. I think it would have helped me to really picture that and get to the point of embracing it long before Verity came along. I could have celebrated the child God was sending right from the get-go instead of grieving some nonexistent child I had in my head.
Because if I had known the kind of joy that comes with having a Verity, I would have jumped up and down with glee in my room that night instead of crying until I felt like I was turning inside out.
At times I still feel like some folks don’t REALLY believe that. They REALLY think that the hardness outweighs the joy.
As you watch, please picture more than 90% of these lives being snuffed out because their parents were told that their existence is a tragedy, and that their life would be senseless suffering. Do these children look like joyless burdens?
If even one of you mothers sees this, and is more prepared when you have your ultrasound and hear “Down syndrome,” or when you look into your baby’s eyes after the birth and see that almond shape, and your heart leaps with excitement that you were chosen for this LOVE adventure, instead of free-falling through scary and grief-stricken space, I will be profoundly thankful.