October is Down syndrome awareness month. Obviously people with Down syndrome (two in particular) are near and dear to my heart. Baby Girl and Super-T have that extra chromosome that makes them uniquely special. Fortunately, their birth country has the resources and compassion to provide excellent medical and educational care for individuals with Down syndrome. In many countries children with Down syndrome are placed in mental institutions, not provided with adequate medical care or nutrition, and sometimes outright abused.
Over at Zero the Zeros there is a post that grabbed my attention. It is called "Brokenhearted." Go check it out for yourself. This is unimaginable, but it is real.
Meanwhile today on Facebook this lovely article from 2008 has been circulating: http://cnsnews.com/news/article/football-legend-would-pick-his-down-syndrome-son-over-normal-child
What is the difference between Gene Stallings' son Johnny and the children whose pictures are in Brokenhearted? Think about it. I think one major difference is the love of a parent. Even Super-T, who had great care and people who loved him, blossomed once he was in his own family. When I saw the changes in him I was astonished. To think that a child who had good medical care and love and a good school and opportunities to go on outings and consistent care and travel and birthday parties and Christmas presents and love (almost all of which are completely unknown to most orphans with Down syndrome around the world), to think that Super-T blossomed and thrived after joining his very own forever family, imagine, just imagine, what it would do for these little malnourished unloved children. Come to think of it, you don't have to imagine. You can see for yourself. Here is Katie's adoption story. http://theblessingofverity.com/2012/10/the-story-of-katies-adoption/ Katie was 9 1/2 years old and weighed 10 pounds 9 ounces when her mother brought her home last November. See what eleven months with a family who loves her has done for this precious little one.
If you are interested in helping orphans, Katie's mom has a post on what you can do to help.
Or you can support one of the many families or children on Reece's Rainbow, a wonderful ministry that advocates for orphans with Down syndrome and other special needs. Also Buddy Walks for Down syndrome awareness are happening all over the country this month. Join one and see what fun we have!
My own precious waiting sweetheart with an extra chromosome is walking and loves books according to a family who visited her this week. Although her country won't let me show her face, I can show you her plump little arms and adorable shoes. I can hardly wait to see how she will blossom even more when she is finally home with a sister and brothers and mommy of her own.