Down syndrome

Today while at Fred Meyer I walked by a little girl in a cart and her father. I thought that maybe she had Down syndrome- but couldn’t be 100% sure. He passed by our cart where the little girl squealed in delight at Abby. She just wanted to touch her and be close to her. I said hello and, “this is Abby. Abby has Down syndrome.” The father quickly chimed in, “This is Beth- she has Down syndrome, too.” We spoke for a minute and then I just asked him how things have been. Beth is three. For the first month of her life they were really worried about a large hole at the bottom of her heart. The father looked at me and said, “But God filled the hole in her heart.” Before they went in for open heart surgery, they did another echocardiogram. Beth had an aneurysm- the kind that would have been fatal if it were in your brain- and it had filled the hole. She’s been healthy ever since. This little girl was BEAUTIFUL. She knew Abby. It was amazing to watch these two little girls with these two amazing spirits really recognize each other.

After we finished talking I went out to my car and cried. Heavenly Father knew I needed to see that today. He needed me to see how much He is a part of Abby’s life. That there is real meaning for her presence in our family and in this world. You cannot talk about children with Down syndrome and not think about God. They are like the most amazing sunsets we used to have in Utah. You couldn’t look at the sky and not feel like there was a God. Abby is a miracle. She’s as close as you can get to the literal translation of “bundle of joy.”

I remember telling Lance after Casey was diagnosed that I felt like there was a hole in my heart. I was worried that the pain I felt, the loss, would never ever go away. I prayed a lot. So did many of you. Casey is just as much a joy and a miracle as Abby, though sometimes it’s a little harder to see- kind of like the stars at night. You know they are always there-but sometimes it’s too cloudy to see. But then, when you get away from the city, from the smog, on a clear night the sky is breathtaking. It’s the same with Casey. Every day I get a glimpse of the real him. Like his autism clears out for a moment, and I can just see him. It’s breathtaking.

So five and a half years later I look at all of my children and my heart fills full. When I stop to look, to really see all that I have, I know I’m the richest person in the world. I’ve been so remarkably blessed. I see that now. Why?

because God filled the hole in my heart.

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