But some children are born special; differently, far from the expectations of their parents sometime. They are the children with special needs – children with physical/mental disabilities, terminal/chronic diseases. They came to our world with hearing impaired, ADHD, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Cystic Fibrosis, Autism, Asthma to name a few.
At the beginning, most families with these special needs children felt as though they had been single-out for punishment for the wrongs that the mankind had committed but fortunately many learned to accept and love their children for who they are along the way. Many go on to be amazed by the qualities of these children.
I have two very beautiful and lovable children. Both of them have sensitive airways. Their paediatrician says that they have 80% chance of developing asthma.
Leonitus, my son, had his first episode of Bronchiolitis when he was 2 months old and subsequently, he had so many recurrences that I had decided not to keep track. (His doc just reminded me, it was his sixth, last month.) He is sick practically every other month and he has been on daily medication of Singulair and Ventolin for the last 5 months but without much success to keep him away from bouts of respiratory infections.
When modern medication failed to safeguard Leonitus’s health, I became very anxious, trying all sorts of alternatives like TCM, buying all types of gadgets in the market that boasted their effectiveness in lowering respiratory-related allergies.
But even with our $3000 vacuum cleaner and an expensive humidifier, nothing much had change with the health of our two kids, in particular, Leonitus. This was the period of time, I felt very useless, defeated, deflated. I was directionless. There were many questions circulating in my head. ‘What is wrong?’ ‘Why can't he get better?’ 'Is it my fault?' ‘Why him?’ ‘Why me?’
But there had never been an answer.
For both my pregnancies, I have had neonatal screenings during the first trimester for fetal anomalies, in particular Down Syndrome. I was very sure that if the result had indicated any subnormalities, I would terminate my pregnancy and not consider bring the child to the world. I had recommended this screening to many preggy friends because I thought I was doing something right, but actually I was putting them up for a chance of moral dilemma. I was wrong, very wrong.
My paradigm completely shifted when I chanced upon the blog of Kelle Hampton, a mom who blog about her struggle, her acceptance and her celebration of life of her daughter, Nella, an extremely sweet little girl who has Down Syndrome.
Pictures from Kelle Hampton's blog - Enjoying the Small Things
I love Kelle Hampton's blog, because I find myself drawing strength from it. It had taught me to enjoy my children for who they are, in sickness or in health. More often than not, when we are micro-scrutinising our child's health issue, we forgot to take a step back and see beyond his/her problem, there are lots of potentials awaiting our discovery.
As of last month, Leonitus and Laetitia had both been 'upgraded' to a steroid-based inhaler and I have prepared myself for one, if not two, asthmatic kid in the future. However, nothing will change the way I am going to love them and I will raise them no differently from any healthy children.
This post is dedicated to all the mothers in the world who has never given up on their less than perfect children. Happy Mother's Day!
And special thanks to Kelle Hampton.