I Named Her Shannon
She was our baby and no matter what her disabilities might have been, she belonged with us and her family where love could make a bigger difference
When Shannon was born, the hospital staff, both nurses and doctors, advised us to "just leave her here". It was 1972 and the idea that a baby born with DS could ever function normally, let alone contribute, was unheard of. We, of course, were horrified. She was our baby.
I often wonder all these years later what our lives would be like had we taken their advice. I wonder if I would think of her often or feel guilt or mourn her loss as though she had died.
I'm glad I don't have to wonder because we chose her. We chose to shout down the professionals who shook their heads and whispered behind my back at how immature I was and unprepared for what we were taking on. Yes, at 21 I was definitely immature and being an only child, I was totally unprepared for motherhood, let alone special motherhood.
But Shannon taught me so much more than I could ever teach her and she continues to enrich our lives and the lives of so many around her.
What God gave us was a challenge.
I like to think that we not only accepted the challenge but in accepting it, perhaps the hardest challenge of our lives, we became stronger, more loving, better parents to our other 3. And now as there is less life ahead and more in my rear view mirror, I can look back and wonder how life could ever have been without Shannon in it.
I Named Her Anyway
- I Named Her Anyway – heart for annie
I remember the day I decided not to love Annie. I didn't want my heart broken by a broken hearted baby growing wrongly in my womb. I named her that day anyway. A baby should have a name, I reasoned. That name defined the life of a baby I hadn't even