By Tom Quiner

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A family I love just gave birth to their fifth child.

They were caught by surprise when the doctor told them that Molly was special. She carries an extra chromosome, which has been dubbed the “Love Chromosome.”

Molly has Downs Syndrome.

I’m sure her parents are going through an emotional roller coaster right now. Most of us would not choose for our child to carry the Love Chromosome. There are extra health risks associated with a Downs child. There are additional demands made upon the parents of Downs children.

We live in a country that now considers human life to be disposable. No group is more disposed of than Downs children. Ninety-five percent of them are aborted before they ever make their mark on the world.

What can these kids possibly do, you may wonder? How they can affect the world?

They will never be president of the United States.

They will never be a senator.

They will never be a community organizer.

So what can they do? They can love. Boy, can they ever love.

Where some people are divisive, our sons and daughters, our brothers and sisters, who carry the Love Chromosome unite us through the power of love.

New parents anxiously ask doctors what percentile their baby is in for birthweight, for length, for head size.

We know where Downs babies are at when it comes to the “love scale.” They are in the 99th percentile. God sends us these lovely human beings as a gift, a gift that reveals what life is really all about: love.

We need Molly far more than she needs us.

Molly, welcome to a world in need of love, sweet love.

Will you extend your hand and help us?

 

5 Comments

  1. Joanne Pasquale on June 21, 2013 at 10:56 am

    Whilst I commend your genuine feelings and understand you are expressing a love for this gorgeous new baby please don’t mistake having Down Syndrome as an excuse for patronising people.

    I am a mother of child WITH Down’s. He is NOT ‘a Down’s Child’ he HAS the extra chromosome. There is a huge difference.

    Yes, he is loving. As are my other two children. He is sweet – as our my other two. He can also be cheeky, annoying, naughty, funny, scary, silly, affectionate, moody… Do you see?

    He isn’t just a bundle of love.

    Please do not take this as a rant that you have said anything bad as I can feel the love coming through. But also please remember the parents do not necessarily need to be told that this child is all about love and sweetness and saying she carries ‘the love chromosome’ is, in my opinion, belittling what can be a big issue to deal with. It is a hard road to travel. Don’t underestimate that for them at this early stage.

    What I needed when my Son was born – and I found out he had DS when I was just 16 weeks pregnant – was time, support and understanding. They need to accept what is now a different child to who they were expecting. They will need to grieve for the life that is now not going to be. To celebrate the arrival of a new baby still.

    These are just my thoughts. I am only replying to this as I know I wish those who cared about me knew how better to react and ‘to be’ when our Son was born. Sometimes it’s hard to be honest, but hope you take it in an outstretched shake of the hand. Thank you.

    And please, give my utmost congratulations to the parents and wish them all a happy life together.

    • quinersdiner on June 21, 2013 at 11:19 am

      I’m missing something here. I’m not sure where I talked down to anyone with a child WITH Downs. I clearly acknowledged the challenge:

      “There are extra health risks associated with a Downs child. There are additional demands made upon the parents of Downs children.”

      I know, as I have witnessed it first hand with my nephew and my friend’s daughter.

      The thrust of this piece was not intended to “patronize” anyone in this situation, the intent was to suggest that the life of a child with Downs is utterly priceless, that their lives have the same dignity as anyone else’s, and that it is an abomination that most are aborted because they are imperfect in the eyes of the world.

      Thanks for weighing in with your perspective, and God bless you and your family.

  2. Karen Quiner on June 21, 2013 at 11:28 am

    Although I appreciate the perspective of one who has been there, I think it is unfair to accuse Tom of being patronizing.

    He is not talking down to anyone, he is expressing love for this beautiful child of God.

    Tom’s post is not directed towards the parents of the child with the extra chromosome, but to the minions who think these children should be aborted because they are not “perfect.”

    We didn’t send this post to the new parents. We simply expressed our love for them and their child and offered them our prayers and support.

    We do know that there are extra challenges, big ones that this family faces. We have a nephew with an extra chromosome, and know several other people with DS. Our nephew is stubborn, and oftentimes frustrating, but he is doing wonderful work in the world because he knows how to love with a bigger heart than most “normal” people do. Danny’s life is valuable and has purpose.

    (Please note the quote marks around the words “perfect” and “normal”.)

    And also, the point is not that your child with DS is better than your other children, or that you are MORE blessed by him than your other children, but that he is a blessing and just as valuable.

  3. Karen Quiner on June 21, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    Joanne,

    What is your point? It looks to me like you are looking for an argument. It simply a matter of semantics.

    I am sorry you offend so easily. Woe to the people who tried to support you when you needed it. I bet no one got it right.

    Try assuming the best from people. Life is a lot easier, and happier.

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