Last week, I read a post by Erin about a "God wink" she experienced, a moment that God ordained to show her she's not alone and it's going to be okay. I read her post with a heavy heart. I was feeling down about Down syndrome and sinking into a giant pity party.
Later that day, I took the kidlets to a McDonalds with a playland. Before we left, I struggled to put Eon's SMOs (ankle braces) and shoes on as he squirmed and kicked. Once there, I got him a cup of water (unmeasured) and tried to guess how much thickener to mix it with to prevent aspiration. I've learned that he does better eating his cheeseburger if I just offer it to him to take bites from, versus cutting it up. It takes longer, though, so the other kids ran off to play.
As we sat there, I looked around at the other families. Then I saw her. She was about 2 1/2, but I'm purely guessing at that because she was tiny. She had soft blond hair and cute little glasses. Her mom was holding her rather awkwardly and feeding her lunch...a jar of stage 2 baby food. It was obvious that she had cerebral palsy and her limitations were significant. Her hair was rubbed off on the back of her head like a baby's from lying or semi-sitting in a stroller.
I pondered the scene for awhile. I have no doubt that the mom delights in her daughter every bit as much as I delight in Eon. Her three older siblings obviously adored her, too. Yet, I couldn't help but realize that this mom has significantly more work, appointments, and uncertainty in her life with her daughter, than I do with Eon. At this point, Eon was climbing through the playland with Ellie close on his heels. He was shrieking with laughter as he tried to stay out of her reach. The little girl was smiling, too, as her siblings ran up to kiss and tickle her and include her in their play.
Suddenly, my perspective was changed. I felt grateful. Not because I don't have that woman's life, but because I get to have mine...the one that was chosen for me.
On the way home, I realized that God had winked at me, too.