"As long as its healthy," I heard in the years before I became a mother and though I wasn't writing, I was still thinking. Words flow and land on the listener and often times, we are not even aware of their effect on others. We should be though, not in a hyper vigilant, politically correct sort of way, but a place of empathy, eyes and heart open to the needs and lives of others. Spilling catch phrases comes easily, but words can be thorns. For those that didn't or don't or will not have a healthy baby, the sting comes more quickly.
Maybe healthy is just a medical term, a body with properly working organs and a mind that is assembled correctly. Healthy. I wanted that too. Each time I was pregnant and held those four babies in my arms, my heart was struck with fear that they maybe weren't healthy. An odd thought for someone who opted out of prenatal testing, though back then I thought if there were something "bad," I don't want to know. Truthfully, I didn't trust myself.
When Amos was born, the doctor pointed out a few medical issues and I was unscathed. Surgeries would be needed later, but that's life, I thought and this baby seemed quite perfect. He was and is perfect, though it's unlikely he would fall in the "healthy" category. No, special needs toss you out of the running and I wish I had known that it really wasn't all that important. The gift of a child extends far beyond the parameters of healthy perfection and I'm reminded that real love has no boundaries.