Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Somehow, it always comes back to gratitude...

February 11, blogger Cassy Fiano shared much of another anonymous blogger’s opinion in the on-line article, “Is there a wrong answer to terminating a baby with Down syndrome?

The anonymous blogger began:  I was so late in pregnancy, there seemed not to be time to meet with a genetic counselor so I did my own research on Down syndrome. I concluded it was a grey diagnosis where best case was hard and worst case terrible. I could envision handling the early years, but not the long term.

She goes on to explain how, though she chose to terminate this pregnancy, she will always think of and love her son with T21. In fact she says, I loved him just as much as the kids I have living here with me today, and how she is a better mother now to her other children from this experience. Also, according to her blog: The parents (of children with Down syndrome) have suffered. The kids have suffered too. I didn’t want that future for my son or for my family.

As for me…wow.

After I moved through the sick feeling in my stomach, (Exactly how far into this pregnancy was she?) beyond my overwhelming impression of hypocrisy (How does this action demonstrate love in any way?) into indignation that all children with Down syndrome and their parents must “suffer” greatly, (Oh, please…I do not believe that Marcus has suffered or suffers now, particularly in any way that this woman rationalized for the sake of her own fear) then, finally, my emotional rollercoaster turned to gratitude.

You see today I have been working on scheduling and editing future posts for this blog. Posts written by those folks who work with the students of the Madonna School and the Workshop.  Posts that remind me that here in Omaha, young people with disabilities have a place where they are not merely cared for but pushed to reach their potential.

Where adulthood is not a future to be feared, but a time of continued growth and opportunity.

Not every community is blessed with an environment of Christian Love as well as professional dedication to teaching like the Madonna School. 

Do we, families and those who support children with developmental disabilities, have challenges? Yes.  Have there been scary times. Yup. Are there fears about the future, uh, yeah. 

However, can any parent honestly say they don’t have concerns about their child’s future? About each child’s unique set of challenges? I doubt it.

Given the tools: a safe environment, programs that emphasize potential, and a patient and well trained staff - children, teens and adults with disabilities are able to thrive in our community.

You are in for a treat. Upcoming blogs include sharing the goals, achievements, and joys of those who are part of the Madonna programs.  Please, share the posts that move you, spread the word about the good things the Madonna School and Workshop does every day.

And, of course, mark your calendar to Celebrate on August 24th. Where you too will be Working Wonders with the Madonna School and Workshop.  

                                                                                                                            Mardra Sikora ©










  1. Wow is right. I cannot imagine having such a twisted look on having a child with disabilities. I actually feel sorry for this lady who wrote the blog because she has no idea what she missed out on. We have had struggles, yes, but I couldn't imagine life without my son Lane.

    1. Right! And think of this, how many other people can't imagine life without Lane? Our children bring joy and perspective to more than just their mothers.


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