We do love to travel and visit family. I think that is what was so special about this holiday. The kids woke up in their own beds, they relaxed, they didn't encounter germs with an over-tired, over-sugared system. The girls sang in the choir on Christmas Eve and we celebrated the New Year outside with our neighbors. It was delightful.
Did you know the traditional understanding of the story of Saint Joseph's reaction to the Incarnation was that he believed Mary was telling the truth, but was terrified to act as a caretaker for the Messiah? Yeah, me neither. So, when the angel says "Do not be afraid to take Mary as a wife." It's a message of support, of "You were chosen too, Joseph, you can do it!"
The reason this struck me so profoundly was because of the high rate of termination that babies with disabilities face. Most parents who terminate are ending a pregnancy they were ready to accept until the testing came back with a Diagnosis. I think most of these parents want what is best for their children and many are led to believe death is better than a life of pain. I wish they all had a dream like Joseph to remind them that they don't have to be afraid.
It also struck me because I have always rejected the comments about me having to be extra special to have been given a child with Down syndrome. I always see my kids as people that I needed because they call to be more than I was. And they are! But when I read about Saint Joseph, I realized that God did choose me, not just as a call forward to make better use of my talents, but also because He is trusting me to rise to the challenge. He picked me. Whoa.
We are still going to get in with the endocrinologist, just because she does have Ds, my thyroid is wonky, and hers isn't acting exactly normal. I'm happy to add a specialist even though it is trying to fit one more thing into an already crammed schedule. I don't want to have to wait if things take a turn down the road.
|Best we could do with an iPhone and low lighting|
|Mae walked about the church prior to mass and promptly fell asleep during mass. It was perfection.|
|Mae meets Baby Jesus, whom she promptly "pat-pat-pats" in an attempt to burp him. Only, that's his knee.|
|Charlotte's turn with Mae|
|A hopeful Christmas Eve prayer|
|A Desperate Christmas Eve prayer by a boy who spent the day before in his room after a major offense.|
|Best family photo in YEARS|
|Santa comes through in the clutch.|
|Mae's own personal baby to pat-pat-pat.|