Sunday, May 6, 2012

How Special They Really Are

What is a special need? Most people think "down syndrome". They don't realize that in other countries, people with just a slight difference are considered special needs.
Sam has amniotic banding on his fingers, so his fingers look different. When I did some research, I realized that it's more common than you probably think. 1 in 1,200 babies are born with it. Considering that there are millions and millions of people in the world, that's a lot of babies with amniotic band syndrome. And guess what? The ones born in America aren't put in an orphanage just because their fingers are different. They're just like everybody else. It's not a special need here.
Duncan has cerebal palsy. So he is in a special need orphanage. He uses a walker, and can move around just like everybody else, if only a little slower, and he may have a little trouble with stairs. Again, not a special need here.
 We already know how special the boys can be. They have changed my family forever (in a good way). 
Look at Estelle. In her country, HIV is a special need. (I'm still not seeing a special need.)Why is she in an institution? She can't help it that she has HIV. She doesn't get a chance at real education, a real boyfriend, anything. She should be in school, counting down the days til summer vacation, ordering her yearbooks, choosing classes for her first year in high school. Not worrying if her forever family will ever come for her. Not worrying that she will be thrown out on the street when she ages out, and being without the medicine she needs.
Steven, with fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), and HIV+. So he's in an orphanage. Instead of starting kindergarten. Instead of learning to read, and wiping boogers on girls during naptime (oh, wait, was that just my kindergarten class?), he's in an orphanage, waiting. (Special need? Maybe special medicine, but that's it.)
Keegan, with down syndrome. He's only a year old, and going to an institution if someone doesn't come for him  soon. He WILL be such a blessing to his family when they find him. Keegan is who people think of when you say "special needs." But really, he just needs a special family, who will love him just the way he is. I used to work with a woman who has down syndrome. I remember someone whispering to me the first time I worked with her, "That's S. She's special." This scared me, and I avoided her, (which I now regret.) I never would have thought that she would end up being so special to me, even two years after she quit working there.
Guess what? With the exception of FAS, my family knows someone who has every condition in this blog (or something close). These are successful, wonderful people. Parents, hard workers, business owners. Not what these countries think they are. 
These kids just need a chance. A chance to prove they're not just fragile little burdens on society. A chance to show everyone what they can do. A chance to make a difference. A chance to know God and everything He can do. A chance to show how special they really are.
Can you help give them their chance? Sam and Duncan, they have families on the way. They'll be home picking on their brothers and sisters and flirting and getting to start high school next year. But Estelle? Steven? They're still waiting. Waiting for their chance.
I'm not saying to go adopt them. Adoption isn't right for everybody. But you can donate. You can pray. Anything.  Please don't just say "Oh, I can't help" because you can help. God didn't leave us as orphans. He adopted us into His family. How can we sit back and let these orphans sit in orphanages, institutions, be thrown onto the street? We can't. We just can't, it's that simple.
John 14:18
I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.

1 comment:

  1. Once you meet someone with DS, and actually talk to them, get to know them, you realize just how special they are. A very good kind of special! You see the world in a different way by looking at it with them.