One of the first things I heard that day at work was that we would soon be getting a very special little boy on our unit. The charge nurse told me that this little boy – who was scheduled to be delivered via C-section later that day – had a very rare chromosomal syndrome, one which would most likely leave him with moderate to severe mental retardation (yes, that is the medical term) and other physical anomalies.
The charge nurse told me that she hadn’t seen a child with this condition in 17 years, and so I figured that I should learn about this child while I had the chance.
The first thing I noticed about this baby was his beautiful blond hair. Yes, I noticed the outward signs of his condition, signs which marked him as different, but my first thought was “Look at that hair – he’s a darling little boy.”
Later that evening the parent’s came to see him, Mom in her hospital bed (pushed by her nurse), and Dad walking close behind. Mom was still recovering from her C-section, but her whole attention was focused on her child… she was absolutely enchanted. Her first words when she saw him were “Oh… he’s so beautiful!” Suddenly she turned to me and asked if I would take some pictures with her cell phone; of course I happily obliged. Mom and Dad each held one of their son’s feet in his isolette and I snapped away.
These parents understood and saw their son’s problems, and they loved him all the more. True parent-child love, right there 🙂