Thursday, April 01, 2010


If you don't know Kellie over at Enjoying the Small Things, you are missin' something good. For one thing, she is an amazing photographer, and heavily peppers her posts with lovely photos. A few weeks ago, the Lord surprised her with a baby daughter, Nella, who has Down's Syndrome. Her journey of discovery with her daughter is really worth reading.

In the post I linked to above, Kellie talks about Perfection. When her pediatrician gave her the news about Nella's being special, she said to her, "She's beautiful...and perfect."

Here is what Kellie says:

" ....and I wonder what it is about different that makes us think that it's not perfect? Why is it that we set the bar higher and higher and expect ourselves, our children to be flawless? What is it we strive for and once we achieve it--this perfection--what have we achieved? It's never enough. Even the razor I used in the shower this morning tries to outdo itself with now six
blades layered to give a more perfect shave because apparently the five-bladed prior model didn't quite master the hairless perfection we're attempting to achieve."

I think about my son, Don Quixote, who has Asperger's Syndrome. He has been wired differently in his brain from us normal NT (neurologically typical) people.
(I do like the term "neurologically typical" instead of "normal.")

For awhile, I thought that maybe Don's Asperger's came from being immunized, a popular theory. But, one day I read an article in a homeschooling magazine that featured special needs children. For each "special need," there was an article, and a sidebar from the editor listing symptoms, so that you could get your child screened if need be. Looking at the list of symptoms of Asperger's, I saw that Don fit them perfectly, all the way down the list. What is more important to me, however, is that I could divide the list in two, and put my name at the top of one, and Charming's at the top of the other. In God's amazing creativity, he made a DNA combo, a "perfect storm" if you will, that became Don.

Don, who, when he reads something about a "cure" for Asperger's, says, "I don't need a cure, I'm not broken!" and, upon further discussion, says, I wouldn't want a "cure," anyway. Take away the Asperger's, and I wouldn't know who I was."

Wow. Wowowowowowowow.

I think about my brother Scotty, who was born with an incurable blood disease. Throughout his 8 1/2 years, he was poked and prodded, tested and guinea-pigged more that most of us will ever be. My mother told him one time, "I am so sorry that you have to go through this." He replied, "that's okay, Mom, this is my life. This is all I know."

And now our little granddaughter Nettie. She has challenges that we don't even know about yet. God has done a mighty work in that little one, but, for right now, she's not completely healed.

But, that doesn't mean that she's not perfect.

Of course, we live in a fallen world, and "things" happen. Nettie was oxygen-deprived near birth. Myriad other things can happen that can make us not-normal. But if I'm reading my Bible correctly, God doesn't make anything that is not perfect. Everything He made, "He saw that it was good." We have all seen a tree that has grown around something foreign and is twisted in a funny way. Or a kitten with an extra leg. Or [on and on and on...] Whether the circumstances happen before birth or after, just because we aren't flawless doesn't mean we're not perfect.

We need to look at ourselves and those around us like God looks at us. Seeing through God-eyes would be so enlightening, wouldn't it? How much less would we fuss about things that aren't of any importance at all, in the grand scheme of things?

Thank you, Don, and thank you, Nettie, for teaching us about God.

Finally, another quote from Kellie:

"The concept of "perfect" is not flawless or four-point-oh. It's happiness. Happiness with all of its messiness and not-quite-there-ness. It's knowing that time is short, and the moments we choose to fill our cup with should be purposeful and colorful. And that's perfection."

Edited to add: After discussing these thoughts with Charming, he said something: God's plan is perfect. It is not perfection.

Food for thought.

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