Since Otto was a little boy, we would stop every morning after we dropped his big sisters off to school at our local coffee shop to visit with the 'Gentlemen' as Otto called the group of older men who meet every morning at the coffee shop at 9am to have coffee and share years of friendship ~of growing up, having families and living in our small community. Otto would sit with the men and they just adored him. During the time of my pregnancy with Emma Sage, this group of men and I would talk about the possibility of her having Down syndrome. This group of older men were very wise and we still enjoy our visits, but these days it is on Saturdays, since Otto is at school weekdays at 9am and his little baby sister now sits at the table with the 'Gentlemen' and chats. At one of our morning visits, Jon, one of the younger of the men and still gainfully employed and not retired [worked the night shift and would visit with the guys before heading home to bed] gave me a book. I shared books recommended by this group through the years and figured this was just the same. The beginning of the book, I assumed Jon recommended it because it was about the Catholic Church and a Pope, reflecting on my childhood religious upbringing, but when I came upon the following passage, I realized the main reason Jon gave me this book was about my precious baby-to-be growing deep within my womb.
The book is called *The Clowns of God* by Morris West.
In the book, a deposed pope has gone through many trials and tribulations and it is the time of the Second Coming. When he meets the Returned Christ, the former pope is afraid and unsure much like the apostles where when Christ first arose from death. This passage takes place in a mountain hideaway where children from a school for Down syndrome are among those present. The Returned Christ is speaking about one of these children as he holds her.
"I know what you are thinking. You need a sign. What better one could I give but to make this little one whole and new? I could do it; but I will not. I am the Lord and not a conjurer. I gave this mite a gift I denied to all of you--eternal innocence. To you she looks imperfect--but to me she is flawless, like the bud that dies unopened or the fledgling that falls from the nest to be devoured by ants. She will never offend me, as all of you have done. She will never pervert or destroy the work of my Father's hands. She is necessary to you. She will evoke the kindness that will keep you human. Her infirmity will prompt you to gratitude for your own good fortune..... More! She will remind you every day that I am who I am, that my ways are not yours, and that the smallest dust mite whirled in the darkest spaces does not fall out of my hand........ I have chosen you. You have not chosen me. This little one is my sign to you. Treasure her!"
I share this after spending the day yesterday with family and friends, celebrating the rebirth of the world....of the promise that was given to us on this day....
I treasure Emma Sage....just as a treasure all of my children and my life. They are a blessing......I did not choose them, God chose them for me,,,,,,,,and I am forever thankful.
I treasure you little girl....