Domestic Bliss Report

Motherhood is hard work. If we don't stick together, we'll all fall apart.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

There's a first time for everything.

I saw something for the first time yesterday. One of the moms watching her son in dance class was holding and feeding her youngest son, who has a cleft lip and palate.
I've never seen one in real life before, just pictures. My knowledge of the condition is summed up thusly: There are degrees of it, it's tough or impossible to breastfeed directly, prosthetic nipples are expensive, and it's correctable with surgery.
This mother and I struck up a conversation. The little guy is four months old and it's been tough for her, having to pump every three hours for him (I had suspected it wasn't formula in the bottle). I imagined how expensive it would be if she were buying formula too, and that little guy could probably use every health advantage he could get.
He smiled at me from his stroller, and Madeleine whispered to me, "That baby is cute." She did repeat that to his mother.

This was in contrast to the chilling conversation I had this weekend. It was a political discussion and I admitted there was just no way I could vote for Obama. The fact that he voted against the Born Alive Infant Protection Act sickens me, regardless of any other stance he takes on any issue. (I'm pretty much a single-issue voter. So sue me.) After I explained the BAIPA, he shook his head. His stance boiled down to this: Those children of botched abortions probably have other medical issues because of that and would be better off dying. Better to die than to "drag all of us down."
I couldn't believe what I heard. I was horrified. I've known this person his whole life--or so I thought. I would have thought with his knowledge of Nazism he could recognize the similarity. No, he's not a child of a Holocaust survivor, but World War II was a not-uncommon topic of conversation at the dinner table. He repeated "diminished mental capacity" like that's all it should take. Someone with "diminished mental capacity" would "drag all of us down," and thus we should spare ourselves from that person seeing the light of day. Eugenics, anyone? I couldn't believe the outright evil I was looking in the eye. I thought of Trig Palin in this, though neither of us mentioned him.
I pointed out as gently as I could what he sounded like and that it's a very slippery slope from "optional" to "recommended" to "obligatory." I don't know if that sunk in.

Please pray for this individual. He is near and dear to me so please don't call him names, but help him to find God's mercy.

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At 3:33 PM, Blogger Binarypc said...

Did you know....

There is free help for kids with cleft palettes? If you go to you can see what they do. I have heard from multiple people about how they are actually a charity of note, because so much of the money that comes in actually goes to helping the kids and the doctors volunteer their time and skill to help change these kids lives.

At 4:33 PM, Blogger Heather said...

I'm not surprised there's free help. The little guy I met yesterday had his first appt. with a plastic surgeon today. It was an evaluation; they knew he was going to need more than one and it was time to start setting the timetable.

I'll be seeing them pretty regularly as our sons are in class together. I'll keep you posted on his progress. :)

At 11:05 AM, Blogger THE MOM WITH BROWNIES said...

My god. I just read Obama's stance and I'm so sick. Thank you for bringing this to light.

At 1:09 PM, Blogger Kasia said...

I had a conversation on the street with a guy doing voter registration who was also an Obama supporter. He asked me if I was a registered voter: I said yes. He asked, almost hesitantly, "Obama?" I said no. He shook his head, and started to explain to me why I should vote for Obama.

I listened for a minute, took a deep breath, and said, "Yes, and he also voted against the Born Alive Infant Protection Act when he was in the Illinois Senate." The man had no idea what I was talking about. He even asked me how a baby could even survive an abortion. It went on in that vein, and we parted on very amicable terms but with the clear understanding that we were not going to vote the same way.

I think all you can do is tell the truth gently and plainly, and pray. And I will certainly pray for the person you mentioned.

On a less-unrelated-than-you-might-think note, thank you for the comment/smackdown of JW! It showed up in Canuck's RSS feeder and he called me at work to tell me to go read it. We both loooooved it.

Re: JW, I could tell you some things, but every time I start writing them I include something that would necessitate having to go to Confession, so I'll hold off for now...


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