Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Some Thoughts on Baby Luke

It would feel odd to move on from the situation with baby Luke and not say anything. I could write a novel, but there's a lot that's just not my place to say. All I can speak about is my own experience. It's been such an emotionally-charged situation for the PWS community and others that I think the most important thing to do right now is to focus on finding baby Luke a new home. But even though I want to tell you about some other things (like Dean getting his orthotics today!), a few thoughts....

When Dean was born, we knew something was wrong. But he was my SON. I looked at how helpless he was and I knew that even though I was scared out of my mind, that I had NO clue what to do and didn't know how I was going to make it through, didn't know if he was going to make it, he was MY SON. That was all that mattered. I was even terrified by my own attachment to him, because I knew that whatever lie ahead, I was bonded by love for him and therefore had to take it all as it came. I did not feel like I even HAD a choice to do anything differently. I don't think I'm a hero for being a mom to a child with special needs. It was not a job title I was looking for, and honestly, I didn't want it. But I wanted Dean, *always.* Because of my bond to him, I was taken to Prader-Willi Land because that's where he needed me to be. Our relationship was and continues to be a cross-cultural experience of sorts, which is a weird thing not to understand the life of your own child. But as I told Dean, usually through tears, "you're stuck with me, buddy. I'm here for good." Bob and I pledged to do whatever was necessary to love this wonderful angel who was placed in our lives. We were honored to have him in our family. Still are. :)

I do believe that Luke's birth parents are hurting greatly. I do not understand their decision, I do not agree with it, and at times I have felt such anger and heartache that I almost felt sick, but it's not my decision. I DO know that they are hurting; anyone who makes a heart-wrenching decision continues to live with it for life. Even though they are looking for a new home for Luke, their journey with him doesn't end here. It's easy to remember to pray for little Luke as we hope for a new home for him. But please pray for Luke's birth parents, too. "Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle." (Plato)

Finally, I spoke with the social worker in charge of Luke's adoption and she said that once Luke has a family placed with him, she can let us all know of where donations can go to the help the family who adopts him. I'll keep you posted.

8 comments:

Kevin said...

Hi,
Could you flesh out what an open adoption would be in reality? Is that where the child can/shall visit the birth parents? I suppose that adoption scenarios where the birth parents allow adoption of a child so that the child can live a better life are more common than not. Usually it is saving them from poverty and that is great if a home can be found. I'm not going to judge.

Ali Foley Shenk said...

Open adoption, to my knowledge, means that there is open exchange between the birth and adopting families, and so they have visits to see how the kid is doing and just spend time together. This family originally wanted an open adoption and has since pretty much changed their minds. Money, as far as I know, was not an issue in this case.

Anonymous said...

This was a terrfically hard post to read and contemplate. Like you, Ali, I was committed to my son the moment I knew he was on his way to us. Life has been far harder than I ever dreamed since he was born, and in amny ways, far richer. I wish Luke's parents could know that their son, while in need of a lot of help, would give them the strength to make it through.

Kate said...

Ali, thanks for sharing your thoughts on this. It must be so hard for you. I am a parent of 3 children (none of who have special needs) and I felt so sick and angry when I read the post. I hope and pray this little fellow gets the loving family home he deserves. ON a lighter note, I loved the videos of Dean walking. Clever, clever boy.

Anonymous said...

Hey Ali,

Getting that email brought bunches of emotions up for me also. I am the mom of three adopted children, our youngest is a prader-willi baby (10 mos old)!

While we have an impossible time understanding other's motivation to give their child up for adoption, I am so thankful that it is an option. I our PWS baby's case, his birth parents could not accept him how he was. How tragic of a life would that have been for him? They wanted him until they found out about his disability. I am so thankful that they chose adoption for HIS sake. Yes, life with biological parents is better IF they want you just the way you are! We love our son and cherish him for who he is...our prayer is that baby Luke would find a loving family that will love him to peices!!

Take care,
Stacy

Ali Foley Shenk said...

Thanks for your comments, everyone!

Stacy, you have such a great perspective. :) I'm thankful for parents like you who step up and give these sweet, deserving ones a forever home. :)

Anonymous said...

The birth parents of Luke are SHALLOW. The mother is consumed with having the image of a perfect family, and baby Luke, being deemed as imperfect to her, was just a smudge in the picture she wiped away. She never even tried to take care of the baby herself, it went right to a nurse. The husband has no balls either to give strengh and encouragment to keep the baby, I bet he's more worried about his BMW. These people have money, they are working professionals right? They have another kid already, so Luke has a sibling he will never know and love, and I bet they will have more kids in the future too Luke will never know about...and I bet they all hope baby Luke becomes a distant memory to them so "they can move on." They asked for a closed adoption...not an open one. Shallow!

Anonymous said...

bless those who do not suffer from clinical suicidal depression or the lack of bonding. it's a blessing to have emotional stability and the ability to unconditionally love. i suppose, it's always easier to assume that people are shallow and that it's an easy decision. the truth always makes us have to look at ourselves and realize, there are things we do not want to face within ourselves. i happened upon this blog...i commend you for being nonjudgmental even if you don't understand. i suffered from severe depression and PPD. it's not a choice. to ask a parent why they do not love is the same as to ask someone who is gay why they are gay. who would choose such pain, agony and ridicule? i have two children so i can easily compare an experience of undying love so great it hurts and one where the love is simply not there though you feel in your entire being that it should be. shame on those who think they know what it means to walk in another's shoes and in their path. instead of spreading hatred, perhaps be grateful that you do not suffer the fate of those with bonding problems as it is one of the most painful experiences a parent can go through. btw, open adoption means simply that there can be contact, not that there will be..anything goes pretty much in how often or when the contact occurs.