Saturday, December 3, 2011

Our story...

So the journey begins.  In July of 2007 I rushed Andrea to the hospital in anticipation of our 2nd child being born.  We were blessed with a beautiful daughter in 2005, and now it was time for our first son to join our family. 

After some tense moments during the delivery, we finally saw our son for the first time.  He was perfect!  I was such a proud father and so excited to soon be holding my son for the first time.  That's when the doctor put his arm around me and in a quiet voice said, "Brady, we think your son has Down Syndrome."  I didn't know how to react or what to say, so I didn't say anything. 

I stood there in silence for a few moments and realized that I needed to share this with Andrea.  I wasn't sure what I was going to say.  After some time, I slowly walked over to Andrea's bedside.  I began to get choked up.  I leaned over and whispered in her ear that the doctors believe our son has Down Syndrome.  Her reaction surprised me.  She wasn't sad or surprised.  It was like she already knew and was very much at peace from the moment she found out.  It should not have surprised me that this would have been her reaction because Andrea is the most patient and kind person I know.

It didn't take very long for the reality of the situation to sink in.  This reality is very simple.  Nash has been among our familys biggest blessings.  He is the constant source of much joy and is constantly bringing this joy to all who he comes in contact with.  He teaches us unconditional love through his example.  We cannot imagine our lives without him in it!

Because of Nash, we have been able to meet some great people.  There is a natural connection to other family's who have children with Down Syndrome as well as the great people who volunteer and participate in the many local organizations and functions.  It was through one of these great family's that we were first introduced to Reece's Rainbow.  Reece's Rainbow is a website dedicated to raise funds as well as awareness for the adoption of orphans with Down Syndrome.  Read their story HERE.

I was unaware of the current situation of children with Down Syndrome in many foreign countries.  It is common practice that when a child is born with Down Syndrome, they are placed into an oprhanage.  This is where they stay typically for 5-6 years at which time they are moved to an institution.  Most children do not live more than a year once they are placed in an institution because of the harsh circumstances they face.

Reece's Rainbow is not an adoption agency, but more of a tool to help these children find their forever families.  One important fact I learned after researching Reece's Rainbow is this; there are many families currently ready and willing to adopt, but they simply don't have the funds to do so.  An international adoption has an average cost of $30,000+.  In fact, Reece's Rainbow has gone as far as saying that there are so many families that want to adopt these children that if the cost of adoption were taken care of, there wouldn't be a need for Reece's Rainbow because there would be no more children left to adopt! 

When I first read this, I was excited!  It seems like there can be something done about that!  That brings us to the purpose of our blog.  As a family, we may not be able to raise enough money for all 400+ children currently listed on Reece's Rainbow all at once, but we believe we can raise enough for 1 child.  If we can raise enough money for one child, that's one child that didn't have to be placed in an institution.  That's one child that was given a chance at life.  That's one child that gets to be a huge blessing to their forever family!

Please join us in sharing the Reece's Rainbow story!

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