I'm still frustrated over people. Total strangers whom I would never meet in real life, but who, through words or pictures or illustrations or whatever, have impacted my life. And not in a good way.
I guess my problem is that I just don't understand. One can claim ignorance, I suppose, but sometimes that feels like a cop-out. If you are going to make a public statement of one kind or another, one that you know will most likely be highly controversial (and I'm sorry, but you cannot tell me that you didn't know that making a statement regarding abortion, or drawing a picture involving a birth defect is not going to be controversial...), wouldn't you take the time to educate yourself about it first? I mean, really?
I don't make what I consider controversial statements on here. But even the statements I do make, come from information that I gathered, either through the course of our own personal experience with cleft, or by my own research as I search for answers to my questions. I don't pull things out of my hat, or left field, or make things totally up and expect people to not question why I said what I did or did what I did. I hope that makes sense.
Perhaps the truth is that really I am just hurt. My daughter is PERFECT. She is exactly the way that she was meant to be. It may not be the way I imagined she would be. It may not be the "perfect" that most people would expect. But she is perfect. Now that we are (nearly) three years in to this journey, I just can't imagine her any other way. She wouldn't be my Little Miss Sunshine. It took me a very, very, very long time (nearly three years!) to reach this point. I, out of all of our family probably, had a very hard time accepting and adjusting to the idea of her cleft. I'm not really sure what that was. I imagine it probably had a lot to do with not knowing about it until she was born. I'm a planner. I always have been. And I had a plan for this little girl. And when she came, that plan got thrown right out the window. Because that plan would not work for her. And I just had a very hard time dealing with that. It really messed up my whole world. For a long time, I felt like a bad mom for feeling that way. I felt like something in ME must be really messed up to feel angry, and sad, and a whole host of other emotions. I felt guilty. I know now that those are normal feelings. It is normal to feel a loss when your child is born with a defect of some kind. Because you plan for one thing. And you get another. And it takes time to make up a new plan. And you need time to let go of the old one. It's NORMAL. So maybe I'm hurt by the fact that these people don't even take that pain into consideration. That they don't see my daughter as perfect, as a gift, the way I do. Instead, they see her as a punishment. Or a joke. A caricature. But the truth is: She is none of those things. She is just my daughter. My perfectly beautiful, perfectly funny, perfectly cute, perfectly crazy, perfectly spoiled, perfectly loving, perfectly perfect little girl. I just wish that those people would take the time to see her that way, the way I do.