Face of hope

Face of hope
Courtesy: TIffany Kay Photography

Friday, April 17, 2015


Meagan has been able to do a lot of things her older sisters do at school through her special needs classroom - art, music, playing with friends, learning, and eating in the cafeteria.  She also got her very first school photo!
Meagan's first school picture! 
(Courtesy of: School Pictures of Georgia)

We are going to order the nice non-watermarked prints of course, but as pointed out by a few friends and family, this marked photo is ironically perfect for Meagan.  There is no better word to be prominently displayed across her photo. She is just that.  Proof.  Proof that doctors can't predict the future.  Proof that we shouldn't let best guesses dictate our love for our children.  Proof that no matter the odds stacked against someone, no one knows what we are truly capable of.  Proof that no matter the abilities, there is always a purpose, a meaning, and a light for every human life that only God can know.

A few weeks ago, as college basketball came to an end, Meagan was so excited to have a "Go X" shirt just like her sisters.  Being that Brian and I are both Xavier alum, we love to pass our love of the school and its basketball program on to our girls.  The older girls had helped Meagan make her shirt and on it we had put a quote from one of their favorite seniors, Matt Stainbrook, in which he said "People always talk about underestimating us......."...."but by no means is that us..."  He was referring to many of the main sports announcers who almost yearly always discount Xavier basketball to advance in the NCAA tournament despite every talent to do so. It spoke to me so much because I will never forget the day the perinatologist told us that about Meagan.  "She won't do much..."...."she will be a burden..."..."it will be too hard on your older four girls..."  Despite being grounded in our belief to always give our children a chance at life, those words would make anyone feel sick.  Stainbrook's quote seemed the perfect finish to Meagan's homemade Xavier shirt.  

As the NCAA tournament went on, and Xavier finally lost in the Sweet 16, we were so proud of our alma mater.  I posted the picture of Meagan and the shirt to congratulate our Xavier team and also thank Matt for such encouraging words, as they had transcended basketball for our family.  Fast forward to this week - we had a small snowball of misfortunes come across the family but were at the same time marking 2 1/2 months of Meagan having NO hospital stays or doctor visits which far outshadowed any struggles.  A box arrived in the mail and much to our (and our kids') surprise, it was a lovely gift from our Xavier family - and Matt had signed a small basketball for Meagan.  She was absolutely elated! She still has not let go of her "Go X ball" and truly appreciated the gift.  It brought a huge smile to my face, Brian was surprised and grateful, and our own little basketball team of the 5 girls were so thankful for the sweet gifts.  It was proof to me that even across the miles, her story can touch others and inspire joy.

It was in that moment that I looked at Meagan's picture again and realized my initial thoughts were true.  She was living proof of determination, love, and God's grace on earth.  I think I will in fact send her picture to my old doctor - but I will make sure he gets a copy with the oh so true watermark right on the front - Proof. 

A sincere thank you from our family to our alma mater for thinking of us.  You sure have made our day, and Meagan is just a "little" excited about her special present. 


  1. Beautiful post! Every time I read a story about a dr telling a family that their child with hydrocephalus will never (fill in the blank here) I feel so very grateful to our dr's who simply said, "we don't know what this means for her future". All you have to do is meet a few hydro kiddos to know that there is absolutely no predicting what these kids will or will not be able to do. To say that they will never do anything and simply be a burden is just blatantly false. It makes me feel sick too. I have to wonder how many people choose termination based on that incorrect information. It makes me wish I could talk to every parent that receives this diagnosis and introduce them to Ellie and tell them their IS hope.