Our Five Ring Circus: Finding Beauty

Friday, March 21, 2014

Finding Beauty

Today is World Down Syndrome Day.  It is a day devoted to raising awareness about Down Syndrome. 

7 months ago, I gazed into the eyes of my newborn, and immediately knew my life was about to change. 

I stared down at my baby, tears running down my cheeks, and all I could see was the way his eyes slanted up and the extra skin at the back of his neck. My heart plummeted and I felt like life as I knew it was over.


I am ashamed to admit that in the few hours after Liam's birth all I saw was Down Syndrome.


Now, all I can see is Liam.


I see a beautiful person who can capture anyone's heart with a single smile.


I see a person who is unbelievably sweet, gentle, pure, and good.


I see a person who brings joy to this world.


I see a person with an incredible soul.


I see a person who lives life to the fullest.


I see a person with fierce determination.


I see a person who refuses to be a stereotype.


I see a person who defies all odds.


I see a person with eyes, a nose, a mouth, ears, hair, two arms, two legs, feet and hands, fingers and toes.  A person.  Just like any other.

My life did change when Liam came into our world.  But not in the way I expected.  It became better.  He was the unexpected blessing I never knew I wanted or needed.  He is one of the most beautiful human beings I know.

Most days, I forget he has Down Syndrome.  Because he's Liam.  Just Liam.

His genetic test may say one thing, but his beautiful eyes, smile, and spirit say so much more.

In those hours after his birth, I failed to see his beauty.


Now, it takes my breath away. 


  1. Beautiful post and a beautiful boy! Can I be honest? I recently looked back through your archives because I didn't know!

  2. He is a precious gift from God! I think he has taught us all what true beauty is!!!!

  3. Oh my gosh, what an amazing post. I just read an article from another mom who gave birth to a baby with Down Syndrome, and she had a photographer in the room when he was born who captured her emotions of disappointment, fear and sadness. She has since posted these pictures publicly and admits, like you, how her initial feelings were not those that she's proud of but how much BETTER her life is now!!! I love your honesty. And I love his face. He's beautiful!

  4. Such a beautiful post! Thinking of you and your sweet Liam today!

  5. You should never be ashamed of the first few hours after birth. You are human and were entering a world of the unknown, which is scary. You had fears and were flooded with moments of silence by doctors and nurses. All of that mixed with just giving birth, your reaction was completely natural/normal. You were processing the birth of your baby, the gift of life you were given and trying to understand how life was going to be with him. Liam has defied all odds with his health and he is totally awesome :) and loved by so many people! Genetics is just a thing, it doesn't define him or the love that people have for him. XOXOX

  6. Beautiful post! Bless his heart!

  7. He is SO breathtakingly gorgeous! What a gift.

  8. Lovely, lovely post. For some reason it made me think of one of my favorite poems...from Keats Ode on a Grecian Urn: "Beauty is truth, truth beauty, that is all ye know on earth and all ye need to know." Much love to you both.

  9. Gave me chills. So perfectly written.

    And I could say the exact same thing about when we found out Alex was deaf. At first, all I could see was a deaf boy. Now - all I see is Alex.

    Our perfectly beautiful boys.

  10. Beautiful beautiful post, friend. Touched my heart thank you for sharing. He is so beauriful and has one amazing momma

  11. So beautiful-- him, and you. xo

  12. Loving this post! Loving Liam and all his beauty

  13. Beautiful post, beautiful momma, beautiful boy! He will do amazing things and I am so happy to be apart of it!!!

  14. Wonderful post! Thanks for bringing us along for the journey, he is such a sweet boy!

  15. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this. He is PRECIOUS. And those eyes?! Could kill someone from a mile away.

  16. This is beautiful!! Liam is an absolute doll and I can't wait to see what's in store for him and your family! :)

  17. I love you, Liam, and all the emotions I still feel surrounding his birth! He was so loved and wanted during his time in your belly...it's just a continuation. I feel this overwhelming protectiveness about this sweet boy. And honored to share my birthday with a day honoring him!

  18. Down Syndrome children have a special place in my heart. Growing up I had a friend with a sister that had down syndrome. She was the happiest, sweetest girl. I know Liam is such a gift to your family!

  19. He's beautiful. While pregnant with my son, tests said he had a high chance of having Downs. He did not, but of all "things" to have, Downs (to me) is one of the easiest. Now, I'm saying that as a mom with no parenting experience but I'm a teacher who has taught a few with DS. I've also taught kids of every other disorder out there. DS kids have always had a special place in my heart. They are always happy, full of life, and beautiful. Your little Liam is no exception! All of your kids are beautiful.

  20. Thanks so much for sharing about your wonderful little man! I, too, have a son with Down syndrome; however, my Drew is 27 years old. Your pictures remind me of when he was a baby. I share some of your same emotions at his birth, too. I wrote about it in one of my posts on Mother's Day. Here's the location if you'd like to read it. Have a great day! http://passthehoney.blogspot.com/2014/05/mothers-day.html

  21. Ok I'm a reader from KK. I'm now in tears. This is a beautiful post. Your baby is darling!!! I love my Downs friends! They are the sweetest people I know.

  22. He is so adorable. Beautiful post!

  23. Found your blog from KK. Loved seeing the pictures of your son. I have a 28 year old son who happens to have DS, and he's the oldest of our 4. I'm a bit farther down the road than you are, but seeing your pictures take me back to those early days. Liam is soooo cute! I have a blog http://martysmoosetracks.blogspot.com/.It's mainly about our lives with Joshua, but it's also about the rest of our family, so you might be bored...but you are welcome to read it! :) http://martysmoosetracks.blogspot.com/2013/08/not-those-exact-words.html


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