Often, I get so caught up in my own little bubble that I tend to forget that she might be having an impact on peoples' lives that I just can't see. One such group that has been impacted are the teens of St. George Cathedral in Wichita, Kansas - where, for those that don't know, my husband was former youth director, and I was kind of his side-kick. These amazing teens, led by their president Grace Farha, decided to have wristbands made in honour of Lucia. The wristbands read "Every good and perfect gift is from above Lucia." We were and are so incredibly touched by this act of love -- it really brought tears to our eyes when we first learned about it. The teens are selling these wristbands, and profits will be donated to our church, St. Anthony's, for the purchase of a St. Lucia icon. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you St. George teens! We love you and miss you terribly!!!
My former co-workers at Hinkle-Elkouri law firm in Wichita, sporting their Lucia bracelets.
We are also incredibly grateful to and touched by Miss Rawan Ashrawi, a teen from our church, who decided to research the awareness ribbon for Trisomy 18. After finding out that it is light blue, Rawan went out and purchased light blue ribbon and made awareness ribbons. She brought them to church this past Sunday, and I will be more than happy to give one to whoever would like one. Thank you so much Rawan -- your kindness and love mean more than you know.
I never realized it like I do now, but it is so important to raise awareness about disease and illness. I think awareness lessens our ignorance and initiates the first steps for us to embrace and love people better. It also helps, in our case, to advocate to the medical community that Trisomy 18 kids are out there and they need to be treated with the same degree of care and integrity as all other patients. I say this because MANY doctors have never even seen a Trisomy 18 child, and when some encounter a baby like Lucia for instance, they might have no clue what to do. They are thrown off, because according to the stats, they're "not supposed to be living." We have had a few experiences where that has been the case, but more often than not, we've been blessed with excellent medical attention...besides we do live in close proximity to one of the world's greatest medical centres - thank you God. :)
Rawan, Lucia and I sporting our beautifully madeTrisomy 18 awareness ribbons.