April is Limb Difference Awareness Month. It’s been 10 months since we found out our baby was going to be born without most of her fingers on her left hand. It’s been nearly 6 months since Livy was born and we saw her hands with our own eyes. We fell in love, hard.
When we first learned about her difference we were scared and unprepared for the news. My two thoughts were that I didn’t want her to be bullied and I didn’t want us as a family to be pitied. We cannot control these two things. What can we do? Love her hard. We can show Livy that there are infinite possibilities for her. We can help other parents and children learn that everyone is different and not to be afraid of approaching us with any and all questions.
Since she has been born, Livy has shown us that she is so strong-willed. She was born in the aftermath of a bad wind storm that knocked out power lines and knocked down trees. She has been fiercely loved by her family and friends. She has met most of her milestones at an earlier time point than her older sister did. We see now that her limb difference is not going to hold her back one bit. In fact, it is a part of her that makes her infinitely awesome.
Please do not pity us or any other family you see with a child who is “different”. Please engage with us. Ask questions. Let your children ask us questions. Kids ask the best, most innocent questions! If you’d like to learn more, the Lucky Fin Project has been a wonderful resource for us.