Day before yesterday, I read Joli Beasley’s post about cooking with one arm. What a wonderful post. It has made me think about my own experiences with living with a birth defect.
I was born with a condition called Amniotic Band Syndrome or ABS. This is a fairly rare condition caused by fibrous tissue from the mother’s amniotic sack getting wrapped around part of an unborn baby’s body and constricting normal growth activity. In my case the fingers on my left hand were injured as well as the toes on my right foot.
First of all let me publicly say that I love my left hand and right foot. They may look “different” but they are mine and I cherish them!!! I have never known a ‘normal’ left hand or right foot so for me they are normal. My right hand may look different but it is totally functional!! A few years ago a hand surgeon re-examined my left hand and said in his entire thirty years as a hand surgeon, he had never seen a hand as deformed as my hand be 100 per cent functional! I cherish that compliment. He credited my precious parents with that success. He said they had protected it from injury while allowing it to do as many things as it could.
The reason I cherish my hand so is because it has made me a better person! It has taught me to look at the whole person rather than concentrating on one part of the person.
I have based my life on a promise I made to God when I was a small child. I want to someday stretch out my two hands to the Lord and say to Him that I have used what He has given me to help people and animals. To me a deformed hand is a hand that looks normal physically but is deformed spiritually and does harm to a person or an animal. To me that is a deformed hand, not a hand that looks different! I want to use my two beautiful hands to make the world a better place to live!
The Bible tells us to thank the Lord in all situations; therefore I can humbly say “Thank You Lord God for giving me the hands You have given me. Help me to use them for Your Honor and Glory!”