There was a woman I knew whom I admire very much because her life-giving choice made a huge difference in my family’s life and in the life of her child. This person suffered greatly from addictions, issues of abandonment and violence.  But I remember Lynn as a person who loved babies, who cooed and talked to her baby daughter and who always chose to put this child’s welfare above her own.    The child she bore is now part of our family; still a child, she brings light and joy to the siblings and others who nurture her.  She has recently been formally adopted into our family and for this we will always be blessed and thankful.

We brought Shauntell home from hospital as a foster child. One day I brought her to the Social Services department for a visit with her birth mom.  I was also on the way to see a physician about the baby’s medical condition.  Immediately Lynn sensed that Shauntell was irritable and needed her foster mom and insisted I carry on to our doctor’s appointment giving up what precious little time she had to bond and enjoy this new baby.

When Lynn’s social worker thought it was time for her birth mom to "try " a night visit with Shauntell, Lynn called us to pick up the baby when she found it difficult to cope.  She demonstrated great humility and courage in putting this child’s needs above what must have been her own need to mother and feel capable.

Lynn’s legacy is the child she shared life with and although Lynn is deceased; she will always be remembered in our family as a woman who left light in the world despite her own life of suffering and darkness.  And from her gift springs hope.

The child she bore will become a well –grounded woman of virtue, a leader in her family and community.  She will always uphold the dignity of life in all its stages because of her birth mother’s legacy of love.

Copyright 2010 Cathy Craig