Life is not fair – that is a fact. There are many people who were born ‘perfect’ – rich, handsome or beautiful, intelligent, and lucky in everything in life – while there are others who were born so unlucky that they are not just poor but also ridden with a lot of other problems, including health issues.
In the US and other advanced countries, parents can already determine whether their children have health issues and other problems even while they are still inside the mommy’s tummy. Once they learn the truth, these parents have the right to terminate the pregnancy.
Sara Heller and her partner, Chris, were told by doctors during the 24-week ultrasound that the baby growing inside her tummy was going to have cleft palate, a condition that would keep him looking different all his life. This would affect his speech and could give him lots of other problems beyond the physical.
They were advised to terminate the pregnancy. The couple refused.
They promised to love the baby, no matter how he would look. They also promised to provide him with the best medical care they could ever afford, to ensure he would live a better life.
Sara and Chris have committed not just to loving their son, Brody, but to also raise awareness for cleft palate.
“It is OK to be proud of your baby no matter the circumstances. We wanted to change what ultrasound/newborn/first year pictures on our Facebook/Instagram accounts looked like. We wanted to spread awareness of cleft lips and palates,” she wrote.
Indeed, like most parents, Sara and Chris enjoyed posting photos of Brody on social media. While some netizens were harsh on them, they received an outpouring of support from the international community for their choice to keep Brody.
Others were actually curious as to why Brody’s face has deformities, asking the new mom what’s wrong with the boy.
“I decided to educate rather than create a confrontation because that is what I want Brody to do in the future. I will want him to educate, to be an advocate for younger cleft kids who don’t have their own voice yet,” Sara explained.
One day, while dining out with their son, the couple received an anonymous note through the waiter. Inside the folded paper were $1,000 and a message, “For the beautiful baby.” It truly touched their hearts.
As promised, the couple loved Brody with all their heart and did everything they could to make his life better. Last year, he underwent lip surgery to repair the flap.
“This experience has shown us just how strong the cleft community is. We’ve been contacted by people all over the country. They are praying for us and asking us to reach out if we need anything,” Sara added.