A Blessing in Disguise

Today I saw a photo and article in Parade magazine about the marvels of 3D printing. I read about a young girl’s condition called amniotic band syndrome. I realize that this is what happened to me!

I was born in 1955 with nubs for fingers on my left hand and rings around my toes and my right leg was twisted backwards at birth. I remember  hearing something about bands but never knew the name of the condition and I am almost 60 years old!

My parents never spoke about it and I was never treated any differently than my siblings or friends. My leg was broken and set many times in my first year of life to correct it and I had to wear corrective shoes for a long time. The doctors must have done a wonderful job because I am an avid hiker and tennis player. I must say that I often felt that I had been blessed, as I grew up with a compassion for people with “differences”.

Later, my children often had me show their friends my “funny hand”. Now my grandchildren ask me to show their friends. I concur with the previous stories. Do NOT treat your child as though she/he is handicapped. I, too, naturally hid my hand and that became an unconcious habit. I am happy to show my hand and it has become a source of pride for me as I made my living as an artist for 35 years and paddled outrigger canoes competitively for 12 years. I think the only thing I couldn’t do was play guitar and throw a balanced pot on a potters wheel!