As Diana surveyed her newborn baby's face, languid body, and absent cry, she knew something was wrong. Then the doctors delivered devastating news: her first child, Emma, had been born with a rare genetic disorder that would leave her profoundly physically and intellectually disabled.
Diana imagined life with a child with disabilities as a dark and insular one—a life in which she would be forced to exist in the periphery alongside her daughter. Convinced of her inability to love her “imperfect” child and give her the best care and life she deserved, Diana gave Emma up for adoption. But as with all things that are meant to be, Emma found her way back home.
As Emma grew, Diana watched her live life determinedly and unapologetically, radiating love always. Emma evolved from a survivor to a warrior, and the little girl that Diana didn’t think she could love enough rearranged her heart. In her short eighteen years of life, Emma gifted her family the indelible lesson of the healing and redemptive power of love.
This is a mother’s requiem to her perfectly imperfect child—a child who left too soon, but whose lessons continue to inspire a life lived and loved.