Friday, October 1, 2010

Here We Go,,, 31 for 21

If you haven't heard yet, October is Down syndrome awareness month. If you are new to my blog or a new parent to a child with Ds, or just found out you are carrying a child with Ds, this post is for you.

I thought my first post this month should be a congratulatory one. So to all of you who are just entering this beautiful world Welcome and Congratulations!

My daughter will turn two... gulp, this month and I have spent the last two years learning about her and her incredibly interesting extra chrom. I've learned medical facts up the wazoo! I've learned all about the "stats" The expected age of accomplishments.   I've learned all about Speech Therapy and OT and PT and Food clinics. I'm learning about schools and sign language and Music Therapy.  I've read books and talked to doctors and researched until I was dizzy.

And  do you know what the most important thing I found out was? It was the one thing I didn't learn from all the medical info or the stats that I felt the need to memorize or any session with her PT, OT or ST.  I didn't learn it from a book or a doctors office, and I definitely didn't learn it from researching on the Internet.

I learned the most important thing about Down syndrome from my daughter Emilia Faith . She taught me that after all is said and done, she's just a kid. She's just like any other little girl. 

She plays and laughs. She sleeps and poops. imagine that!
She loves to look at herself in the mirror, she loves to be outside, and of course TV, rocks! She listens to music and can keep a beat. She hugs and kisses her baby doll. She loves to eat, Tacos are her favorite along with any kind of pie. If you have an Oreo you'd better hide it, or she will stalk you until your pinned against a wall and have no choice but to hand it over. Her new favorite pass time is bouncing a ball. It simply puts her in hysterics.

She also knows how to throw a whopper of a tantrum, expects her way all the time and has a cheesy smile she saves for special occasions. She hears the word 'NO" at least 100 times a day, and acknowledges maybe one or two of them.   
If you read this any where else you would say to yourself, "sounds like a typical two year old to me".

Well that's exactly what she is. You see they 're not going to tell you that when they hand you a diagnosis of Ds. If they did the abortion rate wouldn't be around 90%. 

When I found out I was pregnant with Olivia, my first born, and a "typical" child. They didn't tell me there would be health scares and high fevers, stomach bugs and puke all over. They didn't tell me there would be days, that were so bad ,I would just sit and cry or days I wished I didn't have to let her go, How about the days when she's hurt and your heart is breaking for her. How about her first real disappointment , the kind you can't fix.  They don't warn you that hey, raising any kid is hard, and there is no such thing as a typical or "normal" child. There are struggles and there are hurdles to fly over, with all children 

And I know what you're thinking. What about all the health issues that come along with Ds. And yes, I know they are scary.
But... are they so scary that a child with say a heart condition isn't worth giving the chance to live?  If an unborn child is diagnosed with a heart condition and does not have Ds, and another child is diagnosed with the same heart condition and does have Ds, which one do you think has a better chance of being born?
My point being, health issues can come along with any child. Most can be treated. And every child deserves a chance to live.

If you are a new parent with a child who has Ds, then you understand the love you have for your baby. It's the most unbelievable feeling. 
If by some chance you're reading this and are carrying a child with Ds. Please find comfort. Don't be afraid. 
And if by some chance you are carrying a child with Ds and are uncertain what to do. Don't give up on your baby. You are carrying the sweetest gift you will ever be given. Hang on to him/her with all you might.


The VW's said...

Definitely the sweetest gift ever given!!! Hugs!!

patsy said...

sooo true! our maggie has brought us so much joy since she arrived 16 months ago. maybe one day the whole world will see what we see :)

the three wise menn said...



Becca said...

Beautiful post. I hope that is the one new moms find this month. :-)

Tina said...

Thanks to that lovely start to the 31 for 21 challenge. I look forward to the next 30 days!

Rochelle said...

Great post Steph! As I struggle just to get my Thankful Thursdays done sometimes I didn't jump into the 31 for 21 challenge but, am excited there are so many people that have and look forward to reading your posts.

Zoey's mom said...

The sweetest gift ever indeed!

Great first post Stephanie.I am so looking forward to reading everyone's daily post ... such a fun and informative month,devoted to our little loves.

Have a great weekend.

Melissa M said...

Great post! I'm so excited to see what everyone comes up with this month!

Emily said...

Fabulous post! I have not been a blogger in a long while. Your header picture is darling!!!

Ruby's Mom said...

Oh,my,I see the most beautiful girl in your header!!!Our girls are getting so big!Like Em ,my Ruby has most definitly got a 2 year old attitude! No,is often heard here too.So much fun ;)You are soooo right about us needing to meet :)
I love this post it's perfect!!

Lori said...

Wow! I can't wait to read 30 more of these great posts! =)
And you are so right...there are just as many struggles with our typical kids as our enhanced ones...they are just different struggles. But the Joy -- oh, the sweet, sweet Joy - is immeasurable!

Oh - And yes - I would love an apple pie -- do you ship to NJ or do I have to come pick it up? =)

ch said...

You are just on a roll lately, Lady. Dropping gems all over the place. :0) Love you so...

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Shelly said...

I wanted to take a minute and come out of "lurking" mode, and tell you how VERY much I love reading your blog! We are in the process of bringing home a daughter from China who was born with DS and I have been scouring the internet to find moms out there who are living what we will be living! You are such an inspiration to me! We can't wait for our sweet Gracie to come home and join our family! Thank you for all that you share!

I look forward to reading your 31 for 21 posts!

~ deb ~ said...

You have a beautiful way of sharing the real experience of loving a DS child. I love reading your blog.