Thursday, March 19, 2009

Would you take it away?

I feel like I have talked about Down syndrome A LOT in the last week, but the topics are out there right now... in my comment section, in blogland, on message boards, and so, I am addressing them. Why? Because this is my blog and I CAN! haha Actually because these are great topics with great points of view on both sides of the coin. As always, for those of you reading this, whether you have a child with special needs or not, feel free to chime in here. I would love to hear your thoughts.

Yesterday, Lisa talked about her son with Down syndrome and how she doesn't understand how parents would say that they wouldn't take Down syndrome away from their child if they had the opportunity. Her son, Finnian, is 8 months old. She's just starting out on this journey.

I remember, not long after Kennedy was born, I found a website that listed the physical characteristics of people with Down syndrome. Unlike the previous medically based sites though, this site was obviously written by a parent... one who had been on this Down syndrome journey much longer than I. The thing that stuck out to me was, in the list of characteristics it said, "beautiful almond shaped eyes". This made me cry. Hard. As a new mom with a child with Down syndrome, as a new mom who was terrified by this diagnosis, I couldn't understand how anyone would think ANY characteristic related to this syndrome was beautiful. I didn't get it.

Wendy replied to Lisa's post and said that she wouldn't change Kira. She also pointed out that she wished people would stop telling her she will eventually look at her daughter and not SEE Down syndrome. That she won't THINK Down syndrome every time she sees Kira. Right now she does. But she's ok with that. Chrystal made the point of how much easier her daughter's life would be without Down syndrome and all the challenges it entails. She said she tries not to think about the future for her little one... things like "School. Bad touches. Stranger Danger. Real friendships. Moving around as a military family..."

I think, when a child is born with Special Needs, any special need, most parents instantly fear for the future. Will they be able to take care of themselves? Drive? Live on their own? Become parents? Be teased in school? Will they be able to keep up with their peers? Will they be liked? Accepted? But really, these are things I think about with ALL my children. I know plenty of "adults" who can't take care of themselves. I have friends who have chosen NOT to get married, or become parents (and that's TOTALLY OK!). I know plenty of kids, typical kids, who are/were teased in school, I know plenty of kids who struggle to keep up with their peers... socially, physically, and academically. I worry about all my kids with issues like stranger danger, bad touches, real friendships, and yes even moving around as a Military family. Matthew 6:34 tells us not to worry about anything for tomorrow will worry about itself. Easier said than done, I know! I've been there. I AM there. Our human nature worries.

So now, I'm going to talk about Kennedy. We've been on this journey called Down syndrome a little longer than the families I mentioned above. This does not mean anything really, except that I've been living in the world of therapy, doctors, developmental delays, and worry a little longer than they have. I have had more time for Down syndrome to soak into every fiber of my being. So here's my take on Down syndrome, and more importantly, on my daughter.

Kennedy is amazing. She is strong willed. She is a fighter. She has endured more with a smile than I ever could. She is not afraid to tell you exactly what she thinks about things (even if we can't always understand her). She works HARD for every milestone she achieves. Yesterday, for the first time, she walked up the steps on our porch. She didn't hold my hand and she didn't put her hands to the ground to steady herself. There was no railing to hang on to. There are only 3 steps, and she took it slowly. When she got to the top she turned around, got a HUGE smile on her face and said, "MOMMY! I DID IT!" With tears in my eyes, I replied, "Yes, baby. You did it." She's almost 5. And while most parents would say "big deal", I know that it IS a BIG deal. It's HUGE, because she worked so hard for so long to be able to walk up those steps without assistance. Is it FAIR that she had to work so hard to do something that comes so easily to other kids at a much younger age? Nope. Not fair. But every milestone with Kennedy, no matter how delayed, has been a cause for celebration. Not one has been taken for granted. Every day with her is a gift.

Kennedy is 4 1/2. She walks and she talks and she goes to a typical pre-k where the other kids tower over her in height, but they love her. When she shows up to class they run to give her hugs and when she leaves, it's more hugs goodbye. And they rejoice in her accomplishments too. When I picked Kennedy up yesterday, one little girl came up to me and excitedly told me, "Kennedy kicked the ball with me on the playground and she did REALLY good!" They focus on what Kennedy CAN do, instead of what she can't. And slowly, I'm learning to do the same. Kennedy has a whole family full of her biggest fans; cheerleaders who keep her going, keep encouraging her, and the times when we get worn out, she turns around and encourages us. Kennedy has taught me how to love deeper than I had ever imagined. She's opened my eyes to worlds that I never realized existed. The world of Down syndrome, the world of childhood cancer, the world outside the United States where kids with special needs are treated horribly and basically thrown away at age 5...

SO if some scientist came up with a magic pill and said, "If you give this pill to your child, it would take away Down syndrome! It would take away the developmental delays! It would take away all your child's struggles and hardships!" Would you give it to your child? Would you?

Would I take Down syndrome away, if I could? At this point in my journey, I can honestly say no. Because Kennedy is Kennedy... Down syndrome and all. God wanted her to have that extra chromosome. I may never know why this side of Heaven, but it may have been just to teach our family some of His lessons. Will things in life be harder for her than for other kids her age? Yes. But we will be there, step by step to love her, guide her, help her (when she lets us) and cheer her on. That extra chromosome doesn't define her, but it's part of who she is; and to me, she is perfect. And I will spend the rest of my life making sure she believes that. I mean, really, just look at those beautiful almond shaped eyes.

49 comments :

Mami said...

Me emocionan tanto tus palabras que no puedo detener mis lágrimas...
Como mamá de una niña especial (secuelas de prematurez)entiendo tu orgullo y emoción cuando logran algo por ellas mismas, y sé que aunque en su desarrollo tengan que vencer muchos obstáculos, lo harán... porque son fuertes, mucho más que nosotros los padres...

Me encantó lo que escribiste: When she got to the top she turned around, got a HUGE smile on her face and said, "MOMMY! I DID IT!" With tears in my eyes, I replied, "Yes, baby. You did it." :)
Bravo Kennedy, estás en una familia que te ama mucho, y tú les enseñas mucho también..

Bendiciones...

Kari said...

Very well written, Renee. I don't have a child with down syndrome, but I kind of look at it like this...if you were pregnant and REALLY wanted to have a girl, but instead had a boy. Would you still love this little boy, or would you want to give it a pill to make him a girl? No, you would love him/her with all your heart. That's what Mother's love is!!
Just my opinion, take it or leave it...but, like I said I don't have a child with down syndrome so I may be way off.

Kari M

The Hortons...one day at a time. said...

Renee,
I LOVE this post!! I, to, am a new mom to a little boy with down syndrome!! I Love Malachi and I would not choose to take DS away from him!! If he didn't have DS he wouldn't be Malachi. My husband I would not be where we are today emotionally or mentally with out down syndrome! We too, celebrate every accomplishment and will always be here to encourage him and cheer him along!

Lisa Turner said...

OK Renee, now that I am sitting at my desk with tears running down my face........BEAUTIFUL POST.....BEUTIFUL KENNEDY!

I know exactly what you mean about rejoicing in every milestone! Way to go Kennedy! We are so PROUD of you!

I wouldn't change Mara for the world!

We love you,
Lisa

grecia said...

So beautifully written! Every person who walks on this earth should read this. Kennedy is beautiful, but she is made even more so by you.
I understand that it's not always easy, but your strong will and desire will carry over to her. Keep on cheerleading!
I'm a cheerleader, too!

Jeri said...

Thanks for your words Renee. Kennedy has been a wonderful inspiration to me and my family. When I get upset and have a hard time with the Why's and What If's I think about Kennedy. I wouldn't take Down Syndrome away from my child either. Would I take away the trials and heartache yes but my typical child has those as well. I can say that I have been given a gift to see the world in a different light that I would never had seen before Savanna. I am more caring and understanding. I will never know the why's but I try to focus on what I can made a difference in. I always realize that everyone is different and that for some parents they would take away Down Syndrome but for me with what I know right now I wouldn't take it away either.

Stephanie said...

I have to agree, when my V was born people were so wonderful at the hospital. They hugged and loved on us, they cried and told us how sorry they were. For the first few days I cried with them, after that I began to feel a little differently. As our bond grew I began to realize that this is my son, who has a serious heart condition, who could die without lifesaving intervention, and all these wonderful people are telling me how sorry they are for the one thing he can LIVE with. If they want to be sorry, be sorry that he can't breathe, that he can't eat on his own. Be sorry that at five pounds, he's going to be cut open and have his heart operated on. Be sorry that we could lose him, not that he may live with down's. Now, three years later.. he still has problems, who doesn't? But they are problems that I will forever be grateful for.. because he is here, and he's mine, and I love him.

Anonymous said...

First of all...Good job Kennedy, for reaching another milestone!!!!

If I could give Carly a pill to take away her Ds there is NO WAY I would do it. Carly is Carly. I wouldnt change her at all. We love her for who she is. Lord knows, I dont love her any less because she was born with a little something extra. Ok, so maybe the health portion of Ds is something I would change. However, all of her health issues have made us, as family much stronger, closer and more loving. Carly is here for a reason. God has a plan for her. No way would I mess with God's plan!

Joany and Carly

marlene said...

First of all, let me say . . . that was a beautifully written post, Renee!! Look at those eyes, indeed!!

I have always said - well I didn't say it during Aleena's first year - that I would not take that extra chromosome away. Aleena brings something to our family that is soooo unique - NONE of the other cousins can bring what she does to this family. She brings a joy to the family that we never experienced before she was born. She causes us to feel pride and accomplishment for milestones she reaches - that's a pride and accomplishment we never truly appreciated until she came. My mom has 5 grandchildren and while she loves all of them dearly, she has said that Aleena has found a very special place of love in her heart that is different than the other grandchildren. That extra chromosome brings GREAT challenge, but it also brings GREAT joy, GREAT love, GREAT satisfaction, GREAT pride and I could go on and on.

All that being said, though, I greatly anticipate the day that we will be in heaven and I will walk down the streets of gold with my daughter and she will be walking, running, jumping, doing cartwheels and talking my ear off, her mind whole! That makes me smile.

rylie's mom said...

I blogged about this subject before.

http://karyces.blogspot.com/2008/06/cure.html

I believe Rylie's extra chromosome is what makes her so carefree! I would love to be carefree.....I'm such a worrier and a planner.I believe Rylie's awesome personality is because of her Down syndrome. How could I want that taken from her. But on the other hand the delays, health issues etc.....of course I don't want this for her. I'd love to take that part away. I go back and forth on this all the time.

Melissa @ Banana Migraine said...

Wow! You have me all teary eyed here. We aren't as far into our journey, but I feel the same as you. When I drop Delphine off at daycare, the kids great her happily, they are ready to play with her, and I see that she plays right along with them. I love her personality, and her quirks and I think her extra chromosome brings that. Anyway...this isn't my blog and I'm rambling, but I love what you said, and I actually cheered when I thought of Kennedy walking up those stairs (that's what we are working on in PT right now). We are lucky aren't we?!

Karen said...

There are a few things that I would change in life if I could. But taking away the fact that Down syndrome touched our family is not one of them. Nor has it ever been. While Micah is not what we planned, he's exactly what we wanted. We consider ourselves blessed beyone measure.

Courtney said...

So beautiful!! And congrats to Miss Kennedy for making it up those stairs! She just made me cry and laugh out loud, all in the same sentence!!

Courtney said...

Oh, and PS, here are my thoughts on the very same question...http://cremcd.blogspot.com/2009/01/if-i-got-do-over.html

Joy said...

Well, Most importantly.. Congrats to Kennedy for making up those stairs all by herself! I am very proud of her.
As you know, I am a mother, but I am not a mother of a child with Down Syndrome. However, if I was given an option now to take a magic pill to make sure that any future children of mine did not have Down Syndrome, I would NOT take that magic pill. I truly believe that God put Kennedy and all of the children of this world that have Down Syndrome on this earth for a purpose, just like all of the children without Down Syndrome! I would never want to try to change His plan.

Renee, this is not the first time you've brought me close to tears with your beautiful writing. Have you ever considered writing a book about your family's experiences? Or a book about anything for that matter? You truly are talented.

Heidi said...

You wrote such an amazing post. Thank you for sharing your thoughts about Kennedy. She really is beautiful!

I have been following your blog for a while and have really enjoyed getting to know you and your family. You seem like such an amazing Mom!

I have two boys. My youngest (Joel) has Down Syndrome and has brought so much joy into our lives. I can't imagine my life without him. If only I could have seen how happy we would be when I was pregnant with him. I wouldn't have wasted so much time worrying!

The Munck Family said...

BRAVO...well done, well said, well written!!!!

I can say NEVER ever with the roller coasters we have been on over the last 10 1/2 years with Jonathan would I change him. We feel very blessed to have in our family, and we feel like we are better people because of him...BOY what he has taught us!!!

christy said...

Beautiful post, Renee. Thanks for that! Way to go, Kennedy!

♥Lisa♥ said...

She has gorgeous eyes!!

I wouldn't change anything with my kids, even Matthews speech problem. It has helped make him who he is today and I wouldn't change that for the world.

Wendy P said...

Beautiful, beautiful! And Go Kennedy, Go!!!

heidi marie said...

when i think about this topic it makes me just want to say one simple thing- "there are no guarantees." there are no guarantees with any child. what happens if your typical child develops autism, cancer, cp, drug problem, or so many other things that society views as negative. or what if your perfect little boy or girl doesn't want to fulfill YOUR dreams and is happy being a waitress, bus driver, mailman, or another profession that society feels doesn't hold much "value." i read an interesting article the other day about how society comes up with the value of a person by what their profession is. and it's true. we hold doctors above waitresses. but how many of you have met jerk doctors, and how many of you have met the sweetest waitress. sorry this is getting a little sidetracked. but who are we to say that our child with down syndrome aren't valuable. that they aren't meant to actually have down syndrome. in life everything does happen for a reason. there are things we choose and their are things that are chosen for us...but in the end everything occurred for a reason. and i understand the mom who wishes ds could be taken away from her child. it is a hard path. but i think everyone knows that the harder paths have the greatest outcomes.

Chrystal said...

Renee, I so very much appreciate your thoughts and the eloquent way in which you present them, especially on this topic.

What I hope is that people who read this and don't know me think that I think less of my daughter because she has Ds. I say over and over again in my post (that most people will probably not click through to read in its entirety - that's reality) that I love who my daughter is. I just wish I could protect her. As you said, any parent would feel that way. I want her to not be disctiminated against.

When I was a kid, I was Black going to a White school. As much as my mother tried to instill pride in my race in me, there were days when I wished I had long, blonde hair. I wished I wasn't different. It hurt. I can't help but remember times like that when I think about Malea. She can't change how she was born, but I want to make it easier for her while also instilling a strong sense of self within her.

It would be great if EVERYONE got it and then I wouldn't have these worries, but they don't.

Anyway, I just wanted to try to explain my perspective a little better. I don't know that I've done that, but I tried. It's hard.

Jessica said...

You have helped me understand something about each of my children, whether it is their stubbornness or emotionalness or sleeplessness or.... God has made each child the way they are, if they didn't have that personality trait or physical trait or downs they wouldn't be the same person. God knows what he is doing! And when I begin to get frustrated about that one thing, I need to remember that is who my child is because God made him/her that way. And what I may see as a negative, will may turn out to be such a strength!

Kath said...

I love this post!!

And I want to share something with you that happened in my family recently but is kinda along the same lines, my cousin who's 8 and has cerebral palsy recently sat up unaided for the first time, and his sister was excitedly telling her teacher about this. Her teacher clearly didn't really understand, but my cousin just said,
"This doesn't seem like a big deal to you, because you take sitting up for granted, but for MY brother, this is like climbing mount everest bare foot!" She's right too, don't you think?

I know CP is incredibly different to DS, but also I know my aunt wouldn't change my cousin for the world, she said once that if she took away his CP, she would change him, and she loves him for who he is. And, I would think it's the same for parents with children with the gift of the extra chromosome too!

(This may sound awkward, because I don't want to use names so I'm sticking to she, he etc, which don't scan as well.)

Lacey said...

I love Jax beautiful almond shaped eyes, and everything else down syndrome about him. The only thing thats hard for me is I feel so bad for him with all the medical stuff he's endured, yeah, its more than most T21 kids, but I would like to take all that away. But he's so strong through it all. But if he wasn't down syndrome, he wouldn't be Jax.

Sweet Angel said...

It makes me sick that 90% of down syndrome babies are being aborted. There is also an article in Women's Day where some are saying that down syndrome could be eliminated altogether. I recently touched on this in my blog. Children with that little extra 21 chromosome deserve the chance to live and be loved just like any other child. Would I take Down Syndrome away from Kristen? NO! She has brought more happiness and touched more lives for good than I can even begin to count.

Lora Leigh said...

Thank you for posting this. Even though I wouldn't change Raeleigh for the world there are still days that are difficult. Tomorrow I will pick up Raeleigh's report card and see the progress being made on her IEP and like always it will hurt to see things she isn't doing..and then when she hugs me, kisses me, and jabbers something in Raeleigh language it will be all better :)

rebecca said...

That's so beautiful. :) Kennedy is blessed, blessed, blessed to have you guys for her family!

Anonymous said...

Renee, this really was a beautifully written post. I can hear your hear talking, and you are absolutely right. She's beautiful.

Kayce S.

mom2natnkatncj said...

Very well said Renee. And you know everyone struggles with things and shines in others. I got tears in my eyes about the steps. I know that feeling of accomplishment as I've seen it on CJ's face with every new step he makes. While he doesn't have down syndrome things haven't come easy to him. And you know even Kaitlyn when she reads a book she hasn't been able to read before she is so proud of herself and it's so hard not to be proud of her. I would love for my children to not have to struggle, but if they didn't struggle with things would that make them any better? I don't think so. They would never know the joy of truly accomplishing something now would they? And you can't help but smile when you see Kennedy either, now can you?

Leigh Ann said...

Oh, Sweet Renee. What beautiful almond shaped eyes and what a beautiful post. I think you are so right, regardless of the disability or delay, parents of special needs children DO have all the same fears and worries. But, I do see similar issues (not nearly as many) but similar teasing my typical nephew endures. I guess it really is no different. When it is your child, it is your worry. I am far along in my autism journey as well. I remember the days of just starting out. I am no longer consumed by autism and finding a cure. As you said, God has a plan for Evan and I'm choosing to trust that! Derek and I talk all the time about how we have the best of both worlds...the special needs world through Evan (which has blessed me beyond measure and opened my eyes) and the typical world with my daughter. We are so blessed. Thank you for this precious post.

Kim said...

That was beautifully written! Kennedy is such a pretty girl!

I wouldn't change Mattie. I can't imagine her any different. It is amazing to me to see the lives she has already touched in her short little life.

Kate said...

I would take away my son's autism in the blink of an eye. Yeah, he'd be different, but I'd love to get to know the child that he would be without autism affecting his life the way it does.

I accept that my son has spina bifida (different child than the one with autism), but I would love to take away the chronic pain, multiple surgeries & suffering that he endures. I don't think removing the physical disability would alter him in a negative way at all, so if God wanted to heal him, I wouldn't mind.

I do agree that you eventually get to a point where you don't see your child as their disability. I don't look at David and immediately think 'autism', nor do I look at Joshua and see him in terms of 'spina bifida'. Their challenges are just part of them,, part of what our family lives with, and it's normal to us. But if there was a magic pill that would take their struggles away, yeah, I'd give it to them. Why wouldn't I want their lives to be easier and for them to be more-readily accepted by society? People can be very cruel and insensitive to children/adults who are different, especially when they don't understand why the child acts the way they do (autism) or those who use a wheelchair.

whittakerwoman said...

Ok... this is off topic but really do you think you do not know what you are going to do? you are so amazing at creating a community! You will be leading something and building support for it! H

Kristen said...

Ok, seriously...that should be published in the medical community! Awesome, amazing, inspiring, and honest. LOVE IT!

Janet said...

What would it mean to take away Luke's autism? Would he be the same huggable kid? Would he still have stuggles in school (how many of the stuggles are "him" and how many are the autism)? What about the sensory integration issues -- would those go away, or would I need another "magic pill"? And the development delays - are they just him? 2 years in an orphanage? autism? Same thing with the apraxia? So now I have all these "issues" fixed. What about the cleft lip and palate problems -- is there a pill for that too? And the ear issues? OK -- how about his height? (you probably get my point)

If I could take away Luke's stuggles I would in an instant. I do believe in miracles. I also believe that God gave humans the ability to do research, find effective treatments, find cures, etc.

I chose a child who had been born with a complete bilateral cleft lip and palate. I did not choose autism. Did God make this decision? I don't know. My decision to adopt was prayerfully made. But that still doesn't answer the question. What I do know is that God uses all things for good. I still have lots of questions (that won't be answered on earth) and I am still waiting to see more of the good. I am a patient woman (or at least I try to be :-)

Lynn said...

Continuing to lift up prayers for your family!
2 Thessalonians 3:5 And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ.
Prayer Bears
My email address

momof4as said...

You really are the best writer Renee - I have tried to comment on this post several times but I can't come up with the right words... I am just going to say I am so glad Kennedy is Kennedy. Who would want to change that?

Jeff & Aleigh said...

Kennedy is so beautiful!!! I love to read your blog and I love the passion you have!!! If I could afford to adopt all down syndrome kids in the world, I would!!

Courtney said...

GREAT post Renee....I think you pretty much said everything I feel!
I LOVE my little man, and Down syndrome makes him him. CUTER!!!!!
I don't care what anyone thinks or says...down syndrome makes him soooo cute! IT makes us soooo proud of eveything he does, and we take nothing for granted. HE is the way God intended him to be. If you would have asked me during the first year of his life I might have considered it....because i didn't know he would be able to walk and talk and play and have friends and carry his own bookbag to a cubby just like his other friends, and crack up at the funny parts on TV, and run into my lap at the scary ones, and ask to call him Papa....and so on and so on. He is a great kid that has taught us all so much and brought us such wonderful people in our lives! I think that is the way God intended it.

Sadie said...

I don't have any kids with Ds, just a brother with developmental and physical delays, sort of a hodge-podge really, no diagnosis. We adopted him when I was a kid and the first time I met him (at 4) I said "wow...he has a really big head and a really small body" We were the same size when I was 4 and he was 11 (except his head that was a big bigger in my mind apparently). That's all I noticed though....Jeremiah doesn't have most of his right arm, he had a cleft palate/cleft lip and many other physical disabilities. As a kid I never knew about "disabilities" or the "r word" except that we didn't use those words at my house, in my mind I had blonde hair and Jeremiah had brown...all of the other differences were just that, differences, not "disabilities". The first time I heard someone talk about "disabilities" and how they were bad I was shocked and offended because I'd heard that word used to talk about my brother and I didn't understand what was "bad" about my brother. I think adults have a lot to learn from kids. I'm sure to Keeghan his big sister is as perfect as she can be and he wouldn't want any other big sister!!

Jeanette said...

Very well said Renee. Kennedy does have beautiful almond eyes! give her a bug hug from her fans in Texas. GREAT job for going up the stairs!!!

Michelle said...

I think you are so well-spoken, and honest. And I love how you give such a clear view of gaining acceptance - how you've grown & learned.

And Kennedy is amazing - no doubt about that! She's a poster child for Tough Cookie!!

Charissa said...

Beautifully written....

Michelle said...

Perfect; just perfect. I know - the eyes get me too. Beautiful, almond shaped, with all of the brushfield spots that the angels so delicately placed. You know where we are “at.” For me, it really has never been the formal triplication/the diagnosis, but what gets me are the medical intricacies. Really, though, they only make each member of our family just a little bit stronger. We’ll get through it…

Such an eloquent post. xo

Thanks, btw, for the award!

datri said...

I'm so behind on blogs, haven't gotten around to Lisa's post yet, tho I know she struggles with her journey.

I wouldn't take away Kayla's Down syndrome. It makes her who she is. Now, the autism....that's another story!

datri said...

Which makes me wonder...would you take away Kam's PDD-NOS? I wish I could leave some of Laurie's quirkiness with the PDD-NOS, but take away those annoying tantrums, obsessiveness, and rigidity!!

wvamom said...

You know, sometimes I think it's better that we don't get to pick some of the struggles we go through. Our son with DS is 16--could we love him any more if he were any other way? of course not! Do we accept him totally the way he is? Resoundingly, yes! And yet, if he had the opportunity to be made "whole," how could I deprive him of that? He is a wonderful young man in his own right, and I cherish the great things about him--his sensitivity to the feelings of others, the way he loves to teaase me, his hugs, his cooking skills...well, you get the picture. But if I could somehow change him to have 46 chromosomes instead of 47, how would it be fair to him not to give him that chance?

As I said before, sometimes it is better for us not to have to make those choices.

But what I hear each of you saying is that you love your children unconditionally, you rejoice in their accomplishments, you treasure their strengths, and you are willing to help them in whatever way they need. And I applaud each of you for those qualities. And I agree. The world would be much poorer without our precious children.
Carolyn

Penny said...

I loved this Renee. I can see myself in so much of it. I love Madison just the way she is. If I were to give her that magic pill, it would be so that she wouldn't have to go through the teasing for being different. The kids are wonderful with her now, but I know as they grow older the differences are going to be more obvious and, kids will be kids. I know we will eventually have problems with some kids teasing her.

What really jumped out at me though was when you mentioned someone said they have to stop and think about their child having DS. When Madison was born, that was ALL I could see was the DS. Now, like your friend, I have to stop and remind myself sometime that she has it, because she is just like any other child!