I've watched other fellow down syndrome bloggers go through, what I call, the road to acceptance. A similar journey we all seem to go on. 2 is the age when everything becomes good. Not good because we are talking our way through it and hoping for the best, but good as in we truly would not life to be any other way. The last two years, plus however many months I knew Fiona's diagnosis prenatally, were filled with fear, hope, doubt, strength, anger and happiness. I was like an emotional teenager, giving in to whatever feeling rose up in the moment. And just like a teenager, I acted like I knew it all. But, really, I was still just learning. And now it seems that I have graduated on, confidant in what I know but wiser to know there is still a lot more to learn.
Fiona is my professor. Teaching me more about life, God and acceptance then any classroom ever has. I held her close tonight and told her without a smidgen of doubt that I couldn't have asked God for a better baby. My blogger friend Michelle recently wrote a great post about the two extreme outlooks on Down syndrome. From the medical, science and well-to-do world we get a voice of doom and gloom about Down syndrome, while from families with a loved one with an extra 21st chromosome we hear more of a rainbows and unicorns view. This is no facade or lie. Nothing I say is sugar coated or tied with a bow for a better apparance. And now with full honesty I can say I love Down syndrome, I would not want to remove it from my daughter if I could, and she is perfectly made with her mosaic cells of trisomy 21 and normal 46.
Shes walking now. I am still hesitant to call her a Walker, because there is still a lot of the Fiona crawl going on, but my tiny just-over-2-feet-tall princess can walk across a room. Regularly. She is signing. She listens when I tell her "no" or "stop" or "put your hands down" or the most frequently yelled "SIT DOWN!", and she obeys. She plays pretend, loves to brush her dolls hair and attempt to put everyone's shoes on, big or small. She dances her heart out to every beat she hears. She adores babies and dogs, and insists on kissing them both. She barks every time we enter a house, looking and hoping that there will be a dog there. She is talking- quite a big list of words she has- and she whispers them all. She lights up when she hears her brothers voices and disparately yells for them. She starts calling for Dada the second we turn into his work parking lot. She loves to climb on my back like she is riding a horse, or rest her head on my belly when I am laying down. She uses her whole body to say no, one tiny flailing hysterical mess. She loves meat and hates vegetables ( 100% opposite from her brothers). She likes to do things by herself, even when its something she isn't capable of doing. She tries, and then tries again. Peek-a-boo is a sure thing to make her laugh, so we play that A LOT. She is a climber, and lucky for her she still easily fits into baby things like infant car seats, swings, and bouncy seats so she takes over them whenever we are around babies. Come to think of it, height and weight wise, she probably still qualifies to use an infant car seat. She is amazing. Vibrant. Loving. Sassy. Smart. Kind-hearted. Gentle. Determined. Inspiring. Perfect.
|photography by Sean Ocean|
Lend me your eyes, I'll change what you see.