Thursday, October 11, 2007

Get Over Yourself

As Nic said most of accepting the diagnosis of Down syndrome is just getting over yourself.

I've never taken myself too seriously, so perhaps that's why it was quite easy for me to accept.

We all know how it is before we have children - we think we are going to have kids that say, "yes, ma'am" to us, and please and thank you instead of "give me!" We think they will be cute and smart, and ahead of all of their peers in whatever they do. We devour baby books because we know our kids will most certainly be ahead of all those charts.

We know for sure that our kids will go to bed promptly at 7:30, and never, ever through a temper tantrum in a store. We'll sign them up for baby yoga, and Mom and me swimming lessons, and gymastics, and all of the other Moms will be a little jealous at how well our kids perform.

Our little girls will be ballerinas, and our little boys will play Little League Baseball.

We see other children in public, and silently tsk tsk them under our breaths - what the heck are those parents thinking? Don't they know anything?

When school starts, our child will be the teacher's favorite, and will get invited to all of the birthday parties.

Life is smooth sailing, save for an ear ache or a runny nose here or there.

O.k....are we done yet????

Get over it peeps - even "generic" kids as a friend of mine says, are going to surprise the daylights out of us when we spend all night up with a crying babe, or when we can't pick our 18 month old up off the floor at the mall because he can't buy a Thomas The Tank toy.

Having a child with Trisomy 21 sometimes takes some getting over oneself. We have to put aside all of those lists we have made in our heads about the "perfect" child and just get on with it already.

There may be medical problems, some minor and some not so minor. There may be delays, some slight and some not. There will definitely be joy - small daily joys, and shout-from-the-rooftop joy.

Now, I am SO not one of those pre-moms who think I know everything about parenting. I've more become the mom whom my 14 year old groans in despair about when I *gasp* speak to the check-out person in the grocery store, or sometimes plops down beside Paige when she decides she has had enough walking, and wants to just enjoy the scenery.

I've found I quite like scenery too. I don't much care about toys that have age recommendations on them. Our qualifications for a really good toy is one that Paige is curious about, one that brings a smile to her face, or one she lifts to us to explain to her how to make it work.

I don't much care what people think when Paige stops and taps her feet together like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, because I know that when she's wearing her Converse high-tops, she is just making sure the circles with the stars in them on the inside of each shoe still touch when she does that.

We still go to swim class, and Paige's very favorite swim partner is still ME, her Mom. How cool is that...from Mommy and Tot to Mommy and Tween...

I've gotten over myself about parenting a perfect child. Lord knows both of my kids have taught me that.

And, how the heck would I ever be able to parent a perfect child anyway - wouldn't that require a perfect parent???

1 comment:

Emil said...

Thanks Betsy for your lovely message (get over yourself). I am at this stage also in my life where I need to get over this hurdle off seeing my son as a T21 (22 months old) child but rather seeing him for who and what he really is, a loving, happy and smiling child. It takes time some longer some shorter, there is no recipe but the older he gets the more I appreciate and enjoy him and the more I am happy for having such a wonderful little boy. I can’t wait for him to get a little older that daddy and son can really start doing the boys things together.

I lover you my son, my hart may still cry but it is healing