Social Networking

I have found myself trying to educate myself to the best of my ability on Down Syndrome.  One of the best resources that I have found is talking to other parents of children with DS.  Unfortunately, that was one of the hardest steps for me to take.  Calling other mothers means that this situation I had found myself in is real.  There is no more denial.  The first couple of phone calls are extremely difficult and I found myself breaking down and barely able to get the words out.  God Bless the mothers who have opened themselves up to me and listened through the tears.  I hope that I will one day be strong enough to do the same for another parent in crisis.  I have met some remarkable women who have raised some amazing children.  I am learning that all children, even those without Down Syndrome, learn at their own pace.  I need to set aside my expectations and listen to the cues that Elena is giving me. 

I am also learning curb my  worries for the future and attempting to focus on the here and now.  As our pediatrician said to me, this journey is like a rollercoaster and it will have its ups and downs.  Right now we are on an upward path and I am truly enjoying my child.  When Elena smiles, she smiles with her entire being.  Having such a happy child makes it difficult to worry so much.  She simply will not allow it.  Elena has been rolling over since she was 6 weeks old.  At first I thought it was a fluke, that it was too early, but she continued to do it.  She scoots herself all over the floor, determined to get where she needs to go.  She reaches for toys and is able to grasp them.  She shakes her rattle with such vigor that she often bangs herself in the face.  All in all, she is much more like a typical 5 month old than not.  I am not naive and I know that this will not continue to be the norm, but I will enjoy and celebrate each new development.

I would recommend to any parent out there to find a network of friends or acquaintances to be able to go to with questions.  We all have friends and family, and they are great and valuable too, but find someone to identify with your specific needs.  Someone who has lived and breathed your fears and can celebrate your victories.  I had been working tirelessly with Elena to reach out and grab her toys.  We were sitting at the bus stop last week waiting for her brother and sister and I watched her reach up and grasp the toy hanging on her car seat.  When she pulled it and realized that her action had caused the toy to play music, she giggled and did it again.  I was so happy that I called a mother I have become close with, and we cried happy tears together until the bus pulled up.  It may seem trivial to any other parent, but to me it was a moment in which I realized that we could overcome our obstacles.

~ by triumphsforelena on November 15, 2010.

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