I'm still trying to get used to being labeled as a "mom of a child with special needs". (Here's our story.)I'd much rather just be known as a mom with two amazing girls - one just happens to have an extra chromosome. It always makes for a interesting conversation when a stranger approaches me to admire my cute babies. They make me laugh, smile and sometimes even cry.
Last week, a woman in Chick-Fil-A approached me to admire Molly and all of her cuteness.(Can you blame her?) After asking me how old Molly was, she paused and said "I also have a daughter with Down Syndrome. She's 32 and out of all four my children - she is the most independent. She has a job at the grocery store, she plays the piano and participates in piano recitals." You could tell this was a proud mom, she continued to tell me about her daughter's successful life (so far) and how proud she was of her. I instantly felt the tears welling up in my eyes and it wasn't because I was sad. It was comforting and reassuring to hear a total stranger tell me in a roundabout way, that everything was going to be okay.
It's always a little shocking when people stop me and share their connection with Down Syndrome. Don't get me wrong, I love talking and hearing people's stories, it's just something I'm still trying to get used to. Each time it happens, my first internal thought is "How did they know?" I think of myself as a friendly person and love talking to people, but when it's something this personal - it's an emotional moment for everyone involved. I'm so happy that the lady in Chick-Fil-A approached me last week. It is always very uplifting to know that there are others who have been in my shoes...and that my Molly is on the path to a bright, fulfilling life! I couldn't be more proud of her!
The threats of internet have been well-documented over the years, and while you as parent may know how to avoid them, chances are your kids don’t. Things could get ugly real fast if you don’t ensure their safety. However, it is easier said than done, especially in the modern day because kids spend…