Sunday, November 05, 2006

My Little Conversationalist

I haven’t written in so long; the days just sail by. It’s so hard to find time to write when I just enjoy sitting with my kids, reading, laughing, playing ball, or even just watching TV. I know that Owen watches a lot of TV, but I can’t help it. There are times when I just need to put him in front of it to have some time to myself. Like now. We spent two hours in the park, then when I came home it was diapers, and potty, and lunches and milk and laundry. Finally, Tess has gone down for a short nap, and Owen is watching Nemo.

It’s amazing to me how much his language skills are picking up. He now says “Memo” for Nemo, when before, he would never say it. He is starting to say, “Owen,” sometimes, and I love when he says, “Mommy,” although he says “Bobby,” instead of Mommy. But I am so thrilled that I always answer, “Yes, Owen.” In fact, the other day, I had a revelation. I had picked up Owen from school, and as I always do, I ask him how school was. He never gives me a straight answer, but he will say, “Bobby,” and I say, “Yes, Owen,” and he says, “Flowers…sun…trees…” And I say, “that’s right Owen. The sun makes the trees and flowers grow.” A minute later, “Bobby.” “Yes, Owen,” I answer. “The fishes are swimming in the water,” he says. And I smile and say, “that’s right, Owen, the fish swim in the water.” And our conversation goes on. And I really feel as if I am conversing with my son. Not everyone would understand that we are having a conversation, but we are. And I am so proud of him, that he is communicating with me, that it makes me feel as if I too, get a chance to experience what motherhood with a typical child is like. We had our MOMs support group the other night, and I told them how amazed I was that he is able to communicate, and not just through sign and gesture anymore.

I also realize lately that we as parents of children with Down syndrome are getting robbed. Robbed of our ability to be able to enjoy our children, and expect more of them. I can’t tell you how many times we have all commiserated with each other because we thought our children would not be able to do anything, or if they did, it would take them forever to do it. Yet, my son walked at 21 months, potty trained the same month, and has had numerous milestones much sooner than the medical community led me to believe. The medical community seems to enjoy painting the dark, horrid picture of how miserable our kids’ lives will be. But what they don’t point out is that, given the time and the patience and the love, they can succeed in a timely manner. Why do they do that? Why are they so insistent on making us feel bad for having our children? What is so wrong with having a child who is all about love?

Tess is really moving around now. She’s not crawling yet, per se, but she is trying. She goes up on her knees, then lowers her back, and combat crawls. She’s doing exactly what Owen did, and pretty much in the same timeline. Owen combat crawled at 10 months, then really crawled at 13 months, and Tess is 9 months. I do hope that she crawls, and doesn’t just skip right to walking. It’s funny, though, to me she seems to be reaching milestones the same as Owen. She has to go through the same learning pattern as he did. In my mind, I guess I always thought that when I had a typical child, they would just up and crawl, like magic; no steps in between, no learning curve, just a leap forward. I have to say, though, I am so lucky to be able to be home and enjoy watching my children grow. So many parents don’t get that chance, and they miss out on it. I see how fast Tess and Owen have grown, and I know in a matter of years, I will be wishing they were babies again. So, for now, I’m going to fill myself up with every moment I can.


Blogger shellsbells said...

It's always good to hear from you! I enjoy reading your blog and am constantly amazed at how similar our lives are. I wonder the same things about doctors, etc. Our Owen is thriving and doing well. That's so true about DS children knowing nothing but love. I truly believe they're angels sent to the deserving. Take care!

8:38 AM  
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