Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Having Fun in Texas!

honestly, this is one of the best trips to texas we've ever had! we were able to celebrate my in-laws 50th anniversary with their church family and friends! congratulations carole and jim! way to go! very proud and thankful for you! and i thank you especially for your precious son, tim!

we were blessed to stay with one of my cousins, the kemp family as we travelled out to texas! and on top of a great visit with them, they introduced us to mary and her adult daughter who has Down syndrome, giselle. they have been praying daily for wyatt since before his open heart surgery! we also got to spend time with some of tim's cousins, who we haven't seen in years! we have been blessed to spend time in one of their homes, the curtis family, and they have been most gracious hosts! we have laughed a lot together!

another highlight of our trip has been getting to meet two of my facebook friends in person! i met cassie and her adorable daughter brennan in sweet! brennan and wyatt were so precious together...especially when brennan kissed him! his first kiss! then i got to meet felicia and baby grace in texas! baby grace is beautiful, and it was great visiting with her mom and brothers too! we are so blessed in our Down syndrome community to have friends all over the world that we are connected to through that little extra chromosome!

and we're not even finished with our trip yet!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Oh, The Beautiful Faces of Down Syndrome....

as i sat in one of the general sessions of the national down syndrome congress national convention, i was struck by how beautiful all those faces were. it was breathtaking, actually! those beautiful babies, children, teens and adults who share that same extra chromosome....the "extra beautiful" one! the innocent, loving, trusting chromosome! to watch them dance without embarrassment, with no fear of what others might think of them. to clap and rejoice freely over the accomplishments of others. to witness the pure joy of little girls and boys meeting cinderella and mickey mouse for the first time! it was incredibly encouraging!

it was an amazing weekend, and i'm so glad that we were able to go. i actually can't wait to go again! it was fantastic to meet facebook friends who i've come to cherish dearly over the past year. to meet new friends that i know God brought specifically into my life for a reason! to reconnect with wyatt's first friend with Ds, benjy... and to be able to deepen the relationships with have with families from our local group, acton up with downs. it was an awesome weekend!

i heard over and over again how very blessed we all are to have been given a child with down syndrome (so true!). with as much encouragement as i received, i was reminded of the hard road ahead for each of us. the therapies, school decisions, ifsps, ieps, financial decisions...the list goes on and on....all to insure that our children have the best lives they can have! it's exhausting!

it was also great to hear the end result of that hard work, as i heard self advocates (adults with down syndrome) share about their lives...lives they love....lives they live independently; working, serving, their lives to the fullest....just like everyone else!

because we are more alike than different.........

Monday, July 12, 2010

Heading to NDSC National Conference!

what was i thinking? and why am i on the computer? we are leaving in 1 1/2 hours to drive to tampa for tim's work meetings, then over to orlando for the national down syndrome congress national conference! with forrest and wyatt....driving all that way this afternoon! yikes! in the heat of summer! to top it all off, we're going to disney july! how crazy are we? anyway, i know that we are going to learn so much from this conference, and i can't wait to meet all my cyber facebook friends! how exciting! i feel so close to so many of you that i just can't wait to actually meet you in person! yay! and so i'm off....i'll report back next week!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Wyatt's 1st Birthday!

well, it's hard to believe that in a mere twenty four hours, wyatt will be 1 year old. sure, at 12 am on july 6th he's officially 1, but i know that it was right about 10:15 pm when he made his grand entrance! i'd been trying to have him for at least two days, really wanted a 4th of july baby, but he wasn't quite ready yet! (maybe God was still giving him that little something extra he was born with? =)?)

but when he arrived, he was quick! we got to the hospital about 45 minutes before he was born! i was just glad that our doctor made it....glad that she encouraged me to head to the hospital when i called her at about 8:45 that night! i remember i was having some pretty good contractions when we pulled up to the hospital, and i told tim that i didn't think i could do this.....i was too old! he just laughed and told me "no, you're not too old, and we're going to have a baby!" when the nurse checked my progress to make sure i was in real labor she laughed at me too (which i did not find funny) when she told me i was dilated to 8 cm already! i even think my doctor might have laughed at me when i told her i could not do this, i could not push him out....she just said " don't have to...." riiiiigggghhhhhtttt! what an exciting and fast night that was! i praise God for such a fast delivery!

i, of course, had no idea how our lives would change after that night....the surprise of his "little something extra"....that extra 21st chromosome that God gave him. i'd never known such joy and sorrow (at the same time) as i knew those first few could this beautiful "perfect" baby have down syndrome? i knew that our lives had changed forever! as much as i knew that God was in control, it still hurt so very much....the unknown, the misperceptions, my lack of knowledge about down syndrome....and only God knew the new friendships that we would be blessed with simply through that little extra chromosome!

but oh what a difference a year makes. there was no sorrow as we celebrated his birthday yesterday. he has brought such joy to our lives and the lives of so many...our extended family, our church family and friends far and wide. he has blessed our lives in so many ways. he has brought people together with a love for him! we've been brought together through his first buddy walk...there were over 50 people on team wyatt last year....and through his open heart surgery in february....over 800 people praying through his facebook group, wyatt's prayer warriors! wow! what a difference his young life has made!

and i am so thankful that God chose me to be his mom; entrusted me with this precious child of His.....peace....