Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Worldless{ish} Wednesday: Big Dreams

- Big Dreams -

Well little buggie, it's been a few days since I've posted.  
My job ties me up so much sometimes, especially this time of year.
That's why I am so glad to come home to my beautiful family every night.

I know my last post made it seem like sometimes I focus too much on what you can NOT do instead of what you CAN do. Please never think that's how I feel... EVER.
Because for you little girl,  I have big dreams.
How big?
I would say...GEORGIA big.

That's right. I'm not hoping you will go to college one day; I am expecting it.
So make sure you get that sitting thing down pat baby girl. You'll need it to stay in your desk.
Yet the most important thing, and this is crucial, you must learn two very important words....


Think you have it? Good.

Happy Wednesday!


Monday, May 16, 2011

Disappointment Bug

Eslea is beautiful. I adore her. I am blessed to be her mother and I would never (never, never, never) trade her for any other child in this entire world.
Yet, when something that seems so small occurs, it can shake my world. Ever so briefly, but it does.
As of today, Eslea still is not sitting unsupported.
I know, some of you may be wondering why that matters so much.
It matters to me.
For the most part I try not to think about it as I help her balance as we go through our physical therapy exercises. Day after day. All the time I'm thinking that today might just be the day she finally gets it.
Sometimes we are close. She is sitting for almost a minute at a time. But when she reaches for a toy or sees something that excites her she becomes distracted and topples over.
I know, some of you will say to give her time.
In my head, I know this. I know that it is not from lack of effort on her part or lack of determination on mine.
Yet, placed on my refrigerator with a green magnet reminding me to recycle, is a chart. A chart that shows the ranges of basic skills for children, both "typical" children and those with Down syndrome. According to this chart, "typical" children begin sitting between six and nine months. Eslea will be eight months Saturday.
I know, some of you will say that even "typical" children can vary so vastly in their developmental milestones.
As her mom, it's hard. It's challenging to watch her very petite and chubby little arms try so hard to reach the ground to stable herself yet she falls just ever so short. Because she can not reach, she props them on her plump little legs and eventually…they slip as a laughing little bundle of joy falls sideways to the floor.
She keeps on trying that little girl of mine…over and over and over again. I’m aware that her challenge for sitting is the same thing that makes her adorable, those tiny arms.

Mothers who have been here before, how do I get past this? What am I missing? I enjoy the time I have with her while we perform these exercises under the guise of playtime. I just so wish to totally enjoy her smiles and giggles instead of always having the minuscule disappointment bug creep up into my head after playtime is over and the end result is still a baby that does not sit alone.
Darn little disappointment bug. I so wish they made raid that was safe for your brain.

Well it’s Monday people and I’m psyching myself up for the week ahead.
I hope yours is fantastic!

Note:  Once again...I 'm having some technical difficulties but make sure to come back later for pictures of a Es and her sitting up endeavors.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Wordless{ish} Wednesday: Supper Time

-Supper Time-

It's supper time Eslea bug.
Tonight we are introducing you to new flavors and textures.
Bananas, raspberries and oatmeal. Yum!

Are you ready?? wide.

Oh baby. It's good. Yummy. Yummy.
 Here we go...good girl.

Still no? One more time baby. Just one little bite and......

SUCCESS! (I think.)
That's okay buggie.
Tomorrow night beans.

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Pure and Simple

Life is amazing in its' simplicity. I'm aware of the absurdity that comment may seem to some because for most of us life is anything but simple. Days often rush by without us stopping to take a breathe. Those days pass into weeks, months, and years. Heartaches and heartthrobs, defeats and rewards, they all come at us in a swirl of emotions that most often would never be described as "simple".
Yet there is one thing in life that I personally find simple.
Love. The innocent love that is shown by children.
Some may argue and say that children do not really understand love. I would disagree, I would say that children have it right. They love automatically. Without thought or reservations.
Pure. Simple. Love.

Even the smallest of children can recognize it as some sort of shared ability. The wide eyed willingness to accept each other. No questions asked.

Eslea saw her cousin Grayson for the first time since she has become more aware of children. To say that she was excited would be an understatement. She flailed her pudgy little arms and screamed at him till he came close enough for some face grabbing and mouth tasting action. But you can't blame her, he is a cutie at only one.

On mothers day Jason and I spent time with both our mothers. This gave us an opportunity to spend some time among the family we wish we could visit with more often. Although the time was short, it was precious to see Eslea among those, who like a child, love her unconditionally.

I sometimes reflect back to the times when I was scared of how others would perceive Eslea. Scared that they would love her only because of her extra chromosome... or maybe not love her for that same reason.
Those thoughts no longer weigh on my mind. It is obvious, people love Eslea just for being Eslea. Spending time with family reassures my soul that my child will grow to know how much she is loved and appreciated for the love she herself gives so willingly.

Maybe we can all one day return to the first form of love.
The love in the form of a child. Pure and Simple.

If you have a little one in your home, take time to enjoy the pure love.

Now, time to clean up the sappy mushy mess I just made.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Happy Mothers Day

Like most everyone else, I planned this really long post about my mother and my mother in law. How wonderful they are to have raised such stubborn and independent people as Jason and I. Yet today, that is not the post I want to make.
Because today, I'm just ....thankful.
Thankful for Emma...
Thank you Emma for making me a mother.
I never knew what depths of love were possible until you came into my world.

Thankful for Eslea....

Thank you Eslea for letting me be your mother.
I never knew how broad my band of love could stretch until you entered this world.

To quote myself from my Special Needs link:
"One of the first things people say to you when they find out you are the parent of a special needs child is 'God chooses only very special people to be their parents'. Do I believe this? I don't know. Most likely, I don't. It's hard to believe that any one person would be chosen over another to raise such a special child.
What I do know is this...the moment Eslea was born, I knew her soul was older than mine. She is a very special child indeed. I can feel it every time I hold her. Every time I smell her sweet baby breathe. I wonder how I got so lucky as to help this beautiful child become the person she is intended. I feel blessed that I am her mom, however it came to be."

I had an Eslea in my belly!
Through our new circle of friends joined by an extra chormosome, I have met some of the most inspiring mothers through blogs, facebook and even in real life. I'm honored to be a part of our growing community that is teaching love and acceptance for everyone.
I hope that every single one of you had the fablous mother's day that you each deserve.

- erin

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Worldless{ish} Wednesday: Dancing Queen

- Dancing Queen -

Mommy, introduce me.

Introduce you?

Yes mommy. I need to dance!

Well, excuse me. Ladies and Gentlemen, introducing..... Emma the Dancing Queen.

Mommy, you forgot about the music.

Oh, of course. La da da la la la.....

Mommy, don't forget my prince.

So sorry my Queen. Now introducing....Prince Jasey.

We are easily entertained around my house.
Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Barriers Beware

In the life of a high school counselor, time becomes a luxury as the end of the school year approaches. Tonight was Honor's Night at my work and I have the pleasure being the Honor's Night Coordinator. I'm exhausted. Somehow I managed to keep the program less than two hours even though this year more student names were added to the program. That's talent my friends.
Yet I'm not here to sing the praises of myself or the fabulous students with whom I work (although they totally deserve their praises to be shouted from a rooftop!). Because while I was there ever so proud for the lovely soon to be graduates, I was also thinking about Eslea. I know. It seems like such an odd time but it just popped into my head. The thought of Eslea in high school.
Will Eslea be invited to honors night?
Will she ever know the pleasure of being recognized for her academic achievements?
I never have these thoughts about Emma. My assumption is that Emma will graduate with honors, she will go to college, she WILL one day be the " PETerinarian" she dreams of becoming.

What about Eslea? I'm not so sure but I've said it before ...I will not be the one to set limits for her.
Yet how do we manage this? The fine line between pushing our kids to aim high while at the same time knowing there are goals that may not be possible for them? I know that this is true for all kids each with their own individual talents and skills. But with Eslea, it’s different. My worry is related more to the things that seem to come naturally for others; those life goals that just seem a given…graduating from high school, going to college, finding a successful career, marriage, having children. (That last one hurts the most.) How do you look such a sweet child in her face and tell her that she CAN NOT do one of those things? I won't do it. I just won't.

Most days I just enjoy HER. Her laughter. Her smile. Her sweet baby smell. Her enjoyment in yelling dadadadada at the top of her lungs. But some days, like today, I am reminded of what barriers may be placed before us in the future. I so desperately want to make those barriers disappear, yet there they are, waiting ever so still. Daring us to approach them and anticipating our response. So although I can not make the barriers move, for they are stubborn things, I will do whatever I can to help Eslea learn to conquer them when they cross her path. However she has to get past them, clawing, kicking, climbing, jumping or knocking them down. I’ll do my best to make sure she is ready.

It’s going to be a good week. Lots of training to do because those barriers are getting closer even if I stand still. We are starting with learning to crawl. Hey, sounds like a good fighting tool to me. Barriers Beware!