Day #28 addresses the bonds that connect families who have children with special needs.
You see, and
you stare in admiration-
you identify with, and
you try and lock eyes with them…
you cross the room,
you approach with enthusiasm
you ask knowingly, and then
you share and
you dote on;
you gush and
(and hope you didn’t weird them out too much).
There is a kinship formed and felt with others…families who have a child or sibling with Down Syndrome. I have approached many a stranger; identification and intrigue squashing social graces as I force an encounter. I most often boldly approach and say something like, “Oh, your child is so beautiful or handsome. I have a brother with Down Syndrome.” There is a quiet knowing and understanding that transcends words. In a
brief conversation with a stranger, I try and communicate empathy,
reassurance, and “it’s going to be okay” (and I think your child is really awesome).
Over the years it has been such a blessing for my parents to receive letters from others sharing love and advice from their personal experience with Down Syndrome. This was especially helpful to them right after Brian was born. My dad even wrote his Masters thesis on “Counseling Parents at the Birth of their Child with Down Syndrome.” My parents have been able to provide this same kind of support to many others in similar situations. It feels like we are in a very cool fraternity because of the unique makeup of our families.
Deep Breaths: Where have your experiences led you that you didn’t expect? From where (or from Whom) do you derive your identity?
Ephesians 2:10 “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”