Monday, May 7, 2012

Ice Cream Sundaes

Yesterday, we met the neatest little guy in the world!  He's got a smile and laugh that will melt you to pieces.  I have a feeling that he and Sam are going to be very good friends someday.

Backup to March 31....The day after Sam was born, the hospital got us in touch with a family from a neighboring town who also have a son with Downs.  The mom graciously came to the hospital to visit with us and to help answer questions we had.  The doctors and nurses were great about answering the medical and technical questions, but we wanted to talk to a "real" person who had experienced it.  She came and shared pictures, and stories and real life stuff with us.  It was the greatest thing anyone could have done for us at that time.  We were grieving, heavily...and she stepped into our room and basically said "hey, don't be scared.  I've been where you are, come follow me."

After we brought Sam home, we kept in touch with this family to give them updates.  They invited our family for dinner, and we were so excited!  They have two older daughters that are the same age as our oldest and second daughter...we couldn't wait!  So we marked the calendar and anxiously awaited the big day.

Truthfully, I was excited, but so nervous at the same time.  I was so scared that I would go meet this little boy, who is 3 1/2, and get a taste of what my life would be like in 3 or so years.  I was scared of what it would "taste" like.  What would he be like?  I have never in my life spent time around a person who has Downs, so I can honestly say I had no idea what to expect...but a large part of me was afraid it would be not so great.  I feared I would see a glimpse of the problems we would be up against down the road.

I couldn't have been more was like the biggest best ice cream sundae I could have dreamed of!  Hot fudge, caramel, a little strawberry topping, whipped cream AND sprinkles!!  All in one bowl!!!  We pulled into the drive and the little guy came running over to me with a huge smile on his face and put his hand on my leg.  Now keep in mind he has no idea who I am, but he treated me like we'd been buddies for years.  Then he greeted Kevin with the same enthusiasm!  Wow!  There were tiny tears welling up in my eyes as I grinned from ear to ear.

This little guy was so full of life.  He was so smart!  He immediately started talking to us in both spoken and sign language.  He was so energetic!  He never stopped moving and engaging in activity the entire time we were there!  He made me laugh all evening long - joy, he is joy!  Instead of being afraid of what or where Sam would be in three or so years, I now can't wait until he's there.  I can't wait to see his personality develop, and watch him learn new things.  Downs or no Downs, a boy is a boy is a boy, and his mom told us - "you just wait, your time is coming." (she said this as her little guy trotted around the living room with his cowboy hat on saying "yee-haw!!")

As we suspected, the girls all got along great too - jumping on the trampoline and giggling together all evening.  The mom and I easily chatted all evening long and the guys hit it off too.  I can't help but think that if it weren't for Sam, we probably would have never met this wonderful family.  Already I can see a great bond forming between our sons, between our daughters and between ourselves.  Just another wonderful thing Sam has done for us - thanks man, you're the best!

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