Saturday, June 12, 2010

A Deeper Appreciation

1 month oldI'm still blown away by the fact that Elizabeth is 6 weeks old and is holding her head up fairly well, cooing and smiling. Her rapid development is pretty amazing to us (Bill and I) and the more amazing thing is that it makes us feel so much more appreciative and prouder of Matthew than we were of him before Elizabeth came on the scene. We see just how much more he has to work to learn and achieve developmental goals. Most things are a real challenge for Matthew - things that would come so easily, almost effortlessly, for the 'typical' child. One day, Elizabeth started cooing and smiling. Another day, she started holding her head up. Another day, she started turning her head 180 degrees. We think she'll start rolling over on her own before we know it. No teaching. No work. No therapy. Everything seems to "just happen". She generally has it easy.

In a way, it also helps us appreciate other families who do not have kids with Down syndrome. Unless a family has raised or is raising a child with Down syndrome, that family may never truly understand how much work is involved, how much teaching has to be done, and how emotional the journey can be. But there's nothing wrong with not knowing, not understanding. Bill and I would probably not understand either if we didn't have Matthew.

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Tracy said...

I love your perspective! I sort of took for granted all those early milestones with with my typical babies. Oh they were applauded and duly noted, with phone calls to every one every time one of them did something, but I knew all along they would do it. With Jack it's quite a different scene. He gets his kudos too, probably in equal amounts to my older children when they did them...but it is work. And therapy. And repetition. But it still ROCKS! I wasn't ready for this ride, but I thank God every day that I'm in the front seat to see it all!


Erin said...

This is so true. I am always saying how effortless my daughters development was compared to my sons. He has to work so much harder and we appreciate every little thing!

Monica Crumley said...

I love your post -- just beautiful! And that photo of sweet Elizabeth is too cute! I know you'll continue to be amazed at her development, which will in turn give you a deeper appreciation for Matthew's perseverance and determination. Perhaps he'll even teach her those traits when she's older. :-)

Rochelle said...

Great post Ria. It does give us a deeper appreciation I think for both our kids looking at how they are each amazing, the same and different too.

Beverly said...

so awesome!

Melissa said...

I love this post, and I think that having your first baby have Ds makes you look at your second baby's milestones a little differently, maybe makes you appreciate them more too?