AN ESSAY FOR NEW PARENTS – by Jackie Henry
Down syndrome - the words, Down syndrome. You spell them out in your head; you’ve heard them before yet it’s the first time you have really listened to them. They have a new meaning now, and that meaning is life changing, but a change you will embrace, encourage and cherish forever…
My name is Jackie and I am the Mother of a wonderful little boy named Asa. Asa is chromosomally enhanced, I think of him as bionic. He’s got extra good stuff, much like Spiderman or Captain Courageous.
When Asa was born, we did not know that he would be a Super Hero. It was not until a week after his birth that we found out about his special powers. We were awe struck to say the least, but I was always taught to embrace life and make it what you want it to be. So, after many tears and those dreams of another time and another place, we started to put the pieces together for our Super Hero life.
Our journey with Down syndrome begins; there are those words again!
Today is the present:
I can’t say life is any different then an episode of Leave it to Beaver or the Cosby Show. We are who we are, and we do what we have to do – we live life. Ace (that’s his Super Hero name) was an ordinary baby and is an ordinary boy. We laugh (a lot), play (a lot), eat ice cream and love to swim. We give our dogs kisses and pull their ears, tell Mommy “no” and fight with her when we try to get dressed. Our daily life is typical; we put our pants on one leg at a time and throw our socks down the stairs.
The future is theirs:
And the world is a different place then it was 10 years ago. Our Super Heroes will have so many opportunities to strive and succeed, be included and live long healthy happy lives. They will grow up and have best friends that they jump in mud puddles with and ride bikes, go on double dates and have their first kiss. They will sing in the chorus or play in the band, be a football player and drive a racecar, or be a little princess that turns into a diva. They will be boys and girls, men and woman, who will touch the lives of everyone they meet and know. The feeling is indescribable, it is awe-inspiring and you are so lucky to have a Super Hero of your own.
Enjoy your journey – you will be amazed.