by Rebecca Talley
For those of you who've read my personal blog before you know that I have a son with Down syndrome. It doesn't bother me at all that he has an extra chromosome. He's absolutely adorable, he's healthy, and he's full of fun and life. I've known for years he was coming to my family, though I didn't know he'd have DS. But, I knew he'd be coming at some point. I have no doubt at all that he was meant to be in my family and every day I am so grateful for him, just as I am so grateful for each of my children.
What does bother me about DS is the attitude of others. When my grandfather (who is now deceased) found out a friend of mine was having a child with DS he said, "Can she get rid of it?" (translation: can she abort the baby so she doesn't have to be bothered with it?). For whatever reason, our society seems to think that unless you're perfect, you don't matter. The fallacy in that line of thought is that no one is perfect. We all have struggles and we all have problems. Is it worse to not read at grade level or to throw away an education? Is it worse to not understand sarcasm or to give it so freely no one knows when you're serious? Is it worse to love everyone regardless or to only choose a few select individuals to love?
In the eternal scheme of things, who's really handicapped?
In an effort to change some attitudes and maybe, just maybe, make the world a little better place for my son and the 350,000 Americans (with 5000 more babies born each year) with DS, I've created a new website. I want to show the world that having a child with DS is an honor and a privilege and, in reality, isn't much different than having other children.
The website address is www.downsyndromeassociation.org.
My hope is to turn it into a much larger site complete with a forum so people can come to a safe place (no judging allowed) and ask questions. I'm still working on that aspect, but for now I'd appreciate any input or comments to help me improve it. And, please, pass the link to anyone that might be interested.
Thank you for helping me to change one attitude at a time :).