Today is my daughter Cecilia’s 2nd birthday. It also happens to be World Down Syndrome day! I have mentioned this before how coincidental (or not) it is that she was born on this day & her brother soon after was born with Down Syndrome.
I occasionally feel a little guilty that I write more about my son than I do about my daughter…and now, poor thing, she can’t even have this one day on her own birthday to herself! But the reality is she doesn’t need me to. She doesn’t need an advocate – she would be wanted and accepted in this world. Unfortunately, my son would not.
When Raphael was diagnosed, I knew in his own way he would bring us joy and love. But I really did not know or understood what that meant, it was just a fact that people kept telling us.
I really thought they meant “you will have some joy (with a large amount of suffering also)”. Never could I have imagined, or probably would I have believed, that in such a short space of time my outlook on life would have changed so much. It sounds cliché but I don’t know how else to put it – my life is so full of joy. Real substantial joy.
I am reminded of a quote I heard a long time ago, “faith is believing what can only be understood in reverse”. Where I used to think my life would be harder & sadder than other mothers, I realise now that I’ve been given an opportunity to see the world in a totally different way. That is an extra gift that not many others get to experience. Whilst I may have my moments, now that I have seen the other side I think I would be so sad if I had not had Down Syndrome touch my life. Not only is Raph my son with something ‘extra’ – I’m now also a mother with something extra!
I am so proud of my daughter already at 2 and all she can do. I’m so proud when she dotes on her brother & loses her cool when she squeezes is cheeks or plays with his toes. I know I’m going to be so proud of her when she fiercely leads him into battle for his place in the world. I know that if she ever receives the same diagnosis with her own child, she will not be scared – because she has also seen the other side. She will embrace every chromosome knowing it is filled with nothing but awesomeness💕
To read our introduction and background story of our son and life with Down Syndrome, click here
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