So I've been doing some thinking, some observing, some reflecting.
Right now I'm very comfortable with my life and with my family. I'm mainly very comfortable with this whole Down syndrome thing. It's something that comes and goes...I know, I know... blah, blah, blah. Sometimes it's a big deal and then sometimes it's not such a big deal. And right now as I watch Bennett interact with others, and how others interact with him, I'm comfortable with it. I remember when we first found out before he was even born how worried I was about what people would say, or think, or do. But right now people accept him and they really have throughout all of his short life. Do we have awesome friends and family or what??!!;)
Right now though I notice this mainly at the pool because this is where we are 90% of our time during the hot summer days. (The other 10% is at Target and people LOVE him there too-lol;)) But it's either swim lessons, swim team practice, swim meets or just general swimming at the pool.
Right now everyone thinks Bennett is "precious", "so cute", "a doll", "adorable", "so sweet". And I have to admit he is at an age where he is all of these things and more. And I know it's very obvious now that he has Down syndrome. In other words...people know. As soon as you look at him you know, and of course that's fine.
But randomly I wonder what pregnant women think when they see him at the pool or around town though, ya know? Because I've caught quite a few looking. Some will ask how old he is and just watch him and smile. I wonder if they're surprised, if they wonder, if they're relieved (because they somehow know their baby is "normal") or if they think that's nice but glad it's not me. Lots of people watch Bennett and smile though and I can't help but feel good about it at our little neighborhood pool because in some way it shows me that his community accepts him and thinks he's pretty cool.
He flirts with the life guards, saying "Hi!" and "Hello" and then "Bye-Bye" and "Later" when we leave. Little girls and teenage girls always smile and laugh and think he's so sweet. He asks every random man or friend that is a man to hold him and then snuggles with them and they all love it.
But I guess the big question is, will it always be this way? I don't know. I mean really, NO, I know it won't. I'm not naive. And I'm kind of a realist anyway. "Negative Nelly"you could say. But perhaps if we live here long enough the neighborhood will come to know him as Bennett- the sweet little boy with Down syndrome and love him and accept him. However, I know the bad times will come. The times where he'll be teased and I will have to do everything in my power to not go full out "mama bear" on whoever talks bad about my boy. The emotions that are wrapped up in Bennett are so strong and this fierce urge to protect him is like no other so right now I can't imagine what I'd do because up until this point he's always been treated so nicely. How do I tame the strong emotions? How do I control the "mama bear" tendencies and the temper I have when someone tries to "harm" my boy?
Goodness, I don't know. That's something that I'll have to take to God because only He can give me the strength to know what to do and how to act.
I guess for now I'll just enjoy the fact that my son is loved, he's accepted, he's treated fairly, he's treated like any other kid (which is all I want by the way). And when the time comes that he's treated poorly I'll simply have to count on God to give me the strength to know how to handle it. Can't promise the "mama bear claws" won't come out but I'm praying that God can give me the grace to know how to handle it.
You know NEVER IN A MILLION YEARS would I ever think I would be okay with having a child with Down syndrome. That I would be comfortable with it. That may sound vain but most of you know I've always been honest on this blog and to be honest Down syndrome is not what I ever wanted or planned. But I'm totally cool with it now and I know Mike is too. I think we're both like "Whatever! This is our life, we like it, we're down with it and all is good."
And let me tell ya, that's a good place to be in! That's where God's plans come into play when you weren't expecting them, smack you in the face and make you realize, "Hey, maybe His plans are better than mine!"
God has done that to me so many times in my life and I think that's why it's "easy" (okay not always easy;0) for me to just accept His plans now when they aren't mine. Even in the HARDEST circumstances.
Right now I'm comfortable....it's a good place to be. Thanks be to God. I know seasons will change and storms will come but I also know and believe without a doubt that Bennett was meant to be here just as he is, and God has a perfect little plan for him in this world and I guess it's our job to make him fit where God wants him.
Right now that's here, comfortable in our little community.