A Blog Was Born

Happy Birthday to Baby Lemonade Blog!

I bought myself a domain.

~www.babylemonadeblog.com~

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{1 Year + 2 Days ago} I took the hardest event of my life and posted it on the internet for everyone to see.

In the Beginning I was a different person. I keep that first post up because I think (and hope) that it’s relatable. I like to go back and read it from time to time. It reminds me of where I started. Sure, I was hopeful and took the challenge head on, but it reminds me of the naiveté that once clouded my judgment.

It’s hard to believe that these were some of my first thoughts:

This is just a false positive.” 

We are young and healthy.” 

We are extremely low-risk.” 

This kind of stuff doesn’t happen in real life.”

Entering the world of Down syndrome has been extremely humbling. It’s like leaving your house for the first time. You think you have it all figured out. You know every nook and cranny of that house, but just one step out the door changes your perspective. By the time you make it to the mailbox, you realize that much has been happening right under your nose. You just never thought to peek out of the windows before.

Reflecting on this is incredibly important to me. The person that I once was, that is the type of person that I’m trying to reach today. I am trying to reach the people that are well-intentioned and caring, just unfamiliar to Down syndrome and people with special needs. The people that are eager to listen and are just waiting for something to hear.

There is SO MUCH to know about Down syndrome (not to mention other disabilities). I have learned something new every day since getting that fateful call from our doctor. There’s no time to slow down either. The world is changing and its changing fast. When it comes to Kara’s special needs, I’ve been told to disregard anything that is more than five years old because it is most likely outdated. Think of where we’ll be in another five years! The future for Kara is so limitless that I can’t possibly imagine what she is going to accomplish.

I believe in her with all of my heart. 

That’s not to say that I don’t have times of doubt. There are days where it is very hard to put one foot in front of the other, where Kara has seemed to regress and I can’t help but blame myself. I’m still human and sometimes succumb to pessimism.

The other day, I was trudging through one of these hopeless phases. I kept thinking,

“I am way in over my head here.”

“Why am I even doing this?”

“Is anyone listening?”

I had all but given up on every motivational quote/success story/compliment that I’d ever heard and was close to accepting that Kara just wasn’t going to defy the odds.

That same weekend we were at a friend’s house for a get-together and I was forced to tote Kara around because she refused to be held by anyone else. It was hot. I was exhausted. She was cumbersome. She was feeling especially heavy since she was having a day where she just seemed to flop instead of hold herself up. But, of course, I wore a smile to cover the frustration.

After mingling for a while, I eventually stepped aside to take a breath. Kara and I found ourselves next to the back door, feeling the cool & welcomed breeze come through the screen.

That’s when I faced my greatest fear for the very first time.

A young girl walked up to the screen door and tried to open it. I was watching her, thinking that she looked uncannily like my sweet, younger cousin. She seemed like a good kid, a nice girl. Then she called out for help. The girl announced that she had “special needs” because she couldn’t figure out to open the door. She laughed as she said it and I lost my breath.

It was the most awful feeling. She was standing right next to me and Kara. I had no idea what to do.

I felt embarrassed, dumbfounded, completely caught off guard. My first reaction was to look around. Did anyone else realize that someone made fun of “special needs” in front of my baby? I fought off the urge to burst into tears.

It might seem silly to some because I’m sure that this girl didn’t mean any harm. I’m sure that she didn’t think twice about what she was saying. Regardless, this is what I heard when she said those words: “I’m so dumb, I’m incapable of figuring out this lock… just like a person with special needs.” 

I stood in shock. What was I supposed to do? Do I call her out? Tell her “Hey, my daughter here has special needs. Don’t say that.”  Do I pull her mother aside and tell her that she needs to have a talk with her kid?

Then I did the worst thing possible ::: I did nothing.

I was about to leave right then and there. I needed to be alone. I needed to sit down and think about this. About how I am feeling and how I’m suppose to react. My stomach was turning, but I toughed it out a little while until I finally excused myself and carried my sweet girl out to the car. I didn’t make it halfway there before I felt the tears release. In that instant, all my pessimistic emotions melted away. She will defy ALL odds. As I strapped her in her car seat, I looked directly in her blue eyes and told her “You remember… You are smart and you are beautiful, and I love you so so so much.”

This experience is what fuels my ambition for my blogging. I wish I could keep Kara from hearing these things, but of course, that’s just not possible. Brace yourself for when I encounter something much harsher than a silly, indirect comment from a little girl. My inner Mama Bear grows fiercer each day.


One year ago, a co-worker of mine pulled me aside, told me I had a gift, and said that I should write about what we were going through.

Thus, a blog was born.

At first, I just wanted to keep our friends and family informed on our high-risk pregnancy. I wanted a place to come to where I could write down my thoughts and straighten them out in my head. I wanted to connect with other families who have gone through the same experiences.

Now here we are one year later. This site has transformed into an unbelievably great outlet for me, a platform for Down syndrome advocacy, and a place for inspiration & bottomless love.

Thank you for reading, sharing, inspiring, and loving us back. 

One year ago, I had no intention of doing this long term, but there’s a lot that can change in a year…

I’m just getting started.

 

 

 

 

9 thoughts on “A Blog Was Born

  1. Happy Birthday to your Blog!!! And I am so happy that you have shared your story! I have a younger brother who has Down Syndrome & I can so relate to many of the things you have shared. Before staying home with my baby boy, I taught Preschool Special Education and this Blog is such a wonderful form of advocacy! What an inspiration your sweet family is ❤

    xoxo,
    Amanda
    misslulupearlblog.blogspot.com

    Like

  2. I’d say you did just the right thing in the moment – stepped back and thought about it so you will be prepared next time. You’re killing it, mama!

    Like

  3. Love this! I too have had those moments where I did the unthinkable, the nothing…There sre just times where we are taken off guard. Keep up the good work mama

    Like

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