Ehhh…. things I hate about having a child with Down syndrome? Yeap. You read it right. There are many things I hate about parenting. Like when my kids get chicken pox, one after the other.
So the same with Down Syndrome, why do I need to like everything about it?
- I hate the low muscle tone of children with Down Syndrome. Emma uses that to her advantage when she was in that toddler-tantrum age. Tell me? How can petit, 50kg me get a 10kg jelly-consistency toddler into my arms when she refuses to move off the floor. That’s just not a fair fight.
- I hate it when strangers give her things and call her ‘cute/sweet’. Thank you Ms Stranger, but you didn’t see that glint of satisfaction in her eyes and that sly smile that says she could get away with anything, did you? Just look out for it next time you call her ‘cute’ or ‘pretty’.
- I hate it when she squeal in delight at the sight of the Frozen poster/photo/merchandise at departmental stores. This makes her burst into “Let it go”.
- I hate it when I have to prep people about her Down Syndrome. I don’t mind but it’s draining. And the end result is hardly as expected. Also, educating them about Down Syndrome is like being told of my diagnosis all over again.
- I hate it when I worry for Emma’s future. I really shouldn’t because with Emma’s future, I get to make it happen. How I want it to happen. When I want it to happen. I should worry about her sisters’ future instead. Theirs is a future that don’t have my mark on it, or at least they won’t want much of my involvement in it.
- Most of all, I hate it that my life changed almost 14years ago but it is only I who got to learn what ’empathy’ really meant. When strangers realised Emma has Down Syndrome, I empathize when they become unsure of what to say. When other parents asks if Emma is capable of doing this or that, I empathized with them because they never learned the pride I felt that time Emma learned to walk or speak sooner or better than expected.
- I hate it that Emma was born on Christmas morning almost 14years ago. Yeah. No many parents have had the wonderful experience to give birth to a special child on a special morning.
So really, I hate Down Syndrome. Because of Down Syndrome, a majority of parents do not experience the wonderful, proud moments I experienced raising my Emma these past 13 years.