Returning from the bathroom the other day, I saw that My One True Darling Man had given baby Mack some mashed up banana in my absence.
This was it; his first bite of food – my last baby eating something for the very first time.
An event of real significance and I was not there to record each and every second, I wasn’t there to
steamroll monitor this “first”, this milestone. And yet, it all happened anyway, and it was fine. Really. It was.
Inclusion and advocacy are like this, I think.
The small moments are the ones in which milestones are reached, “firsts” happen.
It’s not about the drumroll and the flag unfurling in the wind along with a ceremony (although those are nice); it’s the small actions in daily life. Talking to someone with Down syndrome as you would anyone else. Interviewing an applicant with Down syndrome, making friends with people with Down syndrome. Real friends.
In the spirit of the small moments being profound and in honor of March 21st (3-21) being World Down syndrome Day, let’s celebrate with our own 3 truths: one fact, one fallacy and one photo. These can be related to Down syndrome, to the spirit of inclusion, advocacy/awareness – whatever makes sense to you.
I’ll go first.
It’s the little things that can count the most.
High five the guy with Down syndrome that you see on Park Street that wants to high five you. Be just as open to making friends with people with Down syndrome (or disabilities) as you are to people without ; then step back and watch as your kids, nieces/nephews/extended family invite their classmate with autism/Down syndrome/cerebral palsy/who is deaf to your home for a slumber party.
People with Down syndrome are not beautiful.
That’s the biggest load of hogwash I ever stepped into. For the life of me, I don’t know how this bit of untruth ever got perpetuated to begin with.
– links will be live until Sunday, March 24th. You are also welcome to simply add the URL to the (non bite sized) post you have written for WDSD. This Hop will be archived on the Down syndrome Blogs site after March 25th.
Meriah Nichols is a counselor. Solo mom to 3 (one with Down syndrome, one on the spectrum). Deaf, and neurodiverse herself, she’s a gardening nerd who loves cats, Star Trek, and takes her coffee hot and black.