What does this word mean to you? How does it make you feel? Before I had Hailey, the word didn't come up in conversation often. If it did, I had no feeling towards it. Now, I cringe because Hailey isn't considered "typical" in the real-world. In our household, she is no different than her brothers and likewise, we don't treat her any different. We are working with her with the same end goal in sight. We are raising her to be a loving, caring, kind, compassionate person. We want her to reach her maximum potential. To be the best person she can be.
But to society and the medical community, Hailey is not typical...she is considered "atypical". Defined as: not representative of a group, class, or type; deviating from normal expectations; somewhat odd, strange, or abnormal. With that definition, how would you feel knowing that is what people see when they look at your child?
I'm happy that society is slowly embracing differences in individuals and excepting them for who they are. I love reading about barriers that other individuals have broken down. It makes my heart happy. They are paving the way for my Hailey and all her little pals that have Down syndrome. They are opening a whole new world for her.
Child model for Target
Lauren Potter on Glee
The next time you hear the word "atypical"...focus on what comes to your mind. Here are a few images of my "atypical" child....seems quite typical though if you ask me!
|Emptying movies from the TV cabinet|
|Enjoying her dinner|
|Climbing the stairs when she shouldn't be|
|Playing with a pencil and water gun....always going after her brothers' stuff!|